Celebrating the Summer Solstice


Sun on the wall
Riding on a summer evening when the light is magical.

Today is the longest day of the year. In some ways it’s shocking; summer is only just beginning and yet starting tomorrow our days will get (marginally) shorter every day. But this is a special summer solstice because it’s also a full moon. And not just any moon; it’s a strawberry moon, so named by the Algonquin tribes because it occurs right at the height of the season when strawberries are harvested.

Loop ride
This ride kept us cool in the woods and took us down one of the historic colonial-era roads.

What better way to celebrate than by an evening ride? Zelda and I had a lovely, long ride this evening. We took a six mile loop that took us down historic the historic Estabrook Road trail (with a distance marker to the Old North Bridge), through the woods to come out at Hutchins Pond.

It was a warm evening, and yet cool in the woods. Surprisingly, because these trails are usually well used, it was empty tonight. The only people I saw were three mountain bikers, who surprised us deep in the woods but were kind enough to pull over to the side of the trail while Zelda snorted her disapproval.

I made one wrong turn out in the woods. It’s funny how well Zelda knows her way around and she pointed like a dog in the right direction. Honestly, at dusk, most of those wooded trails look the same and if it wasn’t for the touches of history — the old foundations, the lime kilns, and the stone walls — it would be easy to lose your way without the uncanny directional sense of my partner in crime.

Hutchins Pond
A glimpse of Hutchins Pond, which appears at the end of a the East Hubbard Tral

When I arrived back at the barn around 8:15, the sunset still painted the sky orange and it was pleasantly light.

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2 thoughts on “Celebrating the Summer Solstice

  1. What a beautiful story, Liz. I learned about the Strawberry Moon today, too. Just had friends marry on Saturday, and will tell them about it.

    Wishing you a lovely summer and at least several more moonlit rides!

    Jannalee in Oregon

    1. Liz Goldsmith

      This was the first time I’d heard the term as well. Very appropriate as we are in the midst of strawberry season here. These early evening rides are very special and we need to enjoy every one of them so that in December, when it’s dark and cold at 4 p.m., we have hope!

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