Footbridge over the Ipswich River

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Bradley Palmer State Park, Topsfield-Ipswich line.

Town line

At the Ipswich-Topsfield line between Bradley Palmer State Park and Willowdale State Forest. The road it’s on is called Ipswich Road in Topsfield and Topsfield Road in Ipswich.

Brown Christmas

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Bradley Palmer State Park, Christmas Day, 2011.

Late winter, Bradley Palmer State Park

Went for a two-mile run at Bradley Palmer State Park this afternoon. The pond at the entrance on the Topsfield side (above) is still iced over, and there was a lot of slushy ice along the roadway heading out to the kiddie pool. Just goes to show that melting lags in the cool woods.

Not thrilled to be doing all the pre- and post-running stuff for just two miles, but I’m glad to be moving again.

Willowdale on a dry summer’s day

I’m not running because I’m trying to recover from a heel injury. I’m not riding because my bike’s in the shop with a snapped gear cable. So this afternoon I hiked through Willowdale State Forest in Topsfield (this link says it’s in Ipswich, but I stayed on the Topsfield side).

Because of the unusually dry summer, I was able to walk along trails that are almost always off-limits, including a particularly nice path that bisects a swamp. The horseflies and mosquitoes were obnoxious, but not overwhelmingly so.

Despite the dry weather, we’ve had some wild storms. Because of flooding damage, the footbridge that connects Willowdale with Bradley Palmer State Park is out — from the serious-looking chain-link fence that’s been built around it, I’d be surprised to see it reopen any time soon.

Anyway, hope you enjoy the photos.