Labor Day weekend was a decidedly mixed bag this year, weatherwise. Friday was fabulous, though lightly populated. A new couple from Athol MA made a repeat visit, as well as a couple from the Catskills who had first come to the Ledges last year and were returning for the long weekend. Other than that, there were a few regulars, but the incipient start of school seemed to depress turnout, even though conditions were just about perfect. Saturday, on the other hand, was muggy and humid, but with occasional non-severe showers. Camaraderie was excellent though. Weather on Sunday was supposed to be about the same, which was good because that's the day the annual Ledges fall cookout/cornroast is held.
Sunday dawned clear and sunny, but by afternoon skies were overcast. About the time I arrived there was a fairly intense shower, which resolved in about 30 minutes, after which some sun poked through for a while. Despite the weather, a lot of people showed up and once again the camaraderie was good. Food was distributed, beer and margaritas were consumed, and the cooking fire was started. Some folks with foresight put up lean-to's made of tarpaulins.
Just as things were getting going, though, the rain came again - with thunder, and with lightning. People crammed under the lean-to's. The storm didn't seem to want to leave - rain was intense, prolonged, and although the food was good (it's always good), after an hour of eating corn and watching dramatic beach erosion take place, people were getting tired of the rain. I waited for a lull and left at about 5:00, but I was astonished to find that the creek which crosses the trail was a torrent, and had to use the bridge upstream. Even then the rain did not let up. Oh well, I suppose there's always next weekend.
September and early October are often great times to go to the Ledges. It's definitely quieter than in full summer, but there's more likely to be sun and there is plenty of real estate. Cliff diving is usually out of the question because the water level is too low, but since all the teenagers are back in school, this doesn't take place much anyway.