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  1. Craig

    Adirondack 46ers announce

    The trails through the Elk Lake Conservation Easement Tract – to Mt. Marcy via Panther Gorge and to Dix Mountain – will be closed to public use for the duration of the big game hunting season beginning Saturday, October 20. The trails will reopen for public use on December 3.
  2. Craig

    IMG_6402.JPG

    Wow!
  3. Craig

    Point Lobos.JPG

    There is something very peaceful about the ocean.
  4. Craig

    Deer Pond Loop

    Dingo and I took a walk in the Deer Pond Loop Trail located outside Tupper Lake, NY. There are three points to access the trail (off route 3, route 30, and the old Wawbeek road). We (Dingo and I) started from the route 30 entrance around 8:30. We did the hike in a clockwise direction, for no particular reason. Knowing what I know now I would do it the same way next time. It was relatively flat easy-going for the first 3 to 4 miles, or until we turned off of the old Wawbeek road onto a fairly new looking trail. The only obstacle we ran into was water over the road due to a beaver dam. This was easily enough averted by throwing down a few fallen logs to use as steps. Once we turned off of the old road we begin to climb what was mostly rolling hills through very thick balsam and pine. The trail was somewhat dry through this area. There were a few bridges and Board walks that helped get us through some wet areas till we got to the first marsh or pond (not sure of the name), which is on the left before Deer pond. Once we got past that body of water it was a gradual uphill until we reached Deer pond/Lead pond junction once there we took a break for lunch. From this point it was more rolling hills and we worked our way back down to the height of land where it was walking through a bog, made up of mostly soft woods and a lot of peat moss, absolutely beautiful. There were various species of trees (cedar, balsam, pine) which I enjoyed as I meandered my way back to where we originally came in from. Once at the junction I turned left and headed back over the bridge taking the trail back out to the truck. It was a nice 7.9 mile hike that could easily be snowshoed or cross country skied (for the experienced skier for the section from Wawbeek road to the junction with Lead pond). The entire loop is labeled for skiing, however. I certainly enjoyed the loop and found it absolutely beautiful. I was very surprised that we had never seen any wildlife. We did seem to flush a few Ruffed Grouse along the way, and on our way back to camp seen a red fox terrorizing a group of turkeys. I look forward to returning and exploring the trail out to lead pond.
  5. Craig

    Debar Mountain

    While camping at Meacham Lake State campground, my pup Dingo and I, hiked Debar Mountain. We had started from the trail-head at 9:30 AM. Soon after signing in we were off. The trail starts out very easy walking, following along what must have been a jeep trail at one time, and now appears to be a snowmobile trail in the winter. It is very easy walking well past the junction to go left to Debar mountain, or going right towards Debar Meadows and onto County Route 26. From here there basically is not much climbing for awhile, then it becomes gradually uphill eventually arriving at the Leanto. The trail was wet in sections up till now, but nothing that cannot be managed by rock hopping through. From the Leanto the trail gets steeper and wetter as you are climbing up through drainage at times. Just past the leanto are the remnants of the foundation on your left, not sure if it was a Rangers cabin or some other building. One could easily miss it if not paying attention. From there the real climbing begins and the trail gets steeper, to the point you gain several hundred feet in a short distance. It is a short distance but the mountain makes you work for the summit. We arrived at the summit about 1230 and enjoyed a nice break. We didn't have much for views but still enjoyed the hike. We had our lunch, took some pictures, and noticed several anchor bolts at the summit that’s reported to have been a transmitter site and/or a fire tower. There was an old surveyor mark or pin. I'm sure there is a lot of history on this mountain, and I had found some here. The return trip down to the Leanto was uneventful. Much care was given to the footing as it had been a wet day, and slippery. The slide that we came to probably halfway from the Leanto gives an idea of the steepness of the trail. I would think this section could be a challenge in the winter. We arrived back at the Leanto at 1:40 took a short break, verified the outhouse worked. The rest of the hike back to the trail-head was uneventful arriving at 3 PM.
  6. Craig

