No quicksand today, but does THIS look like a trail to you?
I stood there for a good 20 minutes trying to scrounge up the guts to climb over the granite (20-ft drop to either side before the first row of trees...). During this time, I was passed by seasoned citizens, parents carrying toddlers, Japanese students yapping on their cell phones, frat boys drinking Heineken out of bottles, and a group of mentally disabled adults on an outing from a group home. Everyone's just skipping along like they can't slip and die, except the residents of the group home--they were picking their way across holding the hands of their aides (note to self: next time bring hand to hold). Hi, I'm from Iowa--quiet, flat, SAFE.
Eventually my fat flatlander butt made it all the way to the firetower at the summit (Ranger Gord not included), clinging to my hiking stick like it was guns or religion.
Learn how the firetower was built here. See vintage photos here.
See MY photos HERE, dammit, since I thought I was going to get myself killed making them. :P I think I've identified the Fulton Chain of Lakes properly in the photos...
Wish there would have been more places to pull off and take photos from the road; I have never seen so much red in the foliage. Moose River, on the way home, wasn't nearly as red.
I also saw a black squirrel in Old Forge. According to the lavishly illustrated "Squirrels of New York" pamphlet I picked up at the state fair from the New York State Department of Environmental Convservation ("George Pataki, Governor"--hey, kudos to someone for not wasting money on needless reprints), black squirrels are grey squirrels.