Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Sunday At Lake Hayward

(Lake Hayward Cove; photo by kathie 7-5-08)
Click on photos to enlarge

Sunday morning Alex and I headed out to Lake Hayward to see Stephen’s new cottage. Lake Hayward is the site of the Adams Family Road Race and the first site of Bacon Academy’s Cross Country Course back in the 70’s. Lake Hayward sits nestled among the Connecticut hills just south and west of Colchester. Our drive out here takes us past old farms long overgrown, some now turned into housing developments. Soon we enter the thicker forest that surrounds the lake and find our way to Stephen’s cottage in the woods.

(Cabin in the Woods; photo by kathie 7-5-08)

The cabin is rustic but quaint with an outdoor shower and patio. We walk up a moss covered path through ferns and mountain laurel to get to the cabin tucked into a hillside. The forest is closing in all around with trees of all sorts shading the place. It has a cozy, private feel to it, which we all like.

(Forested Patio; photo by kathie 7-5-08)

Stephen wants to practice for the Adams Road Race, so he devises a training relay where he and Alex will run segments with me driving the car and picking up each runner and dropping them off ahead. It works this way: Alex starts to run. I drive past him and drop Stephen off where he waits for Alex to catch up and hand off a piece of rubber tube being used as a baton. Then, Alex jumps in the car and I drive him ahead a short distance and he gets out and waits for Stephen to hand off to him. In this way we covered the 2.8 miles of the Adams Road Race and Stephen records the time for the first ever Adams Family Relay. Then, it is off to the beach for a swim in the lake.

(Stephen and Alex prepare to run; photo by kathie 7-5-08)

The lake water is so cool and refreshing. We all swim out to the dock and I fill my nostrils with the scent of the fresh, dark water. I feel its coolness slip past my body and I dive beneath the surface, rising a few feet later in the bright sunshine. We sit on the dock and warm ourselves, chatting about all kinds of things. Soon I dive in and swim back to shore, remembering I don’t have my cell phone with me and I need to know the time. On the way to the car I snap a few photos of canoes and row boats lying on the shore of the quiet cove.

When I return to the lake and prepare to swim out to the dock again my brother informs me there is a large snapping turtle in the vicinity of the dock. Stephen is a great tease, and though I know there are large snapping turtles in this lake, I figure he is trying to scare me and I don’t believe him. The more he insists, the more I think he is pulling my leg. Just as I am about to dolphin dive and start my swim out to the dock a large bumpy head surfaces only feet from the dock. I can just barely make out the hub-cap sized shell trailing behind it. Stephen and Alex start to laugh and stand smugly on the dock’s edge. Flabbergasted, I stay what I hope is safely in the shallows and watch as the turtle nonchalantly looks around before diving beneath the surface once again. Stephen and Alex wait a few more moments, then dive in and swim back to shore. We all decide we’ve had enough swimming for the day!

(Alex and Stephen prepare to swim; Photo by kathie 7-5-08)

Note: This is the first in a series of posts about my recent trip to New England. Look for additional posts within the next week or two with Stories from Sycamore Canyon interspersed.

Sycamore Canyon Update: It's sunny and hot here today. The humidity has dropped and the temperature is rising. Right now it is 96F in the shade. In the desert the prickly pears are ripening which means it's time to make prickly pear jelly once again. A Say's Phoebe has been hanging out around the house and seeking shelter from the sun underneath the covered patio on the blades of my patio fan. I am seeing House Finches, House Sparrows, Gambel's Quail, Mourning Doves, White-winged Doves, Curved-billed Thrashers, Cactus Wrens, Gilded Flickers, Gila woodpeckers, Turkey Vultures and Lesser Goldfinches on a regualr basis. I haven't seen the Sonaran Desert Toad since Saturday night.


Shelley said...

Love hearing about your trip - the 1st photo was especially nice with the calm water and the canoes on the shore.

bobbie said...

Would love to have seen your face when the turtle you had thought was just a joke surfaced in front of you.