Winter Saranac 6er Ampersand Mt. Wed, Jan 1, 2014, Jack Whitney - Happy New Year! We had a cold, icy start - the temperature was 5 degrees! There was not enough snow for snowshoes so it was time to put on the microspikes. Toward the top it was not only icy, but steep. We made it to the summit where we encountered a little bit of wind. We took several pictures and then retreated down to the bridge where we ate lunch and exchanged stories. We headed for our vehicles and drove to Saranac Lake where we decided to climb Baker Mt. It was a quick hike up in dropping temperatures. We made it to the summit, took a quick break and then decided to hike the loop trail back to our cars. 6 Participants: Eric Kimmelman, Dan Pekrol, Francis Willis, Ethan Willis, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Annual Buck Mountain New Years Day Hike Wed, Jan 1, 2014, Reg Prouty and Bob Aspholm - We worked our way up the back side of Buck from the East side this year using our crampons, as there were icy spots. We arrived on the summit just about lunch time and found a spot out of the wind for lunch and a quick mini-concert from Reg on the pocket trumpet. 8 Participants: Reg Prouty, Judith Goralski, John Goralski, Larry Glasheen, John Susko, Ania Gaguine, Bob Aspholm, and Thomas Kerr.
YMG - Tabletop with possible Phelps add on Sat, Jan 4, 2014, Jen Shepherd - It was a frigid early morning start with temps below zero as we left the warm cars behind at the Loj. Only a few people were signed in ahead of us for Tabletop. We set a healthy pace to get warmed up and were removing layers before reaching the Algonquin junction. Our break at Marcy Dam was cut short by a frigid wind. It was turning out to be an incredibly gorgeous day despite the cold. I wanted to linger and take photos but the cold kept me moving. Shortly after passing the Phelps junction, anyone hiking in the area this morning was startled by a sonic boom ... something I've never heard before! At first we thought it was an avalanche. Not long after our loud scare, we passed a friend on his way back from Tabletop just short of the junction. We got a view and weather report before heading our respective ways. The trail to the summit of Tabletop was soft powder and nicely broken out by the few people that had gone in ahead of us. As we climbed higher and turned around, the view we were treated to was absolutely stunning. We couldn't have asked for a more crystal clear day! I was numb from the cold and feeling battered by the continuous wind determined to steal any warmth I could produce but I couldn't help stopping to turn around frequently and admire that view! The summit was rather blustery, as promised, but it didn't stop us from getting the usual summit photos and lingering an extra minute before a hasty retreat! Okay, others lingered and I flew back down the trail faster than I've ever moved before desperate to reach a slightly more wind-less lower elevation while the rest of my poor group followed. Lunch was a quick break back at the Tabletop junction before continuing back towards Phelps. Three people were still full of energy and ready to enjoy the second peak of the day, I sent them on while I accompanied the remaining two hikers back to the parking area. Reports from Phelps were stunning views and an enjoyable pink sky from the setting sun during the trip back to meet up with me. Shout out to the Albany chapter for braving the overly windy exposed summits of the Macs, some of whom I had the pleasure of waiting with at the Loj for our remaining hiking parties. There were six participants on this trip including a first timer, who not only did very well, but also got his first two winter High Peaks ... congrats Dominic! Big thanks to Wayne for accompanying the Phelps group while I hiked out. Thank you to everyone for coming out and making for a memorable day on the trails! 6 Participants: Jen Shepherd, Leighann Helson, Wayne Richter, Dominic Romani, Dan Kemp, and Mark Oliviero.
Winter Saranac 6er Challenge McKenzie and Haystack Mts Sun, Jan 5, 2014, Jack Whitney - We were originally planning to do McKenzie and Haystack this day; however, due to a less than ideal weather forecast we decided to climb Scarface instead. We started the day wearing our microspikes due to the icy conditions. It was a gradual start, which after a mile or so started to climb up to the shoulder, then another climb up to the summit and then the flat walk over to the viewless real summit. After a short break we headed back down to our vehicles and tried to stay ahead of the storm (unsuccessfully) back home. 8 Participants: Dan Pekrol, Francis Willis, Ethan Willis, Rich Holm, Eric Kimmelman, Dan Stec, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Monday Geocache Mon, Jan 6, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Today we decided to explore a new nature preserve in Stony Creek. Dean Farm Heritage Trail is right next to Stony Creek Historical Association on Murray Road in Stony Creek. There's a new sign and trailhead in the parking lot, which was a sheet of ice the day we were there. We really didn't need showshoes and micro spikes were really just needed in the parking lot. There were three new caches that we were there to hunt. One involved sliding on our backs under a bridge (glad the ground was frozen), another one near a bench along the trail, and the third was near a nice wooden viewing platform over Stony Creek. There were a lot of bridges and platforms here. The trail was both on open rolling hills, which were nice and sunny that day, and through the woods. It took us about an hour to find the caches and leisurely walk throught the preserve 3 Participants: Mo Coutant, Sarah King, and Licia Mackey.
Tuesday Treks Tue, Jan 7, 2014, Mo Coutant - We actually went out Wednesday instead of Tuesday since it was the worst day of the 'Polar Freeze.' It wasn't balmy on Wednesday, but without much wind and lots of layers the single digits felt fine. We explored the trails in the Rush Pond Area of Queensbury. It's the wetland you see across from the Great Escape as you are driving south on I87. John Strough, Queensbury Supervisor, and friends have been volunteering their time and building lovely foot bridges and advocating for a recreational trail through there for years, maybe even decades. This past year they've made some real progress and we were all impressed! 8 Participants: Mo Coutant, Sarah King, Licia Mackey, Andrew Paolano, Bill Schwarz, Joanne Szot, Johanna and Laurie Williams.
Northwest Bay Uplands Sat, Jan 11, 2014, Jayne Bouder - This hike was switched from rainy Saturday to partly sunny Sunday. After tramping down the snowbank between the road and trailhead for Nick's 4WD truck, we found the trail ablaze with many newly added trailmarkers (Now the challenge of finding them has moved south of Pole Hill Pond). We were glad to see the original canvas strip markers were still left, as relics or maybe because they're so hard to spot. And there's signage- State Mountain has been added to the fun! So now the tract has 2 1/2 mountains with views, along with one beautiful pond and (more) signage indicating that there is a reasonable portage to it from Padanarum Road! It sure has changed a lot since last year! (Maybe next year there will be a plowed parking lot and a sign-in box). Beautiful Place! We had a great day, all day! 3 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Jean Holcomb, and Nick Ringelberg.
Winter Saranac 6er challenge Scarface Mt. Sun, Jan 12, 2014, Jack Whitney - This trip was changed to McKenzie & Haystack since we climbed Scarface last week. There were spring conditions down low but as we started to climb McKenzie the ice changed from soft to hard. We encountered several steep, icy sections, which we carefully worked our way through. Then there were several ups and downs to the summit. We had to use a rope just before the summit to scramble up and down. It was very windy on the summit, so it was a quick exit off. All the look-outs were blocked off due to the icy conditions. It was a steep scramble down and then we headed over to Haystack, the second summit of the day, and the final Saranac Six for Dan Monroe and me. Arriving back at our vehicles, we then drove into Saranac Lake so that Dan and I could ring the bell and sign the register. 8 Participants: Dan Pekrol, Francis Willis, Ethan Willis, Rich Holm, Eric Kimmelman, Dan Stec, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Jan 14, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we decided to explore a little known trail at Moreau State Park. The trail is actually across the street from the entrance. We wound up wandering around most of the time on the trail and only lost it for a little while. Good thing there were plenty of us to look for markers. We were wishing we'd brought our GPS and probably would have laughed at our paths doubling back on each other each time we lost the trail! We had a great finish roasting hot dogs and warming up apple packets in the fireplace at the warming hut! Can't beat that! 9 Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Nance Kimball, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Lica Mackey, Bill Schwarz, Johanna and Laura Williams.
Catamont Cliffs Sat, Jan 18, 2014, Jayne Bouder - Long playful otter slides and tracks were along our way down to Fly Brook, clear in the dusting on top of the crusty frozen snow. Our tracks looked more laborious. The for-many-years-dependable deadfall jam across Fly Brook was down to one icy log ending with a waterfall, so we scouted upstream a-ways to a fallen large yellow birch, with enough crown and ice chunks to get us across dryly. We crunched most of the way up in the shade of Catamont, then climbed into the sunshine, and slush- thin enough to glue it and leaves to our points as we navigated a second, taller steep hill. Two bounding deer up the slope made easy of what was, for us, the adventure of the day. Lunch was leisurely while we calculated daylight left, and bid the Cliffs adieu. We had an enthusiastic conversation going, about BMW motorcycles and touring, on the way back. Beautiful day, better than forecast! 3 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Rachel Sloan, and Keith Strack.
Haystack Sat, Jan 18, 2014, Steve Mackey - We got to the 'Garden Trailhead' around 7:20 with around six vehicles, and unfortunately, there wasn't even one parking space left. We then decided to drive all the way to the LOJ and hike Haystack via the Van Hoevenberg Trail. It was going to add a couple of miles and quite of bit of elevation, but there wasn't a lot of options. The trail was icy and everyone wore their micro spikes until we were most of the way up Marcy. We all stopped at Indian Falls and were treated to spectacular views of the MacIntyre Range. Some of us bushwhacked a short cut to the range trail and luckily it was pretty short, because it was also really thick and ugly. We then snowshoed the rest of the way to little Haystack. There were climbers coming back that advised us to switch to crampons, so we all got to use all our gear. There were clouds slowly coming in, but we still had outstanding views in every direction. Skylight and Marcy were especially spectacular. We all lined up and raised our hiking poles and Heather came through our arch and officially finished her long quest. I just finished filling out her winter 46 form and I noticed that she did four winter peaks back in 1997 when she was 9 years old. It was a great day and many thanks to all my old and new friends that came along. 12 Participants: Jungle Mosher, Wayne Richter, David Charles, Cecilia Elwert, Jen Shepherd, Rick Lennox, Bernie Yelle, Ben Yelle, Patrick Reilly, Mike Fuller, Steve and Heather Mackey.
Saranac 6er - Ring The Bell Sun, Jan 19, 2014, Jack Whitney - Change of plans. Since we had finished the Saranac Six the previous week, we decided to climb a fire tower mountain this week. Our choice was Mt. Adams and what an adventure it was. Powdered snow at the bottom and treacherous ice on the upper half of the trail. Going up was an adventure. Coming down was exhilarating; a feeling that still lingers a week later! A tough but good day in the mountains. 4 Participants: Dan Monroe, Dan Pekrol, Pat Desbiens, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Jan 21, 2014, Mo Coutant - If we waited for the temps to get into the teens, we wouldn't have gone out the past couple of weeks! Undaunted by the temperature hovering just above zero, we bundled up and walked along the trails in the Skidmore North Woods. This has definately been a winter season for grippers and bundling up! We've gotten pretty good at bundling and were all warm to even sweating by the time we were done. Most of us finished the outing with a nice lunch at Uncommon Grounds followed by a quick trip to the Northshire Bookstore. 5 Participants: Mo Coutant, Liz Gee, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, and Joanne Szot.
Pyramid & Gothics Sat, Jan 25, 2014, Steve Mackey - First the bad news, the view from Pyramid is one of the finest views in the High Peaks, and we got zero views. Now all the good news, the skiing was way better than expected and we got to wiz out in record time. Sydney got her first High Peak and her first Winter High Peak at the same time. Rainbow Falls was its usual spectacular self. There were all kinds of recent beaver activity to see along the Ausable Road. We heard a Great Horned Owl on the way out. Last but not least, the climb up Pyramid from the Sawteeth intersection is still as steep as advertised, and the wind was as strong as advertised. 4 Participants: Mike Fuller, Jesse Cole, Sydney Morrell, and Steve Mackey.
Stillwater Locks Eagle Watch Hike/Snowshoe Sat, Jan 25, 2014, Rich Crammond - The snow was flying and the cold air was biting but the eagles where nowhere to be seen. We dressed warmly so a good time was had anyway. Highlights of this outing were glassing other smaller birds, and shaking off them cabin fever blues by hiking along with good people and being near the old home town. 4 Participants: Jean Holcomb, Saidie Crammond, Debbie Crammond, and Richie Crammond.
