Springfield is a town not to be missed if you like beautiful scenery and outdoor activities! Nearly 30% of the town is conservation lands and recreational opportunities abound. Toad and I did a little bit of off-roading, but my main goal was to get to Gardner Memorial Wayside Park.  The drive along Rt. 4A takes you past marshes, farms and beautiful mountain views…

Jeep (12 of 30)

Jeep (9 of 30)

Jeep (13 of 30)

Jeep (11 of 30)

Jeep (10 of 30)

Gardner Memorial Wayside Park is park of the Gile State Forest. Before I started down the trail to the mill ruins, I looked back to see Toad waiting dutifully for my return…

Jeep (16 of 30)

There was plenty to see, even before I got to the ruins. A small bright orange fungus caught my eye…

Jeep (15 of 30)

As did the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterfly…

Jeep (14 of 30)

I was quite happy to find several large patches of lady slippers. They never fail to make me smile…

Jeep (18 of 30)

As I reached the ruins, I started to step out onto a rock to get a better picture. Luckily, for me anyhow, I looked down first. I nearly stepped on a frog who seemed not to care a bit about me…

Jeep (19 of 30)

I was fascinated by the ruins. How did they get all of those stone stacked? What kind of mill had it been? Why was it left to fall back into the forest and stream? The wall was taller than me…

Jeep (20 of 30)

I back tracked until I came to the trail leading to the pond, but stopped to admire more of the wildflowers…

Jeep (17 of 30)

The trail was very easy to follow…

Jeep (28 of 30)

At one point, I came to sort of a clearing. As I looked out, I thought it was neat how one lone tree stood so much taller than its neighbors…

Jeep (21 of 30)

There was plenty of quartz on the trail and in the granite boulders…

Jeep (22 of 30)

Jeep (25 of 30)

I reached the pond and wondered how long the canoe had been there. It wasn’t going to take anyone fishing with the huge split down the side! There were several other jon boats chained to the trees. I wouldn’t have wanted to be the one to drag them all that way!

Jeep (23 of 30)

The pond was fairly calm and the breeze was just right…

Jeep (24 of 30)

I started back down the trail and saw the leaves of a trillium plant, the flowers long gone. What amazed me was the size. I don’t know how old this plant was but the leaves were huge…

Jeep (26 of 30)

I found several others, more the size of what I’m used to seeing. The leaves barely strong enough to hold up my penny…

Jeep (27 of 30)

In some areas, I saw what looked like a miniature forest of pines covering the ground. I don’t know what the plant is (I’m sure my friend over at New Hampshire Garden Solutions can tell us). Then, just a few feet away, there wasn’t a trace of them…

Jeep (30 of 30)

I also don’t know what was attacking the leaves of some of the saplings…

Jeep (29 of 30)

I made it back to Toad and decided to call it a day. I can only imagine the beauty of Springfield in the fall!

Thanks for coming along! See you next week!

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8 Comments on “Springfield”

  1. New Hampshire Garden Solutions July 7, 2014 at 11:41 pm #

    That plant looks like shiny clubmoss (Huperzia lucidula.) The yellow flowers could be blue bead lily (Clintonia borealis.)
    The growths on the leaves in that last shot are leaf galls caused by some type of insect. They don’t hurt the tree any.
    It looks like a great place to explore.

    • Touring NH July 8, 2014 at 9:43 am #

      I think you would enjoy it there! I know I did.

  2. mariekeates July 8, 2014 at 8:09 am #

    And there I was expecting Simpsons! 🙂 what a lovely trail.

    • Touring NH July 8, 2014 at 9:44 am #

      I don’t think Bart and that crew do much hiking. Lol

  3. marthaschaefer July 8, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    Lovely trail! So sorry I missed going with you. The scenery was just glorious and your shots as usual made me feel like I was tagging along. Thanks!!

    • Touring NH July 8, 2014 at 9:03 pm #

      Soon we’ll be traipsing together again! Thanks for coming by.

  4. gallivance.net July 18, 2014 at 5:10 am #

    Laura, those horses look like you’re the first person they’ve ever seen! It’s a beautiful pond, and I love your use of the penny for scale on the trillium. Is the 9th photo some kind of pitcher plant? ~Terri

    • Touring NH July 18, 2014 at 10:04 am #

      I always try to carry something to use as a scale. Just saying what size it is just isn’t the same. The lady slipper is part of the orchid family. They come in a few different colors, but pink is the most common. When I was in Millsfield, I saw a yellow one and several white ones. I have a few in my yard. I think it is a bummer they can not be transplanted. Digging it up will kill it.

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