Piggy Mt

Geoffrey's Piggy Mountain Report

Now that I've made it to Piggy Mountain I'll think of it as the crowning jewel of the Backlands.

Something about the dark appearance seemed ominous on the approach of the foot of the Mountain. The massive granite faces on the sides of it makes for an intimidating impression.

The trail was mostly easy to follow, although a bit wet close to the start of the ascent. It seemed very swampy around the perimeter of the Mountain. I blazed the path with orange tail tape, and felt obliged to do so as I ascended as well, for in this case one could reach the top without realizing the route that was taken! However, the way up was fairly obvious.

Piggy Mt
About halfway up I quickly realized I was already just as high or higher than any of the granite ridges I had previously been on in the Backlands. As I approached the top a snow squall began in earnest, with a fierce and cold biting wind. This also made for poor visibility, but this improved after a short while.

As anticipated the views were spectacular. The Atlantic side view was wonderful, although the foreground houses on Aaron's Way and Fortress Drive seemed oddly out of place. It was interesting to watch a container ship approaching, and to see how it emerged on the harbor side in a short period of time. How strange to look down on the granite outcrops that I usually paint upon, all arranged in seemingly little humps.

The top was a fairly small and flat area, with a tiny pond in the middle skimmed over with ice. The vegetation and soil was quite delicate, and I exercised caution to minimize erosion. This is an area that has not seen heavy foot traffic.
Piggy Mt
It was delightful to see little jack pines sprouting up since the area burned in 2009. They looked cheerful growing in rows here and there, or emerging out of crevices in the rock. It was evident from the burnt trees that there had been sizeable jack pines on the top of the Mountain. As I lingered near the highest point (judging from a metal surveying stake, as found in other high points in the backlands) a bald eagle appeared. It was like out of some fairytale or 'spiritual quest' as the eagle approached my position, and made several slow circles (quite low) before moving off. I couldn't help but see this as a blessing.

Soon the frigid wind and snow resumed. Although it was now early April I couldn't stop shivering and began to make my way back down. It was amazing how fast the wind subsided once off the summit.

I'm looking forward to more excursions to this special place.

Geoffrey Grantham
April 3, 2013
Piggy MtEd's Note: Geoffrey lives in the Purcell's Cove area and paints impressionist landscapes in oils. He often hikes and paints on location in the the Backlands, his many works conveying its beauty and moods. Some of his work can be seen at the Swoon Gallery. Geoffrey sent this report to a few friends & kindly agreed to my posting it on this site. - David P.
Purcell's Backlands Links