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Jan 26, 2014, Jack Whitney - We went to Black Mt., staying close to home since it was another cold day. There was about 3 - 4 inches of snow on the ground. It was one of those days where you didn't feel like getting out of bed but after conquering that roadblock, it was a good workout getting to the summit. We didn't stay long due to the cold and decided to head back down the same way we came up rather than making it a loop trip. 4 Participants: Charlotte Smith, Dan Pekrol, John Susko, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Jan 28, 2014, Mo Coutant - We'd gotten a couple of inches or so of snow on the weekend, so we had to try out the skiing while we could. We headed up to Cronins in Warrensburg to ski along the Hudson River and check out the ice jam. It's a beautiful place to ski and so generous of them to allow public access. We also enjoyed all the bird houses and stands put up for Osprey or Eagles to use for nests. We skated around the course a couple of times (Steve) and a little less for the rest of us. Then we drove up to RT 28 along the river to check out the river ice and then back to The Willows in Warrensburg for lunch and paper snowflake making. 8 Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Liz Gee, Bill Glendenning, Eric Krantz, Licia and Steve Mackey, and Rick Morse.
Monthly Geocache Outing Mon, Feb 3, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - This month we had a nice walk around Palmer Pond. We just needed our grippers this day. We found all the caches we were looking for on this adventure. Thanks to Sarah's tools and determination we were able to chip the ammo box out of the ice that had built up on the bottom and partially on it's sides. She was not going to leave it unsigned!! Great day out as always! Participants: Sarah King, Mo Coutant, Licia Mackey
Tuesday Trek Tue, Feb 4, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we decided to go up to Lake George and do a mixed outing. Some of us attempted to skate on the oval that Duffy's has been clearing while the other 1/2 of the group XC skied up the east side of the lake for awhlie. The oval had been perfectly smooth the week before, but I didn't take into account that in between was winter carnival and some dim snowmobilers would drive on the skating oval and ruin it! We made our way across the lake to another area that was being cleared and skated there before returning to meet up with the skiers who reported better conditions than expected! The we walked over to Cafe Veros for a nice lunch by the fireplace! Perfect day..sunny, no wind, good company! Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Bill Glendenning, Nancy Kimball, Licia Mackey, Sydney Morrell, Bill Schwarz, Joanne Szot
Colvin & Blake via The Ausable Club Sat, Feb 8, 2014, Michael McLean - This trip was changed to Sunday the 9th. Wonderful winter conditions allowed a nice ski up the Lake Road and over Lower Ausable Lake as well. The Carry Trail was unbroken fluffy powder of 1-3 feet in depth over significant ice, making the 1.1 miles up last for almost 2 1/2 hours. A mostly sunny morning allowed for wonderful views all the way over to Blake. We did not attempt Colvin due to hiker fatigue and also one participant turned around and would have a significant wait in the parking lot. The trip down the Carry Trail was quite quick, as well as the wonderful ski back down the Lake road. 4 Participants: Rob Roy, Wayne Richter, Cindy and Mike McLean.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Feb 11, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we changed things up and went for our trip in the afternoon in hopes of increasing our odds of seeing a snowy owl in the Ft. Edward Important Bird Area (IBA). They've been spotted there regularly this winter, but to increase our chances again we were lucky enough to have Laurie LaFond join us. She's very involved with the Friends of the IBA and gets lots of reports of sightings. Laurie first got permission from a local landowner to walk along a snowmobile trail on their property (thanks Tom & Gretchen). We got some exercise and warmed up but did not see much bird activity. On our way back to the cars, Laurie got a call from the amazing bird photographer Gordon Ellmers who had spotted a snowy nearby! Off we raced to the spot. Right before we got there it left its perch but flew across the field next to us and perched on top of a tree. We all looked through binoculars and spotting scopes and got a great view! Gordon waded through the snowy field in his sneakers and a camera with a huge lens. The photo in the gallery was taken by him … not from one of our official participants. Everyone was thrilled to see the snowy fly by and perch then hang out! 17 Participants: Doug and Judy Beers, Jerry and Nancy Burke, Mo Coutant, Liz Gee, Bill Glendenning, Eric Krantz, Laurie LaFond, Licia and Steve Mackey, Kathy McMahon, Joy Munro, Sheri Shevy, Joanne Szot, Edna and Neal Van Dorsten.
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Feb 16, 2014, Jack Whitney - We hiked two fire towers on this trip. Rondaxe and Blue Mts. Rondaxe were first. The trail started climbing right from the get go. A short trip to the summit - took our pictures, a short break and on the road to the next mountain. We arrived at the trailhead to Blue Mt., we thought full of energy, until we started to climb and noticed that our pace was slower (this was our second mountain of the day!). We arrived at the summit and once again were greeted by a stiff breeze. We made our way to the cabin out of the wind, but it was cold in the shade. We had a snack and headed back to our cars, tired but happy. 6 Participants: Eric Kimmelman, Dan Pekrol, Francis Willis, Ethan Willis, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Basin and Saddleback Sat, Feb 22, 2014, Mike Fuller - We arrived at the Garden at 6:20 and were lucky to get the last few spots left. A gear check, sign in and we on our way. It was micro-spikes to JBL then snowshoes. At Slant Rock we fueled up and took Erica's new Facebook picture WOW! Then off to Shorey Shortcut; it was great to see it broken open. With the first views of Basin, Jesse was really enjoying the Winter DAKS. The Range Trail yielded another break, then off to Basin. We met hikers coming back warning us of icy spots. Soon we were all on the summit, some pictures, and off the back side where we bushwhacked to avoid the icy drop off. At the foot of Saddleback we were met by two other hikers and we all switched to crampons. The rocks were glare ice so we went to the right and found a spot Leighann called 'The Chimney.' Rick tried to go first but couldn't reach anything. Then the other two hikers appeared above us they used ice axes but said it wasn't easy. I tried to throw them my rope but it was too windy. As I was perched on a rock I hear a voice, 'grab onto my meager trunk and pull yourself to safety.' It was coming from a little alpine tree. I yelled to the others, 'I'm about to do something crazy.' I grabbed and flailed and up I went. Soon after letting down the rope they were all up on top. As I looked back with the coiled rope in my hand it said to me, 'let's get with the others before your ego explodes.' Thank to the other hikers for making sure we got up alright and taking our group picture. We had a great hike and were out by dark. Congrat's to all that needed Basin and Saddleback winter. 5 Participants: Leighann Helson, Erica Holbrook, Jesse Cole, Rick Lennex, and Mike Fuller.
Heart,Bear, and Rock Pond Loop Sat, Feb 22, 2014, Reg Prouty - We had a good workout as about 80% of the loop was not broken and the snow was deep. We took turns and had a break at Bear Pond and lunch at Rock Pond. Some visited the cave after spending time at the huge toppled boiler. 6 Participants: Reg Prouty, Mary Alice Nyhan, Don Washburn, Jim Charboneau, Marsha LaPointe, and Kate Huestis.
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Feb 23, 2014, Jack Whitney - It was a warm day to hike Hurricane Mt. from Rt. 9N- we tried to start from the East; however, the plowed road ended at the snowplow turnaround, so this left us the alternative to hike from Rt. 9N. The trail was broken out, although it was a little icy. There was even some exposed soil where the sun hits the trail. When we got to the summit, the wind was howling. We took some quick pictures and headed down out of the wind to the junction where we took a quick break and headed on down. Another good day in the woods. 4 Participants: Dan Pekrol, Dan Monroe, Francis Willis, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Feb 25, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we did a short steep hike near West Mtn. It probably wouldn't have felt so steep, but we were in snowshoes and hadn't had too much practice in those this winter. We've had the snow, but have been doing walks or XC skis. We were out of practice on snowshoes! Anyway, we hiked along a nice ridge and then down to another spot where we saw a few deer cross the trail. This was on the steep uphill section. At this point, three of the group turned around due to a wobbly knee and a fuzzy head. The rest of the group did some equipment adjustments and led by Steve made it to the lookout and enjoyed some great views. 8 Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Sarah King, Licia and Steve Mackey, Kathy McMahon, Joanne Szot, and Laurie Williams.
Hoffman Sat, Mar 1, 2014, Jayne Bouder - We had a nice day, a big bump to climb, great views, and deepening snow as we trudged up Hoffman's four mile long ridge. Nearing the lumpy top, the GPS goaded us on. Nick spotted the canister brackets, sticking out of the snow-covered half down summit tree, and the elements were kind to us as we celebrated and recouped there for a while. We were all plenty whupped, but happy to follow our broken trail downhill, and the Big Pond trail out by dark. Great Day! Great group! 5 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Wayne and Laura Dewey, Jeff Manns, and Nick Ringelberg.
Iroquios Sat, Mar 1, 2014, Mike Fuller - We had two groups. Justin, Rob, and I started about a 1/2 hour earlier. With a good hard trail we made our way to Avalanche Pass on Micro Spikes. Once on the lake, we stopped to look up at the shear walls of the Pass. Awesome! The Pass makes a great 'end of the snowpack hike' just after the winter season is over and is well worth it. Ahh, now the climbing starts. We fueled up and switched to snowshoes. A hiker was coming down the trail and warned us of strong winds on the ridge. This was my second time up this trail this winter; it's a great calf burner. Soon we were at the foot of Algonquin. I looked for our other group, but no sign of them. On Boundary we looked back and saw three hikers heading off Algonquin, then spotted Jesse's red shell. Justin, Rob, and I went to Iroquois where Rob got another winter peak. On our way back we met Jesse, Leighann, and Erica. They went with Jesse to Wright; he needed all three peaks. So I went back to Iroquois with them and Justin and Rob headed to the Loj. On Iroquois we took pictures and headed back to the foot of Algonquin where we fueled up on Erica's blueberry coffee cake and hot cocoa. Over Algonquin we could barely walk with the wind blasting us. Once in the treeline we couldn't believe we didn't get blown off the mountain. After that it was a great hike out with plenty of daylight. Congrats to all who got Iroquois and to Jesse for his first three peak day. Good Job! 6 Participants, Justin Lefco, Robert Roy, Jesse Cole, Leighann Helson, Erica Holbrook, and Mike Fuller.
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Mar 2, 2014, Jack Whitney - We drove to the Catskill Mountains with a goal of climbing two of the fire tower mountains. We drove to the farthest away, Red Hill. After a short climb of about 800 ft. on a hard-packed trail we arrived at the fire tower. We spent a short time for a snack at the cabin adjacent to the tower before heading back down, jumping in the car and driving to Woodstock to climb Overlook Mountain. Again, we had a well-packed trail for the 2.5 mile gradual climb to the summit (we had to be ready to quickly jump to the side of the trail because of a number of people who were using sleds to rapidly descend the mountain). We took time to explore the ruins of the hotel, take pictures and enjoy the view from the lookout. 4 Participants: Francis Willis, Dan Monroe, Pat Desbiens, and Jack Whitney.
Botheration Pond Loop Sun, Mar 2, 2014, Bill Schwarz - Cancelled.
Giant and Rocky Peak Sun, Mar 2, 2014, Steve Mackey and Rick Lennox - It was cloudy and snowing very lightly when we arrived at the trailhead. The trail was well packed with about an inch of new powder on top, and we were to use microspikes for the entire day. With the trail well packed and smooth, with only a few not too difficult icy spots, we did well on our ascent. The views were limited by the clouds, especially as we got higher, but we did get to see Noonmark, a bit of Round Pond and some of the Great Range. The immediate surroundings were beautiful with the new snow on the conifers and the contrast of the open slides against the vegetation. We stopped for a snack just after the "bump," met the group of four who had preceded us on their way down, and caught up with Jim Schneider and Mark McLean, who had started up ahead of us. Visibility on Giant was about 100 feet so after a brief chat with Jim and Mark, we headed for Rocky Peak Ridge. As we left the summit, just as a tease, the clouds thinned enough for the sun to throw a weak shadow, The descent was certainly easier and faster than in summer with, for the most part, a ramp-like, packed trail with three inches of fresh powder through which we were the first to pass. We had one tricky spot where the trail makes a sharp left to pass along a rock ledge, then drops down. The rock wall to the left was very icy and the section ended with a three to four foot drop at the end with little if anything apparent that could be held on to. Rick decided that we could go perhaps 12 feet down a very steep slope before the ledge with the assistance of the trees. And so we did, without too much trouble. The clouds and mist in the gap between Giant and Rocky Peak Ridge were quite impressive. The wind was light on the summit and we stopped for lunch. Then Rick discovered that sheets of ice could be popped off east facing rocks. These were perhaps ¼ to ½ inch thick. While pieces could be pulled off, they tended to shatter if you just looked at them hard. Still, we tried to get the biggest pieces possible. We did pretty well with some about 1 by 2 feet, then Rick got a giant piece about a foot high and four feet wide. After Steve photographed him holding it, he actually managed to put it back on the rock. As Steve said, "Leave no trace camping." Arriving at the road before 3:00, we went to the Noonmark Diner for a bite to eat. Sitting in a warm place with warm food after a few hours outdoors in the cold certainly felt good. 3 Participants: Wayne Richter, Rick Lennox, and Steve Mackey.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Mar 3, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Today we decided to head to the Inman Pond Trail off Sly Pond Road in search of a few different geocaches. Not being sure how the trail would be, we all carried our snowshoes but ended up just using grippers, as the trail was nicely packed down for us. First on the list was a puzzle cache, which entailed solving a puzzle at home to get the coordinates to the cache. Sarah and Larry did this and shared the location with the rest of the group for a quick, winter friendly find. We continued on to another cache, just before a bridge over the trail. Next we continued on the trail, taking the left fork toward Buck and Pilot Knob. Our destination was a cache called All Things Aviation. This was a reference to the airplane that crashed on Pilot Knob in the 1960s. This cache was a bushwack but luckily, the 'trail' had been broken for us the previous week by some fellow geocachers. We found this one and headed back to the trailhead. We decided we would return once the snow melts to seek the site of the air crash and cache located near it. Great day out as usual. Treats were provided by Licia. 4 Participants: Mo Coutant, Larry Eaton, Sarah King, and Licia Mackey.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Mar 4, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we walked along the Feeder Canal trail from the beginning to the Rt 9 bridge. From there we headed into Glens Falls for a warm up beverage at Coffee Planet. The trail was surprisingly bumpy. I thought it would have had more snowshoe traffic to beat it down, but the snowshoers all seemed to make their own individual trails and not really pack it down flat. So the walking in grippers was a bit more difficult than we expected and we opted for travelling the sidewalks of Glens Falls back to the parking lot at the beginning of the trail. It's good to have options! 7 Participants: Mo Coutant, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Gwenne Rippon, Diane Sante, and Bill Schwartz.
