Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Sunshine with Sammy on Mt. Israel

Sammy soaking in the sunshine at the summit of Mt. Israel
With a slow start to Spring and having been away from the trails over the past several weeks, I was excited to soak in the sun recently with Sammy en route to the summit of Mt. Israel (2,630 ft.).  My hiking companion has been waiting very patiently to see his report from our trek along the Wentworth Trail that took place back on May 18, 2013.  Since I have been busy with caring for my almost 16-year old dog's health issues the last few weeks, I am grateful for Sammy's patience.

All smiles along the Wentworth Trail
Three-year old Sammy is a sweet mix of shepherd and hound who is searching for his second chance family.  He is very much a ladies man and continues to make great strides with the men in his life.  Sammy greeted me as if he had known me forever and was very comfortable and well behaved during the car ride to the trailhead.  

Braving the black flies
He is doing remarkably well in his foster home and working to overcome his suspicions of some men he encounters.  Knowing that Sammy was not totally comfortable with all men and may bark at them, I chose an out and back trail to a peak that would be less crowded than its more popular neighboring summits of Mts. Percival and Morgan.  Taking an out and back route with a dog who is overcoming some fears lessens the number of unfamiliar people and places that he will encounter. 

Enjoying the views from above
Our plan worked well, and we were fortunate in that the first fellow hikers we encountered on the trail had previous experience with a dog who had some fears of men.  This friendly couple and their well behaved pair of Labrador retrievers kindly gave a little bit more room on the trail as Sammy and I made our way past them.  Sammy was fine, and I made a point of staying between him and the unfamiliar man on the trail.  The rest of our journey was filled mostly with black flies and only a handful of other hikers.  Sammy did well walking past others on the trail and even tolerated a rather boisterous off leash dog that quickly ran up to greet us as we approached the summit.

On the ride home
Our return trip was similarly uneventful, and Sammy is looking forward to more hikes in the future.  Of course, I always hope that each of my hikers finds a new home before they have an opportunity to visit the trails with me again.  However, I would welcome the chance to spend another sunny day with Sammy.  An album of photos from our hike is available here.

To learn more about Sammy, view his Petfinder.com profile here.  If you would like to support other rescue dogs in need through becoming a foster home or by making a donation, visit Almost Home Rescue.

See you on the trails!