Monday, September 16, 2013

Mount Philo and geocaching

For a month now, we've been driving past Mount Philo and planning to hike up to the top. The girls, of course, act as if this will require crampons, oxygen, and ropes, and is nothing short of child abuse. In fact, Mt Philo is little more than a smallish hill. My host at UVM, Susanmarie, said her daughter had hiked up it when she was much younger than our this weekend was set as the day we 'knocked this bugger off' (to quote a famous New Zealander).

Bruce wanted to do the walk when the leaves turned (we are going to be VERY busy when the leaves turn, since most things, it seems, need to be seen at that time) so when Susanmarie and Sofia said they'd like to come with us, he jumped at the chance to get some work done. A girls' day out it would be!

The hike up was quite steep, but lovely.

Very 'Lord of the rings' I thought

And the views at the top were magnificent.

The Adirondacks never looked more mysterious.

We rewarded ourselves with honey crisp apples and sugar cookies, and a most mysterious and utterly delicious seaweed snack
 Just as much fun, though, was that Susanmarie and Sofia introduced us to geocaching.  I had read about geocaching, and have friends who spend their weekends exploring new places this way, but never tried it before. It's a kind of treasure hunt. On Mt Philo we found our first 'treasure'. It required Susanmarie to show some agility, ingenuity and determination.Whichever way we walked, the GPS showed we were getting further away from our quarry. Until Susanmarie decided the only logical direction was up.

She had to climb up a tricky rock to get here!
The three girls had such fun investigating and recording the find. We left a NZ$2 coin in the treasure.

With a great sense of accomplishment, the girls almost ran down the hill!

Sofia and Susanmarie headed off to a skating lesson, and we headed home. Where we spent a happy time feeding the chipmunks:

And I purred over my new, beautiful, yet-to-be-broken-in hiking boots:

They feel like you're walking on a cloud. No excuse now not to do the Tongariro Crossing!

ps I should add that the highlight of Bruce's weekend was going to the Monkton Fire Brigade Mud Bog - a much more testosterone fuelled affair. But since I was beavering away at my book, there was no-one to record this fuel-burning mud-splattering (and by all accounts hilarious) episode.


  1. The day sounds wonderful, with the bonus of a sense of accomplishment — and evidence of Em running

  2. Indeed - I thought it was worth a photo!!