Baldhead and Moose Bushwack Sat, Mar 8, 2014, jayne bouder - cancelled
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Mar 9, 2014, Jack Whitney - We journeyed back down to the Catskill Mountains today - Mt. Tremper. As with last week, the trail was hard-packed and we were able to climb wearing our microspikes. The sun was out with brief light snow flurries. We stopped at the Baldwin Lean-to for a few minutes and then continued on to the summit. This mountain has 2,030 ft. of elevation to climb, but with the switchbacks it's a gradual climb, adding to the enjoyment of the day. Finally, we reached the final lean-to with the fire tower just beyond. Great views at this time of year without climbing the tower. 7 Participants: Ethan Willis, Francis Willis, Eric Kimmelman, Dan Monroe, Carln Briggs, Pat Desbiens, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Mar 11, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we did a mixed outing of XC skiing or walking depending on what the participants brought. It was our first outing in warm weather since the fall and our first time to the Wilton Wildlife Preserve this 'season!' The temperature was in the 40s, but there was still a base to ski on. The skiers reported icy conditions just at the very start, but after that nice conditions. Good thing Steve brought his backpack, since he filled it up with layers of shedded clothing. The walkers hiked on the other side of the road and stopped at the fire tower, the old scout camp, and to observe the 'snow fleas' that came out in the warm weather. The next day was even warmer … followed by a snow storm! 10 Participants: Mo Coutant, Carolyn Curren, Liz Gee, Sarah King, Licia and Steve Mackey, Kim Moore, Bill Schwarz, Joanne Szot, and Laurie Williams.
Allen 'The Big Nasty' Sat, Mar 15, 2014, Mike Fuller - Well 'The Big Nasty' really turned out to be a great hike this winter. After we geared up, the enthusiastic group headed out. Thanks to a new Hudson River bridge and a nice frozen Lake Jimmy we were off to Allen. Being hike leader I often sweep, making sure we don't let anyone fall behind. At breaks I would check with people out front to make sure that the same person wasn't breaking all the trail. Word was the trail was good and broken out. Little Miss Opalescent yielded a nice snow bridge and a break where I told the story of my first time to Allen in 2001. The area was more open then, and hike leader Ron Lester often used his compass to keep us headed in the right direction; there was no broken trail on that day. A fuel up at Skylight Brook then up Allen Brook slide where views started. At the summit lots of happy climbers and a winter Allen to check to off their list. We all enjoyed the great butt-slide where we dropped over 600 feet in a matter of minutes. The group spread out heading back as Adams Fire Tower kept watching us on our way out. Suddenly just before the Hudson crossing the group stopped, I went ahead to see what the problem was. A polar bear displaced by climate change was hunting for seals on the ice of the Hudson. I took off my pack and took out a bottle of coke, I had seen this on TV. Tossing the bottle to the side of the trail, the bear went for it and the rest of the group made it to the safety of the parking lot. I looked back to watch the bear remove the cap, take a drink, look at me and raise its clawed paw as if to say "thanks.' I raised my hand and said "don't forget to recycle.' We parted ways. The Big Nasty lives. A great day spent with great people. 12 participants: Rachel Lane, Davis Hawkowl, Dan Forbush, Joe Walsh, Leighann Helson, Lucas LaBarre, Jesse Cole, Erica Holbrook, Wayne Richter, Beth Hesseltine, Haley Bitner, and Mike Fuller.
Winter Fire Tower Challenge Sun, Mar 16, 2014, Jack Whitney - For the last hike of the winter season, it was a sunny but cold start. The trail was broken out except for the last quarter mile where it became slow going due to the steepness of the trail and the deep snow. Congratulations to Dan Monroe for completing the winter fire tower challenge this day! 5 Participants: Francis Willis, Ethan Willis, Eric Kimmelman, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Colvin and Blake Sun, Mar 16, 2014, Steve Mackey and Rick Lennox - We had a blast from the past, with Jim Appleyard (Apples) joining us. He said he hasn't been on an ADK hike in 20 years, so we were in rarefied territory before we even got started. I had thrown in my old Sherpa snowshoes because I assumed we were going to be breaking trail all day. Even though it had snowed on Thursday and the hike was on Sunday, someone had already broken the trail all the way to Blake. Several of us skied the Ausable Road, but we ended up going up the Gill Brook Trail (because it was broken), and in hindsight, the skiing part was probably too short to justify the extra equipment. The trail conditions were excellent, and it was the most snow I have been on all winter. The views from Colvin were spectacular. The view (obviously) is very similar to Pyramid (which is one of my favorite winter peaks). The hike over to Blake didn't look too bad, until we got a look at the col between us. The horizontal distance wasn't bad, but the descent was not pretty (as well as what comes after that). We found a sunny spot on the summit of Blake, and had a nice lunch break. I wandered around the sunny spot, and managed to find a waist deep spruce trap. Luckily I only found one. The trail out was A-number-one, excellent butt sliding. (The fact that the Sherpa's hardly had any crampon on the bottom, might have been a factor.) We had one slide near the top that almost sent us flying into the trees, but luckily we all made it. We also had a few slides where you could grab a strategic tree and pivot around a 90 degree turn. It seemed a lot like a ride at the Great Escape. Afterwards we all went out for dinner at DeCesare's, in Schroon Lake. 6 Participants: Rick Lennox, Rich Elton, Denise McQuade, Joe Babcock, Jim Appleyard, and Steve Mackey.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Mar 18, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we walked along the trails in Saratoga State Park. We needed our grippers once again especially in the uphill sections of the trails. It was a great day to be out, but with snow and winter temperatures it was hard to imagine that we're about a month away from when they normally stock the creek with fish! Maybe we'll be back again for that big event! 8 Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Kim Moore, Joanne Szot, and Neal Van Dorsten.
OK Slip Falls and Hudson River Gorge Sat, Mar 22, 2014, Nick Ringelberg and Jayne Bouder - Three of us started out just after dawn, 7:30 am, on 12 inches of fresh powder. The first half mile was on the Ross Pond trail, and the last sign in was two weeks previous. After 0.6 mile we turned off (three surveyors tapes on a Beech Tree) onto a rough DEC flagged course over untouched, deep snow, heading NE on a mostly level terrain through a mature hardwood forest. After another 0.4 mile (as the flagging became erratic) we took a slightly northerly course to avoid a Spruce & Hemlock hill with signs of a deer yard. There were lots of deer tracks, and we didn't want to unnecessarily spook them. 0.4 mile later we passed below a beaver dam, with beaver meadows above and below us. There, we also crossed a fresh American otter trail-slide, going left for 50 feet and right for hundreds. No otters in sight, though. After another 0.3 mile, we reached the Northern Frontier Camp Road crossing. We'd expected to find the usual ski and snowshoe tracks coming in on the camp road, from RT 28, and turning toward the falls at the sign. But, again, all we had in front of us was the pure undisturbed snow. So we broke more trail, another mile of it, down the old logging road, and finally reached the OK Slip Falls Overlook! And then the 2nd one! The Falls were frozen solid- 250 feet of milky ice hanging from the lip of the cliff where the stream normally cascades over. It was noon and the trip had taken us over four hours, having to break trail for three miles through a foot fresh powder on top of the fragile crust of another foot, at least. We broke carefully left, following the gorge edge till we arrived at the top of the Falls, where it drops off the ledge. And got a fantastic view of the OK Slip gorge and Kettle Mountain, a mile to the north on the other side of the Hudson River! Walking up (frozen) stream, we crossed the bridge above the falls on handrail-level snow, climbed back up to the gorge edge trail on the far side, and kept going until it began its descent toward the Hudson River. That was also our 'high water mark,' where we decided to turn back. The SW wind had increased to the 30-mile-an-hour gusts that had been forecast, the clouds began to separate, patches of blue sky were showing, and for the first time the sun shown down on us and the gorge, briefly. That was when we spotted the little martin spying on us about 20 feet away, up a spruce tree down the slope at just about eye level! The sun coming out had framed him, in the middle of our gorge-eous landscape! Just in time to go - we said goodby to the martin and headed back. The trail out took us only half the time that it took to get in, snowshoeing in our snowshoe holes. No new signs of the otter, but, as we passed the deer yard, we noticed that one of the deer had come down to inspect our tracks before returning to its boreal world. Back to the car by 6:30, we reflected that we'd had a very pleasant and quiet day, out breaking trail just like the critters in the woods. Very satisfying! Total distance: 6.8 miles. 3 paticipants: Nick Ringelberg, Jayne Bouder, and John Schneider.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Mar 25, 2014, Mo Coutant - With the continued cold temperatures, I thought it might be a good time to go up to Berry Pond before the melt turned the trail to a stream. We were able to hike up the trail in microspikes and only occasionally postholed slightly. Once at the pond, we were able to walk out on the pond following a snowmobile trail and walk right up to beaver lodges and underneath the nest left behind by herons. Most of the crazy beaver activity was covered by snow, but we were still able to see some freshly chewed trees! 10 Participants: Mo Coutant, Jerry and Nancy Burke, Liz Gee, Eric Krantz, Licia and Steve Mackey, Kendra Pratt, Neal Van Dorsten, and Laurie Williams.
Prospect Mtn. from the South Sat, Mar 29, 2014, Reg Prouty - The climb ended up being more like a B hike than a C as the snow was quite deep and after leaving the Lake George Recreation land and moving onto State land the trail needed to be broken better, even though some snowshoers had gone up there in the earlier days of winter. It took three hours to reach the summit and we were greeted with several snowmobilers and only one other hiking couple who came up from the village side. We had lunch and Reg gave everyone a mini-concert on the pocket trumpet as usual. The return trip got us back to the parking area in 1/2 the time. All in all it was a great sunshiny day to be out. 4 Participants: Reg Prouty, Bob Bedore, Tim Ward, and Susan Burkley.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Apr 1, 2014, Mo Coutant - So instead of hiking the Great Range and being back by dinner (April Fools) we strolled around unfamiliar sections of Saratoga. We started in Congress Park and made our way past new high rise construction to Beekman Street to explore the Art District. We stumbled across the Gideon Putnum cemetery, found the oldest houses in Saratoga thanks to Joanne, and new parking garages, coffee shops, theaters, a place to charge your electric car thanks to Paul, and a great place for lunch thanks to Nancy! Collective knowledge was key!! 13 Participants: Doug and Judy Beers, Nancy Burke, Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Mary Alice Nyhan, Dianne Sante, Bill Schwarz, Mary Sommers, Joanne Szot, and Don Washburn.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Apr 7, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Participants: Mo Coutant, Diane Demetriou, Larry Eaton, Sarah Gray, Sarah King, Licia Mackey, Don & Marjorie Moeller
Tuesday Trek Tue, Apr 8, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we walked along the Harry Betar Walkway along the Hudson River. The river was clear of ice but little mini icebergs were still floating downstream. Both the upper and lower sections of the trail were ice free which was nice though! We had quite a few birders in the group who were able to identify some birds for us...including bluebirds, canada (not canadien) geese, some ducks..ring neck? bufflehead? I can't remember! I'm not a birder, although I did spot the bluebird! After a nice walk, most of us went up to Coffee Planet for a drink or bite to eat and to continue the many conversations started along the walk! Participants: Judy Beers, Barbara Bell, Stewart Brown, Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Jim Ralston, Irene Sammons, Bill Schwarz, Joanne Szot
Bullhead Mountain Bushwack Sat, Apr 12, 2014, Jayne Bouder and Jean Holcomb - We had a warm, sunny day! The marsh was beautiful, water crossings fun, the bushwack surprisingly easy, even near the top, and the snow depth manageable. Great views! We found Dan's mid-ridge overview of Puffer Pond and Mountain, and saw Peaked and viewed the High Peaks just north of the summit- their snow caps made them easy to spot against the blue sky. Nick & Hanna had been very patient about the pace, and asked permission to dash off to their 2nd destination, Bullhead Pond (not near our mountain) so they could claim 2 Bullheads in one day! Nick R and I hung back like anchors, and we still were all out by 4 pm. Great group! Great day! Participants: Hanna Becker, Jayne Bouder, Jean Holcomb, Nick Lanzillo, Nick Ringelberg, and Maureen Roeth.