    Lake Durant

  7. ADK and the Adirondack 46ers are working together to promote stewardship and conservation throughout the High Peaks Wilderness. Read the full article below. adk.org ADK and Adirondack 46ers Work Together to Address High Use in the High Peaks Wilderness
  8. 46er or aspirant, do you want to give back and have fun doing it? Join the 46er trail crew this year for a variety of trail projects! Everyone is fun to work with, you don't have to be skilled or strong, and your efforts are a great way to Leave a Trace in a positive way! To sign up, Go to the web link below: https://tinyurl.com/Trail-Crew-Signup-2018 The 46ers recognize the hours put in, which go towards earning Conservation Service Awards; see http://www.adk46er.org/Conservation_award.html. For a description of the trail maintenance days, see: http://www.adk46er.org/trail-crew.html For photos from trail work done in 2017, see: http://www.adk46er.org/trail-crew-photos.html
  9. For Release: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 Hikers Should Temporarily Avoid High Elevation Trails Some Seasonal Access Roads Remain Closed Due to Muddy Conditions [iMAGE_LEFT] [/iMAGE_LEFT] The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) urges hikers to be cautious and postpone hikes on trails above 2,500 feet until high elevation trails have dried and hardened. Snow and ice are currently melting on high elevation trails and steep trails with thin soils are dangerous for hiking and susceptible to erosion, and sensitive alpine vegetation is easily damaged. Backcountry trails in the highest elevations are still covered in slowly melting ice and snow. Steep trails with thin soils can become a mix of ice and mud as the ice melts and frost leaves the ground, making the trails slippery and vulnerable to erosion by hikers. Sensitive alpine vegetation is also easily damaged by hikers attempting to avoid the mud and ice. Avoiding these trails during the Muddy Trail Advisory helps to alleviate impacts to the trail tread and adjacent areas. Saturated, thin soils and steep grades combined with hikers trying to get traction lead to increased impacts to the trail corridors during the shoulder seasons. Snow and ice "monorails" are difficult to hike on, resulting in users widening trails. DEC encourages hikers to help avoid damage to hiking trails and sensitive high elevation vegetation by avoiding trails above 2,500 feet, particularly high elevation trails in the Dix, Giant, and High Peaks Wilderness areas in the northern Adirondacks. Please avoid the following trails until trail conditions improve: High Peaks Wilderness - all trails above 2,500 feet where wet, muddy, snow conditions still prevail, specifically: Algonquin, Colden, Feldspar, Gothics, Indian Pass, Lake Arnold Cross-Over, Marcy, Marcy Dam - Avalanche - Lake Colden, which is extremely wet, Phelps Trail above Johns Brook Lodge, Range Trail, Skylight, Wright, all "trail-less" peaks, and all trails above Elk Lake and Round Pond in the former Dix Mountain Wilderness. Giant Mountain Wilderness - all trails above Giant's Washbowl, "the Cobbles," and Owl Head Lookout. McKenzie Mountain Wilderness - all trails above 2,500 feet where wet, muddy, snow conditions still prevail, specifically Whiteface, Esther, Moose and McKenzie Mountains. Sentinel Range Wilderness: all trails above 2,500 feet where wet, muddy, snow conditions still prevail, specifically Pitchoff Mountain. DEC is urging hikers to postpone hikes in the higher elevations to protect New York's trail system and help DEC manage the largest wilderness in the Northeast. Visit DEC's website for a list of alternative hikes (PDF, 42 KB). Due to winter weather and conditions lasting into late April and early May, many seasonal access roads in the Adirondacks which are typically open by the Memorial Day Holiday Weekend will remain closed. DEC closes seasonal access roads each spring for mud season. The roads are opened to public motor vehicle use only after they dry and harden, and all necessary maintenance and repairs are completed. The following seasonal access roads, or portions of them, will remain closed this weekend: Blue Mountain Wild Forest (Township 19 Conservation Easement Tract) O'Neill Flow Road Five Mile Conservation Easement Tract Five Mile Road Gold Mine Conservation Easement Tract Gold Mine Road Grass River Wild Forest (and nearby conservation easement lands) Streeter Lake Road Spruce Mountain Road Long Pond Main Haul Road Gulf Brook Road High Peaks/Dix Mountain Wilderness South Meadow Lane Elk Lake Road Gulf Brook Road (Boreas Ponds Tract) Kushaqua Conservation Easement Tract North Branch Road Mud Pond Road Moose River Plains Complex Limekiln Lake - Cedar River Road (aka Moose River Plains Road) between the Cedar River Gate (Indian Lake side) and Lost Pond Road Otter Brook Road beyond the bridge over the South Branch Moose River Rock Dam Road Vanderwhacker Wild Forest Gulf Brook Road (Boreas Ponds Tract) Check DEC's website for other tips on spring outdoor recreation and weekly updates on Adirondack Backcountry Information. Source: https://www.dec.ny.gov/press/113740.html
  10. Craig

