Snowmageddon Cambridge MA

Cambridge Snowmageddon 2015

The Boston area is getting the brunt of storm Juno. The MTA isn’t running and Boston and Cambridge has totally  shut down. The snow will continue throughout the day. I will update this post with snow totals when the snow stops falling.

Here are some pictures Luke took just outside his house near downtown Cambridge. You will notice that the only thing you can see of Luke’s Jeep is the windshield wiper and side mirror. It will take a long time to dig that out.

 

Chimney Rock

This winter, the park has a lot of work going on. New construction will bring the re-opening of two long closed trails. It is great to see money being spent at the park.

I couldn’t get to Exclamation Point because there is still some serious ice up there. I made it as far as the Opera Box. Looking down from there, I could see where workers have chiseled steps into the rocks for the new trails. It looks like one of the trails will turn to the right off the main staircase about half way up to the Chimney and go around the face of the rock cliff under the area that peregrine falcons nest. It will be interesting to see if that disturbs the nest in the spring.

Here are a few pictures of some the working being done.

Chimney Rock

This winter, the park has a lot of work going on. New construction will bring the re-opening of two long closed trails. It is great to see money being spent at the park.

Here are a few pictures of some the working being done.

 

Trombatore Trail

Trombotore Trail

Trailhead Parking: Take Hwy 64 east from 1-26 in Hendersonville, NC. About 2 1/2 miles past I-26, turn left on Fruitland Rd. Next, turn left on Old Clear Creek Rd go only a few hundred yards and turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Rd. Follow Bearwallow Mountain Road and after a few miles, you will have to turn right again to stay on Bearwallow Mountain Road. Drive past Grand Highlands Development and about 1/4 mile the road turns into a gravel road at the parking spot for the Trombatore Trail.

  • Distance: 5.4 Miles RT
  • Elevation Gain: 1246′
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Green Knob

We spent Martin Luther King, Jr. Day up on the parkway near Wagon Road Gap on the Green Knob section of the Mountains to the Sea Trail. It was a bluebird day and the temps warmed to the mid 50’s during our hike.

The parkway was closed, so we parked at the parking lot at the Hwy 276 parkway entrance. We walked down the parkway to the trail and walked to the Green Knob summit marker and back.

On the way back, instead of hiking back across the road to our usual side trail, we continued on the MTS down to where it intersects Hwy 276 and then took the road back to the car.

 

Buckhorn Gap

New trails seem to be “trending” early in this new year. One trail we had not tried yet was in The Avery Creek area that is a great place to hike during the winter months when the parkway is closed.

  • Distance: 3.0 miles to Buckhorn Gap Shelter (6 miles RT)
  • Elevation Gain: 1100 feet
  • Difficulty:  Moderate


The Buckhorn Gap Trail is further down Avery Creek Road than we usually go. It is a heavily traveled 3 mile trail to the shelter sharing a large portion of the trail with trail bikes and horses. It might be crowded in the summer months. We have read that it is also a great wildflower hike in warmer weather.


We hiked up the trail and took a .6 mile detour out to Twin Falls where there are actually 3 waterfalls falling into a sheltered valley. This is a great place for a summer picnic. We stopped and took pictures and talked with other hikers that were on their way to spend the night at the shelter. They seemed like a great group of young professionals and seemed to be excited about their trip. Of course, I thought to myself, “Wow! They came a long way to see this and it is virtually in our own backyard.” I never take that for granted. We are fortunate and I appreciate every minute spent in the woods hiking with my best friend.

Twin Falls

Twin Falls is located off a .6 mile spur trail from the main Buckhorn Gap Trail. The falls descend from a horseshoe shaped valley. The first water fall you come to on the left is not one of the “twins.” It is pretty, though.

Phil took these pictures of the falls. It is well worth the extra walking to see them and this would be a great destination for a summer picnic.

Trombatore Trail

Trailhead Parking: Take Hwy 64 east from 1-26 in Hendersonville, NC. About 2 1/2 miles past I-26, turn left on Fruitland Rd. Next, turn left on Old Clear Creek Rd go only a few hundred yards and turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Rd. Follow Bearwallow Mountain Road and after a few miles, you will have to turn right again to stay on Bearwallow Mountain Road. Drive past Grand Highlands Development and about 1/4 mile the road turns into a gravel road at the parking spot for the Trombatore Trail.

  • Distance: 5 Miles RT
  • Elevation Change: 1000 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Trombatore Trailhead is found where the pavement ends just past the Grand Highlands Development on the top of Bearwallow Mountain in Henderson County, NC.  A gate crosses the Bearwallow Mountain Trail and immediately across the road is the trailhead to Trombatore Trail. The trail “kiosk” has been constructed but doesn’t contain any signs, instructions or trail information yet. The Carolina Mountain Land Conversancy has added a few temporary laminated signs that should work fine until spring when the state can add more permanent signage. So, if you don’t see any signs in the kiosk, you are in the right place.

Trombatore Trail is a woodlands trail that descends to Brush Creek and then ascends to the trail terminus at Blue Ridge Pastures. Within the first 1/2 mile of the hike, a strong spring pops up out of the ground to your right. Near the spring is one of the oldest locust trees I’ve ever seen.Seen at right, it is the knobby one in the center of the picture.

Several switchbacks take hikers down through woodland boulder fields. The big rocks remind me of our hikes in the Smokies. The boulders are big and have moss of them like they have been there a long time. As you descend the trail, an impressive cliff face can be seen to your left through the trees.


So, you wind your way down to the creek and are rewarded with a little water fall seen at the left with icy patches from our recent cold weather.

As you leave the creek, you will find the trail intersects with a very old road bed. The road bed continues to cross the trail back and forth at intervals all the way to the top of the mountain. The trail angels did a good job building this trail last year. You will ascend several locust staircases on your way to the top.

When you get to the end, you know it. A ladder has been built to get over an old barbed wire fence where the meadow begins. This was compliments of the Carolina Mountain Conservancy trail angels. They did a lot of work to help get this trail built.

When you pop out into the meadow at Blue Ridge Pastures, the world opens up. You will need to walk to the top of the hill to get the full view. From there, you can see The Black Mountains, The Craggys, Rumbling Bald, Bearwallow Mtn., and Little Pisgah Mtn. There is a fire ring and a horse corral for campers. Note: Horses are not allowed on the Trombatore Tail. The horses access the area from a different network of horse trails.

It is a great hike and you get a pretty good workout out and back again. It was exciting to us to discover this new trail so close to our house. A lot is being done to open up an extensive trail network in the Hickory Gorge area. Thanks to all or the trail angels who are helping to get this done. We feel so fortunate to live here.