Denton Wildlife / Hudson Crossing Sat, Apr 12, 2014, Rich Crammond - What a nice day to be on the trail. We enjoyed it so much that we hiked around Denton twice. The highlight of this outing was seeing a large osprey along the Hudson River. It was nice also to walk across the Dix bridge to a long range look at former Governor Dix's Pine Needle Camp in Thomson Mills. (Nice people to do hikes with). Participants: Charlotte Smith, Bill Glendening, Kathy Bechard, Tim Bechard, Rich Crammond.
Cat & Thomas Mountains Sun, Apr 27, 2014, Lorraine MacKenzie - The clouds were traveling in a southly direction down Lake George which is unusual. It rained (very little) but the weather forecast was correct - unusual also! What was not unsual was being outdoors experiencing great views with wonderful people. 19 participants Margie Litwin, Sandy Yellen, Ann Munday, Bill Carpenter, Bill Schwarz, Leo Demers, Sue Atwell, Sue Booth-Binczik, Sue Keely, Chris Ide, Joanne Walczak, Colleen Downing, Karen Burka, Nate, Neal Van Dorsten, Tim & Kathy Bechard, Shelly Burke, Lorraine MacKenzie
OK Slip Falls Sat, May 3, 2014, Nick Ringelberg - Starting at 9:30am on a pleasant springy day, 9 of us tramped through the woods where Trout Lilies and Purple Trilliums were just poking out blossoms for our bushwhack. Arriving at the OK Slip Falls at noon, we saw an impressive flow of water cascading over one of the tallest falls in the Adirondacks. After a short lunch break at the falls overlook and posing for pictures, we continued upstream to the rock shelf at the tip of the falls where there was a great view of Kettle Mt. Crossing the bridge just above the falls and taking the trail up a hundred feet that serpentined to the ridge above the falls, we could look down into the OK Slip Gorge where there was still thick layers of ice that remained from winter. We followed the trail that takes you to the Hudson River about a half mile until we came to an overlook with a view of the Hudson river Rapids. At 1pm, we were just in time to see whitewater rafts moving down the river below us. We followed the camp road out to Rt. 28 and our parked cars, arriving at 3pm. 9 Participants: Michael Benatto, Peter Bishop, Josh Epstein, Frank Fell, Donald Foley, Nancy Kass, Peg Mangano, Kathy Ryan, and Nick Ringelberg.
ADK Headquarters Work Day Sat, May 3, 2014, Mo Coutant - Thank you to all the Glens Falls-Saratoga Chapter members who came to the ADK Lake George Property Work Day! The grounds look so much better! The staff really appreciates our efforts and I'm sure the public driving by as well! Thanks again and if you want to join the committee or want to go up before the next work day let me know and I'll find a job for you!
Spring Bird Walk - Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park Sat, May 3, 2014, Rich Speidel - Despite cloudy, cool weather, we discovered a fine variety of birds throughout the morning. Bird migration has been slowed by the late winter and cool spring, so we were glad to see some species for the first time this season, including black-throated blue and black-throated green warblers and kingbirds. Also, a small bird with yellow and black around its head flew across a clearing. It landed and called nearby, and we were able to confirm the hooded warbler. This was an exciting find, as hooded warblers are rare in our area. Including six different woodpeckers, plus blackbirds, thrushes, sparrows and others, we had a great field trip with 48 species. 8 participants: Barbara Bave, Gerry Cuite, Thomas Cuite, Lindsey Duval, Louise Golub, Jim Myers, Edna Van Dorsten, and Rich Speidel.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, May 5, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Today we headed over to Lake Luzerne to look for geocaches at two spots. The first one was a series of six geocaches on a snowmobile trail behind the American Legion building on 9N. They were doing some logging in the area but we managed to stay ahead of the heavy equipment. After finding these, the group headed over to 4th Lake Campground. The campground hadn't opened yet so we parked beside the gate and walked in. The last of four caches that we looked for was around the far side of the lake. We walked the campground road, admiring some of the new restroom buildings here and enjoying the weather. 10 for 10 for us today and a personal milestone for Sarah; her 5,000 find. 7 Participants: Mo Coutant, Diane Demetriou, Todd Earl, Larry Eaton, Steve Gray, Sarah King, and Licia Mackey
Tuesday Trek Tue, May 6, 2014, Licia Mackey and Sarah King - This week Sarah, Licia and Todd took over as leader since Mo's daughter was getting her braces on ... and she remembered too late to switch it to another date! This week the trip was up Prospect Mountain from the Lake George Rec Area. We had warm sun, puffy clouds, a light breeze, and perfect temps (60s) for our Prospect hike from the L.G. Rec trails. As we approached the waterfall on the Guard Help Way trail, Todd explained these streams are the headwaters of West Brook. They were the original water source for the Village of Lake George. The Vireos, Blue Jays, Black-throated Green Warblers and Pileated Woodpeckers called. Coltsfoot and a (Downey?) yellow violet were our only wildflowers in bloom. Our geocaching expert, Sarah, replaced a cache (found on the trail) at its appropriate coordinates. George was our hike photographer as Joanne was absent. We reached the top after one-and-a-half hours and about 2.7 miles. (A good estimate, Mo.) We had clear views of Ellen, Lincoln, and Killington Mts. to the east. Our snow covered Adirondacks from Algonquin east to the Great Range were in view intermittently. A quick snack refueled us for our decent. As three stand-ins for Mo, we did pretty well. We didn't loose anyone! As a matter of fact, we gained two; Bill and Rich. 15 Participants: Sue Atwell, Bev and Robert Burnham, Paul Dietershagen, Rich Drew, Todd Earl, Sarah King, Peggy Knowles, Licia Mackey, Bob Powell, Kendra Pratt, George Sammons, Bill Schwarz, Bill Was, and Laurie Williams.
Sleeping Beauty and Bumps Pond Loop Sat, May 10, 2014, Reg Prouty - The gate to the road to Dacy Clearing was still locked; we had to walk the extra distance, but it just was a pleasant spring day and we did not mind it. The summit was fine for lunching, pictures and trumpet playing and we also visited the true summit before descending to Dacy Clearing. Although others had signed up, I guess they were afraid of the weather. But it cleared up just before they hike so they missed a great day on the mountain. 2 Participants: Reg Prouty and Michelle Viscariello.
Spring Bird Walk - Pack Forest, Warrensburg Sat, May 10, 2014, Rich Speidel - We started two hours later than planned to allow rain to pass through the area. By mid-morning it was sunny and warm, and the birds responded. We came across several small clusters of warblers, some in a single tree. Yellow-rumped warblers were most common, along with brief sightings of pine, magnolia, Blackburnian, black-throated blue and black-throated green warblers. A highlight for our group was an extended view of the Cape May warbler, an uncommon migrant that may be missed from year to year. We were also glad for the return of a pair of loons to Pack Forest Lake, one of 38 species identified during the day. 11 participants: Tillie Freeman, Jack Freeman, Mark Janey, Laurie LaFond, Licia Mackey, Joanne Morrison, David Morrison, Max Pine, Richard Pine, Edna Van Dorsten, and Rich Speidel.
Pharoah Mountain Sun, May 11, 2014, Lorraine MacKenzie - What a beautiful day! It was clear, cool and just enough breeze to keep the black flies at a minimum. Visibility was so good we criss-crossed the summit and were able to see for miles in every direction! 12 Participants: Sandy Yellen, Susan Atwell, Josh Epstein, John Habermehl, Klaus Sommalatte, Jacques Roeth, Maureen Roeth, Mark Janey, Jeff Braunstein, Jack Whitney, Dan Monroe, and Lorraine MacKenzie.
Tuesday PADDLE Tue, May 13, 2014, Mo Coutant - It was great to get back on the water! This was the first paddle trip of the season and due to the weather forecast and other plans, we paddled in the morning along the wetland or fen of Glen Lake. We try to get there early in the season before the weeds grow too much. Beavers had been trying to block the entrance to the wetland, but the Glen Lake Association tries to make sure they aren't successful! We meandered around and wound up following a Mutant Giganutula Great Blue Heron (a new species I just made up). Maybe it's because we haven't seen them in 6 months, but it looked huge! Much bigger than I remember them! Marian got a picture with her phone that's in the gallery, but I'm sure it doesn't do it justice! We also spotted turtles and redwinged blackbirds and random fish. I needed Jim there to ID those! 8 Participants: Maureen Coutant, Tina Crook, Paul Dietershagen, Bill Glendenning, Sharon Kendall, Lynne Silverberg, Maureen Tuttle, and Marian Walsh.
Pitchoff Sat, May 17, 2014, Wayne Richter and Chris Greco - What a fun day we had! All of the rain expected for the hike day cleared out before we arrived, giving us as fine a mid-May day as one could hope for in the Adirondacks - not even black files! We had stunning views all along Pitchoff's ridge as we took our time going from prominence to prominence. It was a bit tricky with a remnant patch of ice and a steep drop between the last two summits. We had lunch on the northeast summit, then headed back the way we came along the ridge to enjoy the views once again. On our way back down to the trailhead, we were treated to carpets of trillium and trout lily. 8 participants: Karen Burka, Colleen Downing, Chris Greco, John Habermehl, Susan Keely, Wayne Richter, Keith Strack, and Joanne Walczak.
The 29th Fire Tower Sun, May 18, 2014, Bill Carpenter and Jack Whitney - This was a long drive but well worth it to climb the most recent fire tower trail that has opened to the public. The trail starts off relatively flat and then climbs 1200 ft. in the final mile to the open,rocky summit where hikers are rewarded with beautiful views in three directions (you can get a fantastic view in the fourth direction from a rock outcrop shortly before reaching the summit). It was an ideal day for a hike, although bug spray and/or a bug net were a good thing to have in your pack). Good group, good weather, a day in the woods ... does life get any better? 17 Participants: Laura Fiske, Cheryl Agris, Daniel Kane, Peter Bishop, Rich Holm, Dan Stec, Denise McQuade, Susan Troll, Dan Monroe, Pat Desbiens, Margie Litwin, Sandy Yellen, Ray Bouchard, Tricia Lockwood, Jeff Brannstein, Jack Whitney, and Bill Carpenter.
Tuesday Trek Tue, May 20, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we hiked up Hadley Mtn to see the wildflowers, fire tower, and great views. The black flies were just coming out and were much worse a few days later when I returned with my family. We were also lucky to go when we did since we saw trout lily in bloom, the painted trillium, rose twisted something, plus many other wildflowers which were much harder to find just 5 days later. Timing is key for spring hiking! Now bug spray is going to be the key! Once on top, the view was fabulous and some of us even ventured into the cab of the fire tower and others went on the path less traveled over to the 'garden.' 12 Participants: Bev and Bob Burnham, Rene Clarke, Mo Coutant, Rich Drew, Liz Gee, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Kendra Pratt, George Sammons, and Laurie Williams.
Henderson Lake Sat, May 24, 2014, Jayne Bouder - no calls
Spring Bird Walk & Climb - Pack Forest, Warrensburg Sat, May 24, 2014, Rich Speidel - Due to rain on May 24, this outing took place on May 25. The wait was worthwhile, as we had fair weather and good bird activity. The start of our walk featured an excellent close-up of a magnolia warbler and its vivid black and yellow striping. Other highlights included Blackburnian warblers, least flycatchers, and two Canada geese with six goslings. At the beaver pond, a large raptor was perched over the far shoreline. It soon took flight, dropped into the marsh, and then flew away. Even from a distance, we could confirm the bald eagle by its thick bill, flat wing span, and whitish head/tail. We had a clear view from the scenic overlook on Ben Wood Mountain, and concluded an enjoyable outing with 43 species. 8 Participants: Charles Bergmann, Patricia Brennan, Lindsey Duval, Cathy Hall, Licia Mackey, Terry Peek, Edna Van Dorsten, and Rich Speidel.
