Decided to return to an old favorite that is conveniently nearby, about 30 minutes drive. The forecast was to be a Bluebird day, and the weather did not disappoint. I was out the door a bit after 6am, made a stop for gas and were soon on my way. I had decided today that I would not take my pups as I had a feeling the trail was going to be crowded.
I eventually arrived at the parking area a little after 7am. I rather quickly grabbed my pack and was soon signed in and headed up. The trail up is pretty easy to follow, just need to pay attention to where you are going, as there are several switchbacks and some of them you could walk straight off into the woods if your not paying attention. One of the key things to hiking is carrying a map and compass, know how to use them, and pay attention to the trail. This time of year could be a challenge with all the leaves that are falling and covering up the trail. I'll explain later why I added something so obvious. The trail is in pretty good shape, very few muddy areas, and a few areas where the trail has running water. In most places you can rock hop right through the mud and water, and in a few areas you just have to hike right up through it. By avoiding walking around the mud and water you will prevent the trail from widening, and mitigate further erosion from the foot traffic. There was a young couple that had arrived before me and I eventually met up with them just below the summit.They were on their way back down. I stopped and chatted a bit and was happy to find out the wind was not that bad on the summit. Lyon mountain has a tendency to be windy, I have always had a blustery time up there.
I enjoyed the summit to myself for a good half hour or more, before 4 young men from Montreal arrived. They had traveled down for the day, and this was there first trip to the Adirondacks. We exchanged pleasantries and chatted for a bit, it was nice to see the look on there faces when I pointed out the city of Montreal was visible from there, you could even see the high rises reflecting in the sun.
As I was leaving there was a couple in the fire tower as I passed by on my way down. I would eventually meet several people making there way up to the top. I stopped counting the hikers on the trail when I hit 50, and there were about 15 canine companions total as well. It was nice to see most of the hikers had there pups on a leash. It was a busy day today, and the parking area was over flowing with cars as well.
I mention earlier about carrying a compass, map, being prepared, etc earlier. I say that because every year there are usually 2 or 3 cases on Lyon Mountain alone where people get lost, caught in the dark, hurt, etc. That plays a huge toll on local fire and ems, that are made up mostly of volunteers. While they enjoy serving there community, some of these incidents, if not most are avoidable if only people were better prepared for their hike. Of those 50 plus hikers I met on the way back down, half had backpacks, most had nothing with them (water, food).
Take a few extra minutes and prepare, read up on your hike, know your limits. Enjoy nature, but don't be a statistic.