    Sawyer Mountain

    A great little hike for a beginner, young family, or for me that hasn't been out hiking since December. The hike is only about 1.1 miles to the summit. It took me longer to drive to the trail head than it did to hike the round trip of 2.2 miles. I arrived at the trail head around 8:30am. I would have the trail to myself for the hike. One of the benefits of hiking in the middle of the week. There wasn't anyone at Blue Mountain trail head either when I passed by. [iMAGE_RIGHT][ATTACH=full]1686[/ATTACH][/iMAGE_RIGHT] I grabbed my pack, let the pups out, signed in, and we were off. The trail is an easy climb, one of the easiest summits in the Adirondacks, and fairly dry. There were a couple areas that were muddy, but easy enough to rock hop through. It was a mix of hardwoods and sparse fir trees the entire way. It must be a cool hike in the summer with the canopy of leaves overhead. I was thinking this mountain can be pretty busy with hikers in the summer months based on its proximity to nearby campgrounds and vacation rentals. That and the small parking area at the trail head could pose a problem with parking. As I progressed up the trail I found towards the top ridge there are partial views from ledges on the left near the summit. A short whack over to a small lookout provided some views. Back to the trail and past the wooded summit was the described rock ledge with a nice overlook that provided some decent views, and a swarm of hungry black flies. The trail head is located between Indian Lake and Blue Mountain Lake on the west side of Route 28, the parking is well marked. It is a short distance south of Lake Durant campground. I did a brief search on the history of Sawyer mountain and had trouble finding much on it, other than what appears is that it is part of a recreational easement with New York State. On my way back home I took a spin into the Lake Durant Campground. I grabbed a map and drove around checking out the campsites. This is a nice campground that has several nice sites, many of which are on the lake itself. Pictures
  11. Craig

