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Dog Bone Ridge

The Train

Last week, the Goldens got turned around by snow ball accumulation on the undercarriage. This week it was much colder and with an additional 15-20 inches of snow it was perhaps ideal conditions.

Temperature was around 25 with winds at 15 gusting to over 30

Snow Balls


We set out for DogBone Ridge this morning. 14″ of fresh on the ground and we were able to strap on the snow shoes on the front porch and head off right from the house.

Leaving the back yard

We were not out more than twenty yards when Sally got trapped, twisted and went down. Lucky for her there were a couple of Goldens to help in recovery.

Down she goes


The trail for the most part follows skidder track which also carries some melt.

We were not that far into the days adventure when we realized there was a developing problem.

Some significant snow balls were starting to accumulate on the fuzzy undercarriage of the pups.

We had to reverse – head back and clean up the Goldens.

The cleanup involved warm water and bathtubs and resembled a scene from a Disney movie before long.


SnowBalls from Michael Hassey on Vimeo.


Memories of Balsams


For ten years, from 1999 until our last visit in 2011, going to the Balsams was our family winter tradition. Most of the time it was just Sally and I, but on two occasions we were joined by the Brewers for some quality winter holiday family time.

The last seven days


Been away from Mittenstock –

Building a barn in North Yarmouth.


This was a week ago;

And seven days later –

Black Cap and Black Flies


Done this before – several times. Hit the trailhead around 6PM and the mountain is likely to be empty. There was one other car in the lot, and we crossed paths as we were ascending. We had the mountain to ourselves.

Well, not completely to ourselves. The black flies were in FULL bloom. Clouds. Hoards. Masses.  Thank god for head nets and petrochemical topical barriers.  They were thick.

Still worth it. It was Sammy’s first time on this old standard of a hike. We had dinner in the bear den with great views.  There was little lingering – more like get it done and get down. We did not stay for sunset.

Off Menu


Hobbs Brook –

Barely on the map – yet so worth the visit.

If you love waterfalls, dogs, blue skies and sunshine… Well…


HobbsBrook from Michael Hassey on Vimeo.

Sundown Again


Or Boulder Loop Trail…

This could be the first time around it since the burn last year..

Up the west side trail – to the view then back. Three easy miles with great views.

Recent clearing and cutting activity affords views towards rainbow slabs and table mountain
The fire burned for a couple three days or so. November 13th 2016 was when it started. It took a rainstorm to put it out.

I watched the burn last November from Mittenstock and grabbed some of the action in a time lapse I shot on the day. At times the house was quite smokey smelling as the wind took the smoke right down the valley towards us.

From the front porch at Mittenstock you have no trouble spotting the overlook at the top of boulder loop trail. It is five and a half miles distant. I shot a bearing on the compass before heading out so I might reverse the bearing and definitively photograph Mittenstock from the top. This was the result.

In the right third – lower down from middle you can clearly see Mittenstock with the two skylights and the stove pipe between them. Click into the attachment and you will have no problem full size…


The day was nice while we were out – Raining as I post this, but we got the obligatory poster shots..


Caught this vulture cruising the updraft from the cliffs.


Looking west towards east ledges and Pasaconway.

Lady Slipper Season…


Back to the car. Still a little between seasons. The area was not crowded at all.



The view from the deck has improved..

First clear morning since the cut.

I shot this from a tripod on the deck. It is a composite HDR two frame panorama composed from three frame single stop HDR images on the FX sensor of the D810. I believe that nikon raw uncompressed is around 70 mb / frame – roughly 420MB of raw data. The featured image for this post is a massively reduced JPG. The high res jpg here by comparison. Still compressed. If you click that link, let it load, and on most browsers, click it again you will get the compressed yet full size composition.  For the truly interested, I exported the composition to DNG and you can find that here. Do a save as on that link and load it in whatever you use for DNG’s . Thems a lot of pixels.

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I ran a single axis (pan) motion head on Saturday and Sunday this holiday weekend. This was the result.


At the border

A go-to hike on days like this…

4 mile along the river.

Found some snow – swam the pups – had a great hike

Understanding being here now


This was one of the best videos to come across Vimeo in a while – at least for me – now…