Cool Pond for a Hot Day

On Sunday we woke up in a sluggish mood and we almost stayed home to do house chores, but Lindsay really wanted to get out on the water.  We did a little research and found the perfect little pond to get out on the water on such a beautiful and scorchingly hot day: Horseshoe Pond.  We packed up Andrew’s canoe and Lindsay’s kayak and drove east and south down through Evans Notch in Maine.  This is a great Sunday drive kind of road and passes by our Favorite Mountain (we blogged about it here)–East Royce Mountain.  After the notch take New Road/Meadow Road to Union Hill Road/Butters Road to Foxboro Road to Horseshoe Pond Road.

As we drove in, we passed a couple of hiking trails and finally a kiosk where we grabbed a brochure for the Greater Lovell Land Trust.  But first, we had to get out on the water.  Common baskettail dragonflies zipped around us as we pulled our boats down to the water.

Even though there were many camps on this part of the horseshoe shaped pond, there were very few people.  We saw two kayakers, one party boat, and one swimmer all afternoon.  We quickly paddled our way past all the houses and docks to the southeastern edge and found a little spot to enjoy the scenery.  Lindsay caught another common baskettail and found a water snake hiding under a rock.  Andrew got a good look at a large snapping turtle swimming underwater and watched the loon.  The blueberries were not ready, but this looks like a good pond to come back to when they are ripe.

A water snake pokes his head out from under his rock hiding place.

Andrew backs into a little cove. A perfect spot for a short break.

We shared the quiet and beautiful day with this loon on Horseshoe Pond.

Lindsay watching for dragonflies. You can’t see it in this photo, but she is holding onto her net, ready to catch anything that flies by (or at least attempt to catch).

We tucked ourselves into a little cove and looked out at the lake.

A common baskettail dragonfly.

A strong headwind forced us to use our muscles on the paddle back to the boat launch.  We had circumnavigated the entire pond in no time at all.

Andrew canoeing along the shore of Horseshoe Pond.

The beautiful view of Maine hills above Horseshoe Pond.

After strapping the boats to the truck we walked back up to the kiosk to take the short trail to the viewing platform overlooking Moose Pond.  The trail was called Sucker Brook Trail, but we renamed it the Blood Sucker Trail after all the mosquitoes that buzzed and bit at our exposed arms and necks.

The kiosk at the start of the Sucker Brook Trail to the viewing platform.

The view toward Moose Pond from the platform.

This short interpretive trail is part of a larger network of hiking trails that weave through the lowlands of a conservation preserve immediately south of Horseshoe Pond, and would make for a pleasant return visit for some short walks.  The north shore of the pond is largely comprised of White Mountain National Forest Land that reaches down to the waterline, and the ponds charm is further accentuated by being surrounded by low hills and ridges that slope down to the shores. A look at the AMC map of the area reveals even more hiking trails winding through these small hills and valley’s, adding to the options possible for exploration.

On the platform.

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