Sunday, March 6, 2016

Bay Circuit Trail Hike Report - NOGO On The NOBO

Another cold Saturday morning, another hike on the Bay Circut Trail. This time the plan was to hike 17 miles from Reynolds Landing in West Bridgewater (where I ended my hike last weekend) to Shepherd Forest in Pembroke. That plan went up in smoke when I could not obtain a ride from Pembroke to West Bridgewater. Pembroke does not have taxi service and the nearest Uber was 30 minutes away. I could have waited for the Uber but decided to start my hike from Shepherd Forest, walk North, and do an out and back of 10-12 miles total.

All my previous hikes on the BCT have been in a southerly direction. There are two reasons for this. The first being I live closer to the northern terminus than the southern terminus so it just made sense to start the trail up north. The second, and more compelling reason to hike southbound is because the trail guide's directions are written for a north to south hike. In hiking jargon, I am called a SOBO because I am hiking the trail SOuthBOund. If I were hiking the trail south to north I would be a NOBO. 

I've heard from other BCT hikers that going north can be confusing and more difficult. I now know first hand that this is true. It wouldn't be a problem if the trail was well blazed but it is not. Trying to interpret the guide in the opposite direction was challenging to say the least. I was able to stay on trail with some minor detours but forward progress was very slow. I decided to turn back after four miles. My first hike NOBO hike was a bust.

 Walking a canal dredge pile next to a cranberry bog.

 Cranberry bog in Pembroke.

Crossing the Pembroke - Hanson border.

 This benign looking house in Camp Kiwanee looked creepy to me when I passed it.

Snow-covered trail in Hanson Town Forest. 

 Stormy looking sky.

 Sun breaking through.

Nathaniel Thomas Mill and dam built in the 1690's.

 I could have used a lot more of these.

I learned a valuable lesson. Stick to SOBO! 
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