The latter part of last week was filled with lacrosse practices for both teams, games I watched in person (Elmont vs. Wheatley) and via streaming (UNC vs. Stony Brook) on Saturday, and then the Boys game Sunday morning in Glen Cove. I went to the High School game to support one of my favorite coaches (and people), Kemola Webster, from Elmont. Year in and year out she puts together solid (and sometimes very good) teams, regardless of the collection of players. She has built a great culture there, and I love watching them. This year, the Spartans are not as strong as they have been recently and they were a bit overmatched by a skilled Wheatley squad, but they never stopped competing and improved throughout the game, on a very hot morning. The grounds at Wheatley are beautiful, and I was grateful to be able to watch a game in person, in such a setting.
A Beautiful Setting for Lacrosse on a Hot Saturday in May!
I was able to watch North Carolina remain undefeated by overcoming a great effort by an extremely tough Stony Brook, team. SB held a two goal lead with less than ten minutes remaining, and appeared to be surging, when Carolina finally gained control of the game and would go on to win by three, 14-11. Both teams were beyond impressive!
Sunday morning was another hot one, and the setting in Glen Cove, was in stark contrast to the pastoral Wheatley. Tucked in between various industrial yards and next to the bay (and I heard, a sewage treatment plant), the lacrosse fields were poorly cared for, and the air carried the odor of low tide. Despite the lack of a warm up (our players mostly arrived late), we opened the game well and built a 5-2 lead before somehow losing our way and allowing Glen Cove to tie the game very late. It was a sloppy and even ugly (an unfortunate fight broke out) affair, which ended up feeling like a bad loss, even though the final score was 5-5. Despite all of that, I saw many signs of real progress, with many more completed passes and several players getting their first groundballs and first shots on goal.
With the car loaded, Debi and I left driectly from Glen Cove to begin the five hour drive to Saranac Lake, where we were to meet Jon and Diana for a week of hiking in the Adirondacks. The ride up was progressively beautiful and by the time we stopped for gas, just a few miles from our Air BnB Cabin on Lake Flower, the temperature was in the low 50’s . It was in the high 80’s when we left Long Island! The bad taste of the Boys game and the malodorous air of Glen Cove, was replaced with the taste of cheesburgers from the grill and the clean, crisp Adirondack air!
The View from the dock on Lake Flower!
Diana and I watched the end of the Women’s Division III Final, with Salisbury holding off Tufts for a one goal victory. We all retired early, with big plans to take on Porter Mountain, one of the “High Peaks”, on Monday morning.
A great night’s sleep, followed by a delicious breakfast, and then we were off. Somehow, we ended up at a different Trail Head, and decided to just pick one and go with it. So, we hiked along John’s Brook for three or so miles before deciding to go on to Bushnell Falls for a total of five miles, one way. This was substantially more than we had planned on and the last portion was taxing to say the least. But we could hear the falls and were determined to reach that destination. We were rewarded with a beautiful scene, which fueled us for the long trek back.
Ten miles roundtrip, was definitely more than we had bargained for, and as we emerged from the woods, the CRV never looked so good. We devoured sandwiches, fruit and water on the ride back to home base. After showers, there we grilled chicken for dinner and then settled in for the Islanders – Penguins game. I was the only one, still awake when the Isles won 3-2 in Double Overtime!
Monday’s hike had taken a lot out of all of us, so rather than attempting another one, we decided Tuesday morning to check out the High Falls Gorge, which is very close to the entrance to Whiteface Mountain. This option was not too tough on the weary legs but we were all so happy we went, as the Gorge is really specatacular!
Wednesday we were all determined to get back on track after our rest day on Tuesday. Debi and I were up and out of the house before 8:30 and we made the five minute drive to Baker Mountain, which is the shortest (but very steep) of the “Saranac Six”. It is only about a mile each way, but it is defnitely STEEP! It is certainly worth the effort, as the views from the summit are really fantastic.
From the Summit of Mount Baker!
I apologize for the photographs that are lacking in this entry. I was writing on my Kindle, and experienced some technical difficulties – probably due more to my own limitations than those of the Kindle. I will follow this up with a better product, soon.
Me, with my friends, at High Falls Gorge!