Madame Sherri Forest, W. Chesterfield, NH, 7/9/16

Madame Sherri Forest is about 20 minutes from Brattleboro, over some dirt roads. The nearly 500 acres forest offers good hiking trails, and an entertaining legend. The forest is named for the eccentric Madame Antoinette Sherri. Madame Sherri, who worked as a costume designer for the Zigfield Follies in the 1920s, had built her country “Castle” in the woods of Chesterfield. She became famous (or infamous) for the parties she threw for visitors from the city and was said to have driven about the town during the summer wearing a fur coat (and nothing else). She died in 1965 at age 84, after her castle was destroyed by fire in 1962. Doubleclick any photo to enlarge:

We passed a small pond with a loud bullfrog, crossed a little bridge, and took the trail to the right to see what remains of Madame Sherri’s castle, the lovely old stone arches and winding stairs:

What a sight this must have been in its day. But the trails themselves are lush and beautiful in their own right, and we headed up to Indian Pond. It was more uphill than expected.

Here’s a fork in the trail:

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Hmmm…. we chose the 1/2 mile route to the Pond:IMG_8167 IMG_8168

Little boardwalk over drought-dried stream bed:IMG_8169

An unusual cairn greeted us at a bend in the trial:

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On and up to the pond:

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Indian Pond, with a beaver dam on the far edge of the water:

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A little rest, a little snack, and back down the way we came where we noticed a fairy ring of mushrooms:

– the full loop was longer than we needed, after a busy morning at the art museum which had this nice sculpture out front:

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Good overnight 3-state trip to Greenfield, Brattleboro, and Madame Sherri for great music, art, nature, and friends.

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