Tuesday Paddle Tue, May 27, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we actually went out on Wed to get a better day, but wound up paddling in a light mist for some of the trip. We went to the Stewart Pond Reservoir to see the eagle nest and hopefully an eagle. Since it was looking a bit dreary and we only had 4 of us braving the weather, we decided to move our cars and launching point closer to the nest in case we needed to make a speedy get away! We got on the water near the nest but didn't see any activity, so we paddled up to the Conklinville Dam and saw some mergansers? Then we paddled back and saw the eagle flying over near the nest before landing out of sight. Lucky for us, some crows started harassing it and it flew into view again and rested on a branch just over the nest so we had a great view. We stayed and watched for quite awhile before heading out after a great trip. Participants: Mo Coutant, D Demetreau(sp??), Bill Glendenning, Licia Mackey
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Jun 2, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Today we headed to Dacy Clearing parking lot to start our geocaching adventure. Luckily, the road to Dacy Clearing was open and Mo had her Rav 4 so we drove in to start our hike. Our destination was a seldom used hiking/snowmobile trail, marked as the Erebus Mountain trail. It was really more of a marked bushwhack, but Sarah had a previous geocacher's track log on her GPS which made staying on 'the trail' a lot easier. We began by hiking to Bumps Pond, where we spotted the well hidden Erebus Mountain sign on a trail to our left. The trail was very muddy, lots of blow down, with occasional faded, old trail markers but also lots of geocaches to be found! We followed the trail along the base of the mountain, in a clockwise direction to Fishbrook, where we found a pleasant rock to enjoy our lunch and of course homemade goodies from Licia. We headed back to Bumps Pond and then back to Dacy Clearing. We hiked for 6 hours, did 7 miles and found 14 caches. A great day as usual. 4 Participants: Mo Coutant, Sarah King, Licia Mackey, and Don Thorn.
Tuesday Paddle - LG Eagle trip Thu, Jun 5, 2014, Mo Coutant - After moving the trip to Thursday to get a better day, Tuesday turned out to be fine! But luckily so did Thursday with blue skies, water as smooth as glass streaked with yellow pine pollen, and a comfortable temperature! We paddled out to the island and were treated with seeing an eagle posing for us on a branch of a pine. He didn't seem bothered at all by us as we tried to get photos and then hung around trying to see if we could spot anyone in the nest. Some said they did see movement. We paddled around the island and returned to find that he was still hanging out. We bid him farewell and finished our paddle and a wonderful outing! Thanks Eric! 9 Participants: Bill Bechtel, Mo Coutant, Charlie Czech, Bill Glendenning, Eric Krantz, Laurie LaFond, Licia Mackey, Andrew Paolano, and Laurie Williams.
Balm of Gilead Mountain Sat, Jun 7, 2014, Rich Crammond - Due to unreadable trail signs at Willam Blake Pond we had to play it safe and cut this hike short, but we went to a real nice place on 13th Lake for lunch. Reg played a few tunes on his pocket horn so it was all good for a day in the woods. Some bugs but not too bad over all. 5 Participants: Reg Prouty, Bill Glendening, Neal VanDorsten, Ania Galuine, and Rich Crammond.
Cedarlands Paddle/Hike Sat, Jun 7, 2014, Jayne Bouder - cancelled
Wakley Mt. Sun, Jun 8, 2014, Jack Whitney - Nice sunny day, warm temperatures, great views. Only one downer - those darned black flies which chased us off the summit. Down lower, they weren't as bad so we took a break and hiked out to the beaver meadow with great views of the fire tower and watched lots of salamanders and tadpoles in the remains of the beaver pond. A great day was had by all. 8 Participants: Leo Demers, Kathy McAuley, Daniel Kemp, Bill Carpenter, Sandy Yellen, Ania Gaguine, Karen Burka, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday PADDLE Tue, Jun 10, 2014, Mo Coutant - This was our first evening paddle of the season. We've done a few other paddles during the day due to forecast or scheduling conflicts. Traditionally, we start the season with a trip from Lake Luzerne upstream to 2nd Lake or as far as we can make it. We're about a month later than normal which had an advantage of giving us more daylight which was appreciated when we got out at 8:30 after almost 3 hours on our adventure. And...it was an adventure. We didn't have 3 hours of paddling as we had some down time trying to figure out how to get by obstacles. The beaver dams were mostly broken apart, so we could paddle though those. The illegal dam built by a homeowner along the stream was also partially broken down but made the water too forceful to paddle against, so we had to drag our boats there and at another spot where the water was moving too fast and it was too shallow to really dig in. But our main challenge was how to get around a big pine that was blocking the stream. You could just barely get under and between a few branches if you did the limbo in your boat. Some boats were more accomodating than others and the resulting attempts were quite humorous. I still can't believe George made it and that Charlotte didn't fall in the water! Amazingly none of us went swimming here! Thanks go out to Joy who pulled out a wire saw and managed to cut off one of the branches hanging in the water to make a wider opening which was helpful for the wider boats. Not our ordinary flat water trip, but lots of fun, and we did make it to 2nd Lake! 10 Participants: Mo Coutant, Charlie Czech, Bill Glendenning, Licia Mackey, Joy Munrow, Andrew and Anne Paolano, Maria Rawson, George Sammons, and Charlotte Smith.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Jun 17, 2014, Mo Coutant - We hadn't done a hike in awhile, so we headed to a favorite - Sleeping Beauty on the east side of Lake George. We were able to drive into the Dacy Clearing parking lot, which saved us a few miles and hiking time. We did the loop trail heading straight to the peak and then down to Bumps Pond and back the other side of the mountain. The trail wasn't very muddy, the bugs weren't bad, and the temperature was perfect with a slight breeze on top to keep us comfortable. We saw some frogs, toads, red efts, and a few pink lady slippers on top. Great hike and company as usual. We got back in time for a lunch at Panera before going our separate ways. 7 Participants: Jim Brown, Mo Coutant, Susan Howard, Mark Janey, Licia Mackey, George Sammons, and Bill Schwarz.
Saranac Lakes Canoe Sat, Jun 21, 2014, Jayne Bouder - This day trip was cancelled and replaced with a Lake George paddle/camp at the last minute. Bill and Mark were game to launch from Huelett's Landing with me and chipped in for a prime site on Duran Island, with a cove and a view of the Black Mountain firetower. We explored the Mother Bunch Islands, enjoyed distant fireworks on the year's shortest night, and went swimming and sunning after a half mile hike up the Five Mile Point trail. Blue sky, white clouds towering over tall mountains, light winds whipping up the surf, and the sound of wavelets all night long- the place was our pleasure for the whole 28 hours! Wished it could have been 48. 4 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Bill Glendenning, Mark Janey, and 'Thank-you' Neil.
Tuesday PADDLE Tue, Jun 24, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we returned to Round Lake after avoiding the lake for many years due to a lack of parking. But this spring a new parking area along Rt. 9 was completed that allowed us to launch and park. The heron rookery has been abandoned, but we saw plenty of herons so they must not have moved too far away. We also saw plenty of milfoil or a milfoil look-a-like. It was 20-30 yds from the shore in places. Be sure to clean off your boat if you paddle here. We were able to paddle further along the Anthony Kill than we usually can due to the beaver dam being removed earlier in the season. Afterwards, most of us had dinner or snacks outside at the Mill. It was a gorgeous night to sit outside! 10 Participants: Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Charlie and Linda Czech, Paul Dietershagen, Bill Glendenning, Mark Janey, Licia Mackey, Andrew Paolano, and Charlotte Smith.
Whiteface from Lake Placid - The Trail Less Taken Sun, Jun 29, 2014, Wayne Richter - We had a fine summer day for our less traveled route to Whiteface. After a brief mosquito-rich start, we took the short detour to Whiteface Landing on lake Placid to contemplate the dock and our swim on the way back. From there, we headed up on our ascent. Somewhere about 4,000 feet, the black flies made an impressive appearance, and stayed with us all the way to the summit. We had some great views looking back and enjoyed the open climb to the tourist-laden peak. After looking out for a few minutes, we took the elevator down to the restaurant level where Rose ordered lunch and the rest of us joined her out of black fly range (it does seem a bit like cheating). We walked up the arette and headed down, eventually getting below black fly elevation. We reached Whiteface Landing and went off in different directions to change before enjoying a swim in the clear waters of Lake Placid and a sunning on the dock. Congratulations to Rose on her first High Peak. 4 Participants: Nicole Durocher Beaulne, Rosemarie Pilon and Wayne Richter.
Scarface Mt. Sun, Jun 29, 2014, Lorraine MacKenzie - Our path led us to an interesting wooden bridge built over the multiple beaver dams of Ray Brook. A short distance further, we encountered railroad tracks equipped with well maintained railroad crossing signs. Next we literally almost stumbled upon a luna moth taking a nap right in the middle of the path. After relocating it to safety, we continued our journey to the summit and found the views to be indeed limited. We retreated to a large rock outcropping that afforded beautiful southwesterly views of the Seward Range. As always, it was a great day out in the woods! 8 participants: Bill Carpenter, April Fiacco, Laura Fiske, Margie Litwin, Klaus Sommalatte, Sharon Zaccarri, Cindy Zicker and Lorraine MacKenzie
Cranberry Lake 50 Fri, Jul 4, 2014, Jack Whitney - On the way north we ran into rain showers, so we stopped in Tupper Lake for a huge breakfast before striking out on our overnight camping trip. Starting at Burntbridge Pond trailhead, we traveled the Burntbridge to Dog Pond loop, following the trail along the edge of Cranberry Lake and then the trail headed east and we were without views of the lake for a couple of hours. Hiking past Curtis and Dog Ponds then hitting the junction, we were traveling on an old road. We stopped just before Cranberry Lake on the Otter Brook Trail to pump some of the best tasting water I've had out of a small stream. There were already several campers at Chair Rock Flow, so we traveled on further to the next campsite which was about a half mile to the lake, so we decided to take the 1.1 miles to Olmstead Pond to spend the night at the lean to which made about 20 miles for our first day. Rising early, with fog coming off Olmstead Pond, we ate breakfast and then hit the trail at 7:00 a.m., and hiked the Six Mile Creek Trail to Cowhorn Junction and Pond. Hiked the Cowhorn Junction Trail which for the three of us was the completion of the Cranberry Lake 50 challenge. We still had about 3.5 miles left to go to get back to our cars and stories of our journey to tell for years. 3 Participants: Rich Holm, Dan Monroe, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Jul 8, 2014, Mo Coutant - The forecast was for evening storms and my daughter was at a friend's camp during the day, so we did this trip in the morning. Since we had extra time, we headed to Lake Abanakee which has been on our wish list for quite awhile. The trip was perfect: great company, good weather (we heard a rumble of thunder just as we were packing up), and a beautiful location. We saw a couple of loons and some osprey nests. Afterwards, some of us headed into North Creek for a pizza. Great morning out! 15 Participants: Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Carolyn Curren, Charlie and Linda Czech, Dee Demetriou, Bill Glendenning, Mark Janey, Sharon Kendall, Stuart Leinoff, Licia Mackey, Jim Ralston, Gwenne Rippon, George Sammons, and Charlotte Smith.
Santanoni, Couch,and Panther Sat, Jul 12, 2014, Mike Fuller - Ahh! The rugged Santanonis and a beautiful summer day. Our enthusiastic group started out as I told stories about the first time I led this hike three years ago. The trail was surprisingly dry considering all the rain we've had. We made the turn for Bradley Pond, then came the up. Before we knew it we were at Panther trailhead. We dropped our packs and soon were on the summit. Everyone was taking pictures and taking in the view. I pointed out Couch to first timers. "We have to go way down there?" "Yes!" The hike to Couch was good, just a little mud at the swamp. Lunch at the summit then back to Times Square where we fueled for Santanoni. The usual mud but still good going. Soon we heard cheers; Jesse Cole had finished his 46er quest on Santanoni. I gave him his 46er patch, stickers and button, then the champagne toast and pictures. We took the old new trail back out and we were out by 8. A great day with a great group and a 46er finish! 15 participants: JP Martin, David Acquavella, Judy Beers, Erica Holbrook, Jesse Cole, Wayne Ritcher, Colleen Downing, Patrick Reilly, Maryanne MacKenzie, Ramus Preda, Joe Babcock, Thomas Cole, Joan Scibetta, Elizabeth McIanahan and Mike Fuller.
