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Climbing Mount Jo 7/13/12
Wiz Kids Field Trip July 2012
Story begins at the TOP -(Scroll down to read)


Photo by M.G.

The hikers decided to wake up their Camp Do-wha-cha-wanna counselor and trail master, Mike, to begin the day's mountain climb, so they marched around the house playing their trombones, and finally marched into the house and knocked on his door. Surprise! Mike had been awake for some time and was waiting for them.


Photo by J.G

Wiz Kid Director Fred was supposed to go with them, but he had discovered his grandfather's handwritten marching band music from the 1930's and was determined to start putting it on his computer to use with the East Orange Marching Band next season.


Photo by Elijah Goode

So Mike left with his two eager first-time mountain climbers and drove to Adirondack Loj on Heart Lake at the foot of Mount Jo.


Photo by Elijah Goode

This is a great mountain climb for beginners. It takes about an hour and you get a great view of all the Adirondack high peaks that surround Mount Jo. Click on the trail guide map to see it enlarged.


Photo by Elijah Goode

From the base, they begin climbing almost immediately, but it is easy at first. The trails are well marked and maintained by the park rangers. In most of these photos, you will only see Mike and Qua-Fiki, because Ee-Gee-Fiki is taking most of the photos. We'll show him when we can.


Photo by Elijah Goode

Much of the climbing is over rocks and boulders that are in the former stream bed that serves as a trail up the mountain. Good climbing shoes or boots are a must! Every once in a while, stop and turn around to see how high you have climbed and to enjoy the scenery.


Photo by Elijah Goode

Decisions! Decisions! The trail splits in two. Mike decides to take it easy on the beginners and guides them up the Long Trail. It's longer, but it's easier. Maybe next year they will be ready for the more rugged Short Trail.


Photo by Elijah Goode

The Long Trail may be easier, but that doesn't mean it doesn't feel good when you stop and sit down to rest.


Photo by Elijah Goode

As they get closer to the top of the mountain, they pass by some huge boulders that were deposited on the mountain by the glacier that covered this entire region during the last great Ice Age, millions of years ago.


Photo by Elijah Goode

They finally reach a very important trail marker, to their great relief!


Photo by Elijah Goode

There is still more climbing to reach the top, but now they can see that there is an end up ahead, and this part of the climb is much more fun.


Photo by Elijah Goode

Instead of always looking up, now they can look down and see far away to the other high peaks of the Adirondack Mountains. Mike wants to eventually climb all of them, and perhaps our Wiz Kids will follow in his footsteps some day.


Photo by Elijah Goode

From the top you can see where you started, at the edge of Heart Lake below.


Photo by Elijah Goode

You also get a panoramic view in all directions of the tallest mountains in the Adirondack Park, including, off in the distance, Mount Marcy, the tallest mountain in New York State.


Photo by Alquadir Marsh

We finally get to see Wiz Kid Ee-Gee-Fiki in front of the camera, sitting on top of his world at the moment. Off in the distance, the mountain with the rocky face is called Mount Colden.


Photo by Elijah Goode

When you sit on the edge of the mountain, looking off into the distance, you feel like you are all alone, even though the National Park, and this mountain in particular, are filled with visitors from all over the world looking at the same natural wonders and enjoying the scenery.


Photo by Elijah Goode

At last, Mike gathers up his crew and begins the descent back to the bottom of the mountain.


Photo by Elijah Goode

If gravity is your enemy while climbing up the mountain, it can be your friend while going back down, providing you don't get going too fast or slip and lose control of it. But the trip back down is always fast and easy, so there are no more photos... until we get to Rainbow Lake... but that's another story.

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