No Mosquitos and No Rain…
We lodged at the wonderful White Rose Bed and Breakfast in Fort Plain last night and let ourselves sleep in and enjoy our innkeeper, Melissa’s, comfortable and welcoming home. She had greeted us with a warm smile the night before and then drove us to a local restaurant, The Table, for dinner. Melissa exemplifies the kind and generous spirit the people along the Erie Canal have shown us thus far, a spirit that has buoyed and sustained us. We are so very grateful.
After leaving the White Rose, we stopped at the grocery store for some supplies and then set off down the trail. The sky was gray and overcast but we didn’t get rained on all day and there were very few mosquitoes. We’ve seen a few Robin egg shells on the trail. This one was whole, blown from its nest.
We walked about 18 miles along the old Erie Canal, the newer Barge Canal, and The Mohawk River today. We startled up a hen turkey and her three chicks at one point. I should say she startled us! She was very big! Seeing her led to long conversation about the different names given to birds and their young, like geese/goslings, etc. In the end we really weren’t sure the name of a baby turkey so we settled on ‘chick,’ but that’s the way conversation on the trail goes…anything, no matter how seemingly insignificant, can lead to an in depth discussion.
Every once in a while, we glimpse a beautiful rock wall, made from massive cut stones. It has been almost swallowed up by the overgrowth of berries and vines, which look like wild grapes. We think this must be the original wall along the canal…at least that is what our imagination says. It is fortunate that New York realized the history and wonder of the canal before it was entirely swallowed up by nature and progress. Maybe you can see the wall peeking out in these pictures. They’re not especially photogenic.
We came upon a farm and this little guy was peeking out from behind his low roofed pig house. We were fairly sure that we could see, within the murky dimness of the pig house, the large teardrop shaped ears of his mother sow. I decided to take a picture, mostly for our daughter Sophie, who is raising pigs just like this one. Just as I focused my camera (phone) on him, he bravely stepped out from his hiding place, allowing me to capture him in all his cute piglet grandeur.
Of course, we spoke to him and as he inched towards us, about 10 – 12 brothers and sisters literally poured out of the house, some hiding behind it too.
The first little piglet was decidedly smaller than the rest and we quickly decided that “Blackie,” as we affectionately called him, was the runt and the reason he was outside while the others were curled up with their mother inside. Although the smallest, he was, without a doubt, the cutest.
Aaron took this video of me. For some reason he is forever entertained by my method of hoisting my pack onto my back. I am not crazy about having my picture taken, let alone published, but I’m afraid I’ll not hear the end of it otherwise. So, here you go…
Just before Little Falls we came to General Herkimer’s home. He led the Battle of Oriskany in the Revolutionary War, a battle that proved to be a turning point for the young colonies. The beauty of the estate and the views of the surrounding area were breathtaking. General Herkimer, his family, and neighbors are buried in the cemetery here.
We arrived at Little Falls Rotary Park at 6 pm. We were greeted by Dave who showed us around and helped us get settled. We showered, washed laundry, cooked dinner, and went to sleep…the end of another amazing day on The Erie Canal.