Cat and Thomas Mountains Sat, Jul 12, 2014, Reg Prouty - We started on the trailhead at Valley Woods Road and followed the blue trail to Thomas for a short break and then on to Cat for the best views and lunch. Weather was great for seeing Lake George, Tongue Mountain, Trout Lake and Edgecomb Pond below. A miniconcert was provided by Reg during lunch. Dropping down to the gravel road we returned to the trailhead happy that it was such a rewarding day. 7 Participants: Reg Prouty, Robert Garabedian, Mary Shami, Fahima Abdul Hammed, Kendra Pratt, Rich Crammond, and Marianne Hines.
Mother Bunch Islands Sat, Jul 12, 2014, Jayne Bouder - This place is gorgeous- only have to be careful of the wind. We were well armed with two battle-axe Grummans and a sit ontop, unsinkable kayak. Got the last campsite available, and the four adjoining sites emptied in the face of the second storm forecast that week. The first must have been unnerving- lots of trees came down, but we were lucky for just an hour of soaking rain at bedtime. Tim and Mary's boat led our morning excursion to Black Mountain Ponds Outlet in the teeth of an increasing, tiring wind. But it gentled down in time to give us an easy ride back to the town beach at Huletts for a late lunch. Beautiful Place! 6 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Nate June, and Charlotte Smith, and Tim and Mary Ward.
Buck Mountain Sun, Jul 20, 2014, Lorraine MacKenzie - The trek up Buck Mountain is always invigorating and the diverse terrain keeps the route interesting. This day was unusually cool for July but with some humidity. Everyone managed to reach the summit in a short period of time. We were expecting the blueberry plants to be bursting with berries. Unfortunately, only a few bushes had ripened fruit - enough to get a taste. As always, it was a great day out in the woods! 8 participants: Shelly Burke, Carol Conolly, John Good, Susan Howard, Susan Keely, Klaus Sommalatte, Sandy Yellen and Lorraine MacKenzie
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Jul 22, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we paddled the South Glens Falls dam to Feeder Canal dam section of the Hudson River. It was a warm evening, so some of the group took a quick dip before getting into their boats. At first we headed upstream against the current and wind! At the power pole near the Feeder Canal we saw the osprey nest and the osprey hanging out. We headed back and saw a Great Blue Heron and many geese! Once we got back, some of the group headed over to the park and heard the last part of Bobby Dick and Suzie Q's show. Nice night out as usual! 11 Participants: Joanne Armstrong, Stewart Brown, Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Anne Hunt, Mark Janey, Licia Mackey, George Sammons, Charlotte Smith, Donna and Mitch Zimmer.
Skylight and Marcy Sat, Jul 26, 2014, Wayne Richter - An early start saw us on the trail out of Heart Lake just after 7:30. We made a short stop for the views at Marcy dam, then continued on to Lake Arnold for a longer break. Detouring just a bit off our route to the lake shore, we were treated to a solid patch of sunshine in what had been a largely cloudy morning. It was so pretty and pleasant that it was hard to get going again, but we soon cleared the divide and headed down to cross the gorgeous swamp just before Feldspar Brook. The long climb to Lake Tear of the Clouds went well and we were treated to yet another sun patch upon our arrival. The leader being massively outvoted and not too averse, seven of us went up Gray, six for the first time. Gray turned out to be an enjoyable challenge with better views than remembered, especially as the balance of sun and clouds began to tilt more to sun. Then it was on to Skylight, straight up the trail. Skylight was spectacular as usual, and a bit cool with the wind. We had lunch, and Wayne finally got rid of all those brownies he was carrying. After a good long time on the summit, we headed back down to Four Corners, then up, up to Marcy. Once out of the trees, the open rock and views were just mind-blowing. We met Jen, the summit steward, then settled down to enjoy the summit. The clouds held off and we had fine vistas all around. By the time we left a bit before 5:00, we had been the only ones there for a while. Imagine Marcy to yourself on a great day! We made a final long stop at Indian Falls before heading down to finish just before needing headlamps. Congratulations to Lauren on her first High Peaks and welcome back to Intaba. 8 Participants: Lauren Crehan, Will Groff, Rachel Lane, Michael Letzring, Intaba Liff-Anderson, Wayne Richter, Mark Rye, and Joan Scibetta.
Allen 'The Big Nasty' Sat, Aug 2, 2014, Mike Fuller - Ahhh! The summer Big Nasty. The weather called for showers, but all we encountered was a few morning clouds. Our enthusiastic group was eager to add Allen to their list. We had a pretty dry trail and even 'The Opalescent' was just a stone hopper. On the way in a father and daughter team joined us. We also ran into 'Uncle Wayne' heading back from Allen. Skylight Brook yielded a break and we fueled up for the climb. Time for Red Slime Warning! Yeah the summit! Time for lunch and pictures. And, I showed everyone the views off the north side. Hey, let's head back! When we reached Skylight Brook it started to rain. The trail suddenly turned into a brook with lots of mud. But, the last hour of the hike was rain free with breaks of sun. We were out with daylight to spare. A great day and a fun group. Thanks Chris for giving a ride to the father and daughter team back to their car at Upper Works. 8 participants: Dennis Walsh, Heather Webb, Dan Rammacher, Intaba Liff Anderson, Denise McQuade, Remus Preda, Chris Collins and Mike Fuller.
Indian Head and Fishhawk Cliffs Sat, Aug 2, 2014, Reg Prouty - It was a beautiful summer day for a hike to one of the best overlooks in the Adirondacks. After lunch on Indian Head we headed to Fish Hawk Cliffs for a look at Indian Head from there. There was ample water in the pretty flumes in Gill Brook on the return trip to the Lake Road. The rain held off as long as it could. 7 Participants: Reg Prouty, Nathan June, Charlotte Smith, Linda Veraska, Mitch Zimmer, Donna Zimmer and Marianne Hines.
McKenzie Mt.- Saranac Lake 6 Sun, Aug 3, 2014, Jack Whitney - We climbed McKenzie from the Bartlett Pond Trail which is a much more hiker-friendly trail than the other trail from Rt. 86. This was a large group of ten people. Weather was cooperative and we were rewarded with great views to share with good friends. 10 Participants: Susan Howard, Laura Fiske, April Fiacco, Lorraine MacKenzie, Sharon Zaccara, Chris Imperial, Klaus Summerlatte, Sandy Yellen, Marsha LaPointe, Marion Hanover, and Jack Whitney.
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Aug 5, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we paddled another section of the Hudson. We went from just above the Feeder Canal Dam up to the old logging booms before turning around. We saw a Great Blue Heron and John saw a little beaver or muskrat. The river was like glass which made for an easy paddle. Nice evening out, as usual! 10 Participants: Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Ann Hunt, Jane Kana, Nancy Lyons, Licia Mackey, John Schneider, Charlotte Smith, Donna and Mitch Zimmer
Seward Range Sat, Aug 16, 2014, Wayne Richter - The big surprise of the day was arriving at the trailhead to find the parking lot full and cars parked along the side of the road. This is the Sewards - nobody goes to the Sewards! With great rain a few days before, overcast skies and cool temperatures worthy of late September, the day started muddy and stayed muddy. Undaunted by the mud, we headed to the Calkins Brook herd path and took our first break at the camping area just over the stream. We then made the long climb up to the ridge and crowded on to Donaldson which gave us hazy views to the east. It was on the way to Emmons that we met many of those who had arrived before us. The clouds moved in and we didn't get to see much on the way. We packed into Emmons's meager summit for lunch, went back up the ridge and then down on the long descent before Seward. We had a rewarding climb up Seward as the clouds lifted, then an interminably long descent. Following a rest at a beautiful stream crossing, we made the long hike out on the Ward Brook Truck Trail. Elizabeth gets the 'Why did I do this?' award for hiking in running shoes that she improbably managed to keep dry (did I mention there was mud?) while carrying brand new hiking boots in her pack. 11 Participants: Josh Baker, Sandy DeMers, Nicole Durocher Beaulne, Helen Hokula, JP Martin, Elizabeth Mclanahan, Remus Preda, Patrick Reilly, Wayne Richter, Joan Scibetta, and Heather Webb.
Big Pond and North Pond Sat, Aug 16, 2014, Rich Crammond - Such a great day for hiking in the 'Dacks - cool temperatures and good company. There was some major blow down across a few areas of the trail but we scampered around it. Hiking with son Rich was a highlight of this outing because we don't see him too much. Other highlights were hiking with Bill and seeing all those red efts on the trail. A grand day in the woods. Thanks guys for hiking along. 3 Participants: Bill Glendening, Richard Elvis Crammond, and Rich Crammond.
Prospect Mtn - back side approach Sun, Aug 17, 2014, Maureen Coutant - This trip was added to the website after the newsletter came out. Be sure to check the website at www.adk-gfs.org, as some trips do get added every once in awhile! We did it as an ADK outing and invited some of the young musicians who were in Lake George for the music festival to join us. Four of them came out for a short hike up Prospect Mountain from the back side (Lake George Rec trails). We had a great time hearing about their music festival experiences and the lives of up and coming musicians! They particularly liked seeing the red efts on the trail. I think there's a new facebook page for the red eft! Participants: 7 ADK: Mo Coutant, Bill Glendenning, and Licia Macky; Lake George Music Festival: Andrew (Viola, Pittsburgh), Natalie (Cello, Kentucky), Hajnal (Violin, Memphis), and Minji (Violin, So. Korea).
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Aug 19, 2014, Mo Coutant - This week we paddled up the Schroon River from the County Home Bridge just off Exit 23. The water was a little higher than in previous trips and the current seemed a little stronger than I remembered, but it made for a little more of a workout. Not too tough though. We paddled upstream for about 1-1/4 hours and the cruised back with the current took half that time! We were also treated with a great blue heron flying right over some of us and then an osprey doing the same thing! This was a new paddle for some in the group and everyone seemed to enjoy the evening on the water. 11 Participants: Jane Bouder, Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Charlie and Linda Czech, Paul Dietershagen, Bill Glendenning, Jane Kana, Licia Mackey, George Sammons, and Charlotte Smith.
Noonmark and Possibly Round Sat, Aug 23, 2014, Reg Prouty - After ascending Round Mountain and having a pretty good workout in so doing, we had a leisurely lunch and searched for the trail down to the col that leads to the trail to Noonmark. Upon reaching that junction, we made the decision to save Noonmark for another day. The view from Round was very rewarding for the climbing we did. 4 Participants: Reg Prouty, Nathan June, Mark Passa, and Shelly Burke.
Rainbow Lake Sat, Aug 23, 2014, Jayne Bouder - No callers, went to Lowe's Lake.
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Sep 2, 2014, Mo Coutant - This trip was actually led by Jayne Bouder with help from locals, Tim and Mary Ward. The plan was to go in to Lake Champlain along a right of way on the side of a road in the South Bay. Unfortunately, I guess it was windy the day before and the southerly wind moved about 10 inches of water northward. Hard to believe, but according to the locals, it happens! So to get to the water from our launch point was going to be a slog through knee high muck. We found a better spot at the end of the access point, but it involved a four foot drop-off the road and then a little less sloggy walk through reeds. But once we got on the water, it was all good! Great even! The cliff and mountains surrounding that section of the South Bay are impressive! We paddled through a canal in a wild rice paddy and along the side of 'the Diameter,' a rock face reminiscent of a mini half dome. It was a warm evening, but as we got past the diameter we felt a cool breeze like someone had opened a huge refrigerator door. Apparently, the snow and ice gets trapped beneath the rubble field below the cliff face and creates cool breezes all summer long. Something to remember for next summer on a hot and humid day! We got out at dusk to discover a reason not to have two of the same car brands in the family or not have both keys with you! The wrong one was brought with us on the paddle and the keys to the car at the launch site were locked inside! Most of us had fun at the Stewarts in Whitehall as the car got unlocked and we were all on our way a little later than planned, but with stories to tell! 14 Participants: Jayne Bouder, Mo Coutant, Carmelita DeCicco, Paul Dietershagen, Mark Janey, Beth Johansen, Licia Mackey, Anne Paolano, George Sammons, Tim and Mary Ward, and Gwenn, Don and Holly.