    Sawyer Mountain

    A great little hike for a beginner, young family, or for me that hasn't been out hiking since December. The hike is only about 1.1 miles to the summit. It took me longer to drive to the trail head than it did to hike the round trip of 2.2 miles. I arrived at the trail head around 8:30am. I would have the trail to myself for the hike. One of the benefits of hiking in the middle of the week. There wasn't anyone at Blue Mountain trail head either when I passed by. I grabbed my pack, let the pups out, signed in, and we were off. The trail is an easy climb, one of the easiest summits in the Adirondacks, and fairly dry. There were a couple areas that were muddy, but easy enough to rock hop through. It was a mix of hardwoods and sparse fir trees the entire way. It must be a cool hike in the summer with the canopy of leaves overhead. I was thinking this mountain can be pretty busy with hikers in the summer months based on its proximity to nearby campgrounds and vacation rentals. That and the small parking area at the trail head could pose a problem with parking. As I progressed up the trail I found towards the top ridge there are partial views from ledges on the left near the summit. A short whack over to a small lookout provided some views. Back to the trail and past the wooded summit was the described rock ledge with a nice overlook that provided some decent views, and a swarm of hungry black flies. The trail head is located between Indian Lake and Blue Mountain Lake on the west side of Route 28, the parking is well marked. It is a short distance south of Lake Durant campground. I did a brief search on the history of Sawyer mountain and had trouble finding much on it, other than what appears is that it is part of a recreational easement with New York State. On my way back home I took a spin into the Lake Durant Campground. I grabbed a map and drove around checking out the campsites. This is a nice campground that has several nice sites, many of which are on the lake itself.
  12. 2018 GARDEN PARKING/SHUTTLE SCHEDULE Once again the Town of Keene will manage the Garden Parking Lot in KeeneValley in accordance with an Adopt a Resource Agreement with New York State Department of Conservation. The Town of Keene will also serve as operator of a public transportation system that will serve hikers and the general public. This program was initiated in response to the illegal and unsafe parking that prevailed. The parking fees pay for attendants on weekends, maintenance and winter snowplowing of the Garden, Rooster Comb and Roaring Brook Parking Lots, and portable toilets. Commencing Friday, May 11th, a fee of $10.00 American (Canadian @ $13.00) per calendar day, 12:01 AM to midnight, will be assessed for parking at the Garden Lot. The daily fee will continue through the month of October. An attendant will be at the Garden Lot from 7:00 AM until 7:00 PM on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays during this period. Town Employees and DEC Rangers will monitor the lot during the week. The shuttle will operate from the Southwest corner of Marcy Field, off Route 73, when the Garden Parking Lot is full, beginning with two Holiday Weekends in May, from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM, as follows: Victoria Day Weekend - May 19th, 2oth & 21st Memorial Day Weekend - May 26th, 27th & 28th Shuttle operation will resume on Saturday, June 16th, operating on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays. Sunday, October 14th will be the last day of operation. A fee of $10.00 American (Canadian @ $13.00) will be charged per person for a round trip. Thank you for your continued support in this project. We hope that reasonable management will ensure continued access to the High Peaks Wilderness. Town of Keene 10892 NYS Route 9N Keene, NY 12942 | 518-576-4444 Home•Departments•Services•Events•Town Boards•2018 Garden Parking /Shuttle Information•Sitemap
  13. Have a safe and enjoyable outdoor recreational experience on the lands and waters of the Adirondacks. Properly plan and prepare for your outdoor adventure. Minimize the impact on the mountains and forests, rivers and brooks, ponds and lakes, and the wildlife of the Adirondacks. Check the Backcountry Information for the Adirondacks web pages for more detailed information on access, outdoor recreation infrastructure, and conditions for those planning to recreate in the Adirondacks. This bulletin provides only the most recent notices. Emergency Situations: If you get lost or injured; keep calm and stay put. If you have cell service, call the DEC Forest Ranger Emergency Dispatch (518-408-5850). Stay warm and dry by separating yourself from the wet snow with a thicker layer on the ground such as your pack. Protect yourself from the elements by building a shelter with items around you and in your pack. Use a space blanket for extra warmth. More information on hiking safety and what to pack. Would you like your photo shared in our weekly bulletin? Send us your photos that represent current backcountry conditions in the Adirondacks. Send in your photos with your name and photo location/brief description to Info.R5@dec.ny.gov or simply tag #NYSDEC on Instagram. PLAN Weather forecasts and conditions can and do change quickly. Check the current National Weather Service Forecast and be prepared for the forecasted conditions or change your plans. Varying trail conditions: Ice is still present on all trails in middle and high elevations. Carry crampons on all hikes. Plan to encounter a mix of mud and ice at lower elevations. There have been many ice related accidents reported on trails and mountain slopes. Please heed ice warnings to ensure your safety on all trails. Mud: With warming temperatures at low elevations, trails have begun to muddy. Walk through the mud, not around. This will avoid widening the trail, trampling trailside vegetation and help to protect fragile wildlife habitats. Wear waterproof hiking boots and gaiters to ensure comfort and safety while hiking through mud. All-terrain bikers advised to avoid all trails until trails have dried, hardened, and undergone all maintenance. High waters-stream crossings may be impassable. Prepare to take alternate routes or turn back if a stream crossing is impassable. Fast moving streams should be avoided. Keep dogs on leashes near fast moving water. Fisherman should use a flotation device when wading in waterways as well as carry a walking stick for added balance. PREPARE Properly prepare to better ensure a safe and enjoyable winter recreation experience. Spring recreation tips: It's spring and people are eager to get out into the warming weather or squeeze in the last of winter recreation. Mud season presents unique challenges for outdoor recreation. Weather is often volatile: rain, sleet, freezing rain, snow, and even thunderstorms can occur, sometimes on the same day. Trails are muddy, and high, fast-moving waters make stream crossings on trails dangerous. Seasonal access roads remain closed while they dry and spring maintenance is completed. Paddlers: Always wear a personal flotation device (PFD) (PFD’s are required before May 1st). Water temperatures are cold. A person in the water can quickly lose the ability to keep their head above water. Use caution entering and exiting your canoe or kayak. Expect high water levels and swift currents. Research your trip ahead of time and heed any high-water warnings or advisories for select paddling routes. Watch closely for trees, branches, rocks and debris both above the surface and underwater. PRACTICE LEAVE NO TRACE Follow proper trail etiquette to maintain minimal impact on the environment and the natural resources of the Adirondacks as well as ensuring an enjoyable outdoor experience for all visitors by following the Seven Principles of Leave No Trace. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces (Principle #2): As snow next to the trails melts, compacted ice in the center creates “monorails.” Monorails can be tough to traverse. Take your time, use crampons and other traction devices for walking directly on the monorail. This avoids post-holing in trailside snow and trampling fragile vegetation and wildlife habitats. Trekking poles are useful for balance. [*]Plan Ahead and Prepare (Principle #1): [*] Layering for spring hiking: Temperatures at the trail head will vary from temperatures at your destination. Higher elevations and exposed summits can have significantly colder temperatures than the base of the mountain even on warm, sunny days. Pack extra non-cotton, wind protectant layers and be sure to use them once exposed or feeling colder to help prevent hypothermia. [*]Respect Wildlife (Principle #6): [*] View wildlife from a distance using binoculars or a spotting scope to observe the natural behavior of animals. It’s safer for wildlife, especially vulnerable populations like young animals, breeding and nesting birds, