Archive for 29th June 2009

Snapping Turtle on Paint Creek Trail

Yesterday my friend Brian ([info]replika) and I headed out for a bike ride. Parking at Rochester Mills we rode up the Paint Creek Trail, winding our way through to the back entrance of Bald Mountain Recreation Area‘s North Unit. (Here’s a map of the North Unit trails, from Flickr user cedarkayak.)

Taking some back connector paths, we entered the system just north of #5, and continued around the outer parts of the white, orange, and blue loops before heading back to the PCT. Everything went well, although some areas were a bit muddy and a bit much for Brian. It made for a slower than normal ride, but I’m sure he’ll become more comfortable with it all as he rides more offroad stuff. The shortcut connector from the Bald Mountain trails out to Conklin Rd were extremely overgrown, and combined with yesterday’s strong winds, riding the 10″ wide path with 3′ tall grass along it was a bit frustrating.

That photo above is a Common Snapping Turtle which we saw right in the middle of the PCT, somewhere just northwest of Rochester. One has to be careful not to get too close to these turtles, as they are aggressive and capable of quickly removing fingers. Here is a photo from under Gunn Road, which is the entrypoint to the PCT when one is riding dirt roads to connect Stony Creek and Bald Mountain / Addison Oaks.