Redfield and Cliff Sat, Sep 6, 2014, Wayne Richter and Chris Greco - Due to the forecast of rain and possible thunderstorms on Saturday, we moved the hike to Sunday, fortunately losing only a couple of people. More fortunate still was the spectacular day that Sunday gave us: clear skies and crisp, fall-like air - an ideal hiking day. We left from Heart Lake and took our first break sitting in the sun on the rocks along Lake Arnold. We decided to go up Cliff first and get the Trials of Cliff - the mud wallow and the cliffs - behind us. All went well and I found myself really enjoying Cliff; it's an underrated peak with some fine views along the way. We descended as well as we came up, then began our ascent of Redfield. With the late afternoon sun sparkling on Uphill Brook and dappling leaves on the opposite valley wall that were just beginning to turn yellow, this was a splendid climb. Redfield has wonderful views from the summit and one of the best framings of Marcy anywhere just below the top. We needed our headlamps just after Lake Arnold and got a final treat in the remaining hours of walking out in the dark. The night was clear and still with a nearly full moon illuminating the open areas. 9 Participants: Tom Bronchetti, Karen Burka, Joe Burka, Sandy DeMers, Colleen Downing, Intaba Liff-Anderson, Elizabeth McLanahan, Wayne Richter, and Heather Webb.
Black Bear Mt. Sun, Sep 7, 2014, Jack Whitney - Six hearty souls met at Panera's to make the scenic ride up Rt. 28 to the trailhead of this mountain located just outside of Inlet, New York. Once at the trailhead it was an easy, leisurely hike to the summit where we all enjoyed the views, our lunches and everyone's camraderie. On the way out we were surprised when a young deer appeared in the trail in front of us but was totally unafraid and stayed with us walking along side just off the trail for quite some distance. A great camera moment! 6 Participants: Subhan Al, Pat Desbiens, Rita Perry, Robert Perry, Cindy Zicker, and Jack Whitney.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Sep 8, 2014, Sarah King and Mo Coutant - Well, the kids are back in school and the boat traffic is gone so time to head up to Northwest Bay on Lake George to do some geocaching and kayaking! We lucked out and had a beautiful September day to do this paddle. There were a whopping 16 caches from the launch all the way out to Montcalm Point. My goal was to get out to Montcalm Point as I had never paddled this far. It was four miles from the launch. We did several caches on the way out of the channel, and then decided to head for the point as we wanted to get there before the wind kicked up. We made it out to the point, finding most of the caches on the way, and stopped for lunch in our boats in a bay. Chocolate chip cookies were provided by Licia. Paul was mostly fishing, Mike was rowing, and the girls were caching. No rattlesnakes were to be found. Perfect day on the lake and 16 out of 16 caches found. 6 Participants: Sarah King, Mo Coutant, Licia Mackey, Diane Demetriou, Mike George, and Paul Dietershagen.
Pitchoff Mtn Tue, Sep 9, 2014, Maureen Coutant - It had been so long that I forgot how steep it was coming down off the final peak with many of the participants saying it should be an 'A' hike! It doesn't meet the official criteria, but the views, interest, and steepness of the descent certainly are on par with some of the High Peaks! The hike up to Balanced Rocks was not bad at all and the view was very unique. I'd forgotten that you look over at the Bobsled track, which is weird! But then over to Cascade and Porter and the other typical mountain scenery. The rocks along the ridge were very cool and photos were taken by everyone there. Then on to the next peak along the ridge for a nice lunch break looking over to the slide on Cascade. We tore ourselves away and on to more and more peaks. 'Are we going over there?' It turns out we were, again and again! The views were more and more spectacular, but we had to pay with a steep decline! Sore toes weren't really helped by the Stewarts ice cream afterwards! 13 Participants: Annemarie Carberry, Jim and Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Denise Erwin, Ania Gaguine, Gretchen Gedzoiz, Mark Janey, Nathan June, Eric Krantz, Liz Mulshine, Anne Paolano, and Lynne Silverberg.
Mt. Colden Sat, Sep 13, 2014, Bill Morse - We were hoping to beat the rain, but it was early. It was a very wet hike, especially on the way out. First High Peak for Pegah. A bit of a challenge to start the 46, but she survived. Sleet and rain at the top with no view. It's 9/13 and there was snow. Don't we get an autumn? Good hardy group for a wet day. 7 Participants: Nicole Durocher Beaulne, Colleen Downing, Pegah Jamshidi, Terry Langlois, Kelli Schaefer, Heather Webb, Bill Morse and Abbey.
OK Slip Falls and Blue Ledge Overlook Sat, Sep 13, 2014, Nick Ringelberg - We went in on the camp road, stopping at the old Crehore Garnet Mine and tunnel. Next was the OK Slip Falls overlook and views of Kettle Mtn. from the top of the falls. A mile of bushwhack took us to the Hudson River at Carter Landing with its disappearing stream and cave, but we couldn't find the entrance. Another mile bushwhack on the deer trail ridge above the Hudson and we saw some rafters on the rapids below the Blue Ledges. We found the entrance of a second cave and crept into the darkness a little ways near the Blue Ledge Overlook. In the light rain we enjoyed the Blue Ledge view, upriver, but a little overcast. One more cave at the Carter Ponds, but it was pretty wet and the beaver activity seemed to be keeping it that way. Walking out we admired the island in Ross Pond from the rock campsite and commiserated with two campers who were trying to dry out, the only people (except for the rafters) we saw all day. Fab Day, Great Group, A+ hike! 5 Participants: Neal Andrews, Lem Hloo, Lawray Hloo, Wayne Ellett, and Nick Ringelberg.
Kings Flow, Humphrey Mt. trail (unmaintained) Sat, Sep 13, 2014, Rich Crammond and Jayne Bouder - Humphrey Mtn. trail was a pleasant surprise - well defined and marked all the way to the overgrown lumber camp, and an odd cleared bump of garnet mine tailings. After that it became a damp, leafy bushwack, marked by widely spaced bits of faded surveror tape, and foliage that had just reached saturation. At the last discernible bit of tape we were possibly 1/4 mile from the mine- in fog, with a good chance of getting lost. So Rich reluctantly turned us around. Good thing, as we were sopped and chilled by the time we got back to the cars. We'll try it again sometime. Great group, great day! 4 Participants: Peter Bishop, Jayne Bouder, Rich Crammond, and Reg Prouty.
Hurricane Mountain Sun, Sep 14, 2014, Jack Whitney - We climbed Hurricane from the east following an old road up to the site of the former observers cabin. The trail gets a little steeper after the observers cabin but when you pop out onto the summit - the views are spectacular. A great day enjoyed by all. 11 Participants: Rich Holm, Rachel Baum, Shelly Burke, Laura Fiske, Ann Mundy, Klaus Sommerlithe, Sandra Foley, Rebecca Weller, Sandy Yellen, Bill Carpenter, and Jack Whitney.
MONDAY paddle Mon, Sep 15, 2014, Maureen Coutant - After Labor Day the boat traffic on the big lakes really decreases, especially during the week. So we headed to Brant Lake for a paddle. We had great temperatures, blue sky and very little wind/waves. This allowed us to paddle further than we usually do and went about half way up the lake before switching to the other side to explore both shores. It was about a six mile trip and a great couple of hours out on the water! 9 Participants: Mo Coutant, Tina Crook, Carma Decicco, Paul Dietershagen, Bill Glendenning, Licia Mackey, Ciry Rinella, Carole and Richard Robbins.
Giant of the Valley Mountain from Sat, Sep 20, 2014, Reg Prouty - After spotting a car at the Mossy Cascade trailhead we drove to the 9N trail head on the north side of Giant. Hiking was easy to the Green-Giant junction but was challenging after that. Reaching Giant's summit at about 1 PM we found it socked in with 50-60 mile/hour winds and thick clouds so we did not dare venture out there for safety reasons but had our lunch close to the summit in some shelter. Despite the weather we enjoyed each other's company and came out to the car exactly at sunset. A long tiring day but at least we can now say we've been up Giant all five ways. 3 Participants: Reg Prouty, Kevin Cox, and Catherine Bunk.
Giant / Rocky Peak Ridge Traverse Sat, Sep 27, 2014, Mike Fuller - Wow, can you believe this day! After we spotted cars at New Russia we started at Chapel Pond with a good climb ahead of us. With every viewing area it was spectacular color and clear skies everywhere. At the summit of Giant, a break, snacks then off to Rocky. These two peaks had a lot of hikers enjoying the beautiful day. At Rocky we broke for lunch and ran into 'Uncle Wayne,' he was doing Rocky and Giant from New Russia. The only mud was at Lake Mary Louise. Traversing this ridge on a day like this really brought out the cameras. As we started down from Bald Peak to Blueberry Cobble we were soon in the easy going of the hardwoods. We all got out before 5:30pm. A great day spent with a great group. 11 participants: Joshua Baker, Scott Jacoby, Bill Barton, Joe Babcock, Dennis Walsh, Neal Andrews, Ben Wells, Erica Holbrook, Leighann Helson, Bethany Krawiec, and Mike Fuller.
Marshall Peak and plane crash site Sat, Oct 4, 2014, Mike Fuller - Another Marshall hike and another rainy October. This was my third year leading this hike and it's rained every time; maybe next year it'll be sunny. We started off with full rain gear and in good spirits. At Calamity Pond we stopped for a break and to take pictures of the Henderson Monument. When we got to Flowed Lands, we decided that we'd just go to Marshall and skip the plane crash site due to the weather. We regrouped at Herbert Brook and headed up. Soon we were at my favorite spot on Marshall, the alpine bog and the source of Herbert Brook. We started to spread out as we made our way to the summit, then the cheers came. Patrick had finished his 46er quest. In true Irish form we toasted with Jameson and Guinness. It was a wet hike out, but still a great Adirondack experience. 10 participants: Joe Babcock, Denise McQuade, Heather Webb, Dennis Walsh, Dick Goldy, Jeff Levitt, Patrick Reilly, Sandy DeMers, Chris Collins, and Mike Fuller.
Phelps from Klondike Notch Trail Sat, Oct 4, 2014, Reg Prouty - We had pretty good Fall weather, although a gust of wind on the summit did usher in a few snow flakes. We took a short break at the Klondike lean-to on the way up and back. All agreed that this was an easier way to climb Phelps. 4 Participants: Reg Prouty, Jaclyn Hardiman, Stephen Longmire, and Chris Kowanko.
Jay Range Sun, Oct 5, 2014, Wayne Richter - We had a splendid fall day. The foliage was excellent and we had unusually clear air that gave us fine views to Lake Champlain and the Vermont peaks, not to mention the Great Range and other Adirondack mountains. We had fine views up and back along the ridge, and I finally made it to the benchmark at the end. 11 Participants: Reg Beatty, Beau Besser, Jill Howard, Monica Raveret Richter, Wayne Richter, Jacques Roeth, Maureen Roeth, Charlotte Smith, Klaus Sommerlatte, Linda Veraska and Ingrid Wilke.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Oct 6, 2014, Sarah King and *Maureen Coutant - Today we did a trip I've been wanting to do for some time. I had never hiked Black Mountain and with a good number of geocaches there, it was a great destination for us today. We signed in at 9am and began our hike. We did the loop in a counterclockwise direction, making it to the summit in 2 hours. There, we met several other hikers, enjoyed our lunch (and homemade treats from Licia) and took pictures. I was amazed at how loud the wind turbine was. It sounded like an airplane was landing at the summit! But nothing could spoil that incredible view! We had found six caches on the way up and now it was time to head down and look for the remaining seven. We passed by Black Mountain and Lapland Ponds as we chatted and cached our way down. It was a great day out enjoying a beautiful mountain, great company, and many geocaches. We returned to the trailhead at 3:09pm, a total of eight miles, elapsed time 6 hours 9 minutes, moving 3 hours, 54 minutes and stopping for 2 hours, 14 minutes. Our min. elevation was 1,440 ft. and our maximum was 2,689 ft. Our ascent was 1,699 ft and our descent was 1,675 ft. Thanks to Larry for the stats. 6 Participants: Sarah King, Mo Coutant, Licia Mackey, Todd Earl, Larry Eaton and Rich Drew.
Hopkins via Mossy Cascade Trail Tue, Oct 7, 2014, Maureen Coutant - It had been awhile since I'd done this trail. But it was as I vaguely remembered as a nice, somewhat gradual, partially along a creek, hike in the woods and with a great view looking up the Ausable Valley. As it says in the ADK guidebook, it really is a great spot to see how Sawtooth got it's name. We had fun trying to identify the other peaks as well. When we got to the summit, cloud and rain were just getting to the High Peaks and heading our way. We got to see them before they were socked in. As we stood around trying to decide where to have lunch, the sprinkles got to us, but they were actually snow pellets! Luckily that only lasted a moment and 10 minutes later the sun was out again. Great trip, views, company and conversations! 6 Participants: Mo Coutant, Licia and Steve Mackey, Lynne Silverberg, Dan Stec, and Laurie Williams.
