Rensselaer, N.Y., to Saco, Maine

A short drive today, so by three o’clock I had set up my tent, and started walking up the beach. Very light rain fell off and on, but that didn’t reduce the number of people on the beach by very much. In the short stretch of beach between Ferry Beach Camp and Conference Center, and the entrance to Ferry Beach State Park, I passed a dozen families set up with towels, three different guys casting bait in hopes of a striper coming by, a dozen people walking up or down the beach, and half a dozen people tossing a frisbee around.

As soon as I got away from the beach, and onto the trails in the woods of Ferry Beach State Park, I didn’t see another human being. Probably the mosquitoes kept them away. There is plenty of open water in the woods behind the dunes this year, plenty of places for mosquitoes to breed. And then I heard a Veery singing, that strange downward spiraling song that is one of the most haunting and beautiful bird songs I have ever heard: a bird song worth driving three thousand miles to hear.

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