Botheration and William Blake Ponds Sat, Oct 11, 2014, Rich Crammond - What a great day to be hiking in the 'Dacks. We decided to change the hike to someplace I've wanted to go to for a long time. OK Slip Falls is the place to be for people who want to hike to a very nice spot and that's just what we passed on the trail, many people. One main highlight of this outing was seeing the falls from across and also from the top. The rock is slanted downward in both spots so believe me hiking buds, don't get too close to the edge because it then drops straight off. We stayed well back, of course. Thanks to my fellow ADKers for going on this outing. 3 Participants: Mark Janey, Bill Schwartz, Rich Crammond.
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Oct 14, 2014, Maureen Coutant - We had a beautiful daytime paddle on the Hudson River on the Spier Falls section from the boat launch downstream to the coves and around the island. The colors were a little past peak, but there were still leaves on the trees and made for a beautiful landscape. The breeze seemed to pick up a little bit and gave us a work out on the way back against the current and into the wind! 9 Participants: Mo Coutant, Don Butler, Sue Hamlin, Mark Janey, Licia Mackey, Joy Munro, Anne Paolano, Gwenne Rippon, and George Sammons.
YMG - Hadley Halloween Hike Sat, Oct 18, 2014, Jen Shepherd - The forecast wasn't looking too promising with some chance for showers in the later portion of the morning but that didn't stop us! I saw my first owl in the wild on my drive over to the trailhead to meet the group. I took it as a good sign! My little group assembled in the parking area and began our ascent. We were maybe fifteen minutes in when it began to sprinkle. It was a good time to stop and put away any cameras and put on rain gear. A few minutes after we started again, it rained harder. Since I've hiked Hadley in all manner of weather, I was willing to continue on and left the choice to the folks who came all the way from Connecticut to join us. In the end, two (Sharon and Susan) went back and three (Joe, Wayne, and myself) pushed for the summit. The showers died down and we were treated to a mostly socked in view at the top. We explored the tower. I noted the little American flag someone had added; nice touch! From there it was down to the cabin to have a look around and enjoy a snack in the shelter of the cabin porch. We got down there at a good time as the rains returned. Surprisingly, we were joined by two ladies who had reached the cabin ahead of their husbands. They turned out to be from the Schenectady chapter on an unofficial outing. The wives insisted that their husbands pose in a photo with me in my costume and then the rest of us. Another couple came to join the porch party and share in some Halloween treats. Between the three of us we had plenty of candy and I baked peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips to share. The couple headed to the tower while the group of four from Schenectady headed back down the mountain. My little trio was not far behind them. We only passed a handful of people coming up as we descended and not many wanted candy. I'll blame the weather! Rain aside, it was still a great trip and I'm glad everyone came out to join me. Even if we all went home with more candy than we planned on! 5 participants: Jen Shepherd (Little Red Riding Hood), Joe Babcock (escaped convict #46), Susan Howard (Bob from Bob's Burgers), and Wayne and Sharon Atwell from CT who didn't get to wear their costumes long! Photos can be viewed under the photos tab on the website.
ADK HQ Workday Sat, Oct 18, 2014, Mo Coutant - Thanks to all that came out and helped! Some even raked through the rain storm! The Lake George Property Committee really appreciates your help!
Tuesday Paddle Tue, Oct 28, 2014, Maureen Coutant - This was the last paddle of the season. Time to hang up the boats! We paddled from the boat launch on the Hudson River between Corinth and Hadley upstream to the rocks below the bridge in Hadley/Lake Luzerne. It was an easy paddle upstream with a tail wind pushing us along. The hard part was that last little push past where the Sacandaga River joins the Hudson. They must have released the water from the dam, because we were seeing rapids and not rocks! Luckily, if we got close to shore we could power our way past the current and get to the rocks which was our lunch destination. It was a nice end to the season. A fairly warm day, nice paddle and group, as always! Thanks to everyone who came out on a trip this season. I hope to see you and anyone else who wants to join us next season! 7 Participants: Mo Coutant, Mike George, Licia and Steve Mackey, Liz Mulshine, Gwenne Rippon, and George Sammons.
Monthly Monday Geocache Mon, Nov 3, 2014, Sarah King and Maureen Coutant - Today we visited the familiar Moreau State Park. I say familiar, but I'm always glad for the track logs on my gps to navigate the numerous trails here. We started out on the upper parking lot on Spier Falls Road. The plan was to look for three caches and to stop at a well known puzzle cache called Box Of Junk, that we would pass on the way. This was a particularly difficult one as we had to discover seven sets, or coordinates, hidden on various items (junk) in the ammo can. It was good to have several pairs of eyes here and we did end up finding all seven sets and the final at the end. Newcomer Todd saved the day, finding the last set of coordinates that we needed to find the final. In between hunting for the stages of the puzzle cache, we found the three other caches that we had on our list, visiting the overlook and another hidden overlook. We did run into a hunter and were glad we had on bright colors and were talking loudly. As always, it was a great time out with good friends. In Licia's absence, snacks were provided by Sarah. 5 Participants: Mo Coutant, Todd Earl, Larry Eaton, Sarah King, and Bill Schwarz.
Van Deusn and Hudson Pointe Preserves Sat, Nov 8, 2014, Reg Prouty - We hiked the Van Deusen trail in a counter-clockwise loop and discovered the overlook has been marked and flagged up as far as the private landowner's posted sign. Upon returning, we ran into a man looking for his sister's lost dog and he joined us, as he wasn't sure how to get back to the parking area. We then drove to the Hudson Pointe hike as we had saved the most interesting and best views for last. Five of the 10 were rewarded with great views of the Hudson River as we spent some time on a beach while Reg serenaded with the pocket trumpet and did his tribute to Grace Hudowalski. It is surprising how many participants don't know who she was. We were out by mid afternoon. 10 Participants: Reg Prouty, Pam Farrell, Nancy O'Malley, Louise Golub, Steve Golub, Thomas Burns, Jim Brown, Susan Jefts, Shelly Riley, and Marianne Moran.
YMG - Goodnow Fire Tower Sun, Nov 9, 2014, Jen Shepherd - Anyone that knows me, already knows how much I truly enjoy hiking the fire towers. It was the fire tower challenge that got me hiking solo a few years ago! Goodnow is among my favorites and my friend Leighann needed it, so I put the trip together. The forecast had a low chance for precipitation and I had a good group of folks joining in. It promised to be a good day. The majority of the group met in Queensbury with two others meeting at the trail. It rained on our drive and we even drove into some sleet, but all was dry and clear by the time we reached the trailhead. We were a small but strong group and I had woken up with a bad cold so I let Leighann take the lead while I pulled up the sweep and spent some time catching up with Rich. The trail had a light snow dusting that got a little more plentiful as we got higher. Some of the usual muddy spots were half frozen and not quite as sloppy as usual. We made excellent time to the summit and the weather was great. Overcast skies, but with clear views and hardly any wind at all. We took turns climbing the tower and went to inspect the cabin. It was nice to spend some time on the summit enjoying the views and snacks. Rich shared some Lindt chocolates with the group while Joe shared some hot tea with me. When everyone was ready we headed back down. 6 Participants (and you guys were all awesome): Leighann Helson, Joe Babcock, Rich Crammond (great seeing you!), Jeff Leavitt, Gretchen Gedroiz, and Jen Shepherd. Thanks for coming guys!
Walk around Thirteenth Lake Sun, Nov 9, 2014, Bill Schwarz - We survived a brief sprinkle (on one of those days with zero predicted precipitation), and then saw the year's first snowfall! The group was well prepared and of roughly equal ability. We saw a loon on the lake after hearing its call, and later encountered a large hemlock grove with healthy trees. The terrain and foliage were widely varied. This hike was cobbled together from several routes which originate on both sides of the lake, totalling eight miles. 7 Participants: Ania Gaguine, Jenny Olin, Frank Racioppi, John Racioppi, Charlotte Smith, Craig Weber, Bill Schwarz.
OK Slip Falls Wed, Nov 12, 2014, Mo Coutant - So it was a fairly cold day, but once we got going layers started peeling off. There are a few more pieces of planking at the beginning to help you keep feet dry, but there are still some spots where poles or rock hopping skills come in handy. Near the pond that's off to the south of the trail, we found that a moose had also very recently been using the trail. The droppings left behind were very fresh and we saw some tracks too. We took a side trip to the pond, but no luck seeing the moose. It was still very cool! Then, as we approached the waterfall, we were greeted by a few snow flurries slowly falling. The falls looked great and we stopped for a quick bite to eat and then headed over to the bridge above the falls and then back to the van! Great day out! 8 Participants: Mo Coutant, Bruce Cummings, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Kendra Pratt, George Sammons, and Janet Twardzik.
Peebles Island State Park Sat, Nov 15, 2014, Reg Prouty - Only one other person than myself showed up or had not cancelled out but it was a beautiful fall day to show Nathan June what interesting geological formations exist as both the Hudson and Mohawk carve their way to a common confluence. A few deer were seen browsing on the way in as they know they cannot be hunted in this preserve.
Black Mtn loop trail - CANCELED Tue, Nov 18, 2014, Maureen Coutant - Cancelled!
Turkey Trot #16 Saratoga Battlefield Hike Thu, Nov 27, 2014, Rich Crammond - What does seeing a black squirrel and a one antler buck deer add up to? Beats me! We sure did have a great time hiking in all the snow with some fine ADK hiking buds. The wildlife stood out in all the snow and what a snowy wonderland it was. Thanks to all for hiking along on this turkey day in the great outdoors. 4 Participants: Molly Bederian, Steve Bederian, Bill Schwarz, and Rich Crammond.
Moreau Lake State Park Western Ridge Loop to Lake Overlook Sat, Nov 29, 2014, Reg Prouty - A beautiful and mild late fall day was part of the treat for our first snowshoe climb of the season. The trees were leafless. Partial views of the Hudson, as the river meanders its way from flowing south to east to north again, were possible all the way up the Western Ridge Trail. We reached the overlook in an hour and a half. After about a half hour of lunch and socializing with musical interludes of seasonal music included on the trumpet, we headed back down the green trail and completed the loop. 5 Participants: Reg Prouty, Laura Fiske, Denise McQuade, Mary Alice Nyhan, and Margie Litwin.
Tuesday Trek Tue, Dec 9, 2014, Mo Coutant - Canceled due to weather.
Wilton Wildlife Park Hike/Snowshoe Sat, Dec 13, 2014, Rich Crammond - Man, was this a hike to remember. It went from a C hike to a B, complete with blowdown that 'blocked' the trail in one area; a rugged hike for sure. We hiked with folks from the New Jersey Chapter of ADK. They gave the hike a 10+ from 1 to 10 so that's a plus for this ADKer. Great snowshoe outing. Participants: Charles Dolin, Leah Dolin, Ann Dolin, John Good, Rich Crammond.
Tues Trek Tue, Dec 16, 2014, Mo Coutant - So we started up the Tuesday Treks this week due to rain/snow/sleet the prior week. We started off small with a 2 mile loop around the Van Dusen Preserve in Queensbury. This loop on the side of the small mountain doesn't have many views, but this time of year you can see through the trees to the West Mtn range and the Qsby/Glens Falls area. The wet snow from the prior week was still clinging to the trees and made for a beautiful hike in the woods. The trail was packed down, so all we needed was grippers. Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagan, Sarah King, Licia Mackey, Gary Rodd, George & Irene Sammons, Joanne Szot.
Tues Trek Tue, Dec 23, 2014, Mo Coutant - Ohhhh the weather outside was almost frightful, but the fire in the warming hut delightful...so around the lake we went, let it rain, let it rain, let it rain! It was actually only a drizzle and it only got worse later in the day, so we were all glad we got out for a little exercise and enjoyed each other's cookies afterwards in the warming hut! A nice break from the holiday stress! Participants: Mo Coutant, Paul Dietershagen, Licia Mackey, Laurie Williams, Donna, Mitch, and Stephanie Zimmer
Tues Trek Tue, Dec 30, 2014, Mo Coutant - We'll it wasn't a winter wonderland, so no sledding, skating, or snowshoeing. We didn't even use our grippers to walk along the trails and there was even someone there using the trails to mountain bike! We walked around all the loops and even accidentally wound up on the new mountain bike trails at the end. Eventually we made it back to our cars after more than 1-1/2 hours out enjoying the beautiful day and trails! Participants: Stuart Brown, Annemarie Carberry, Mo Coutant, Nancy Kimball, Sarah King, Eric Krantz, Licia Mackey, Gary Rodd, Bill Schwarz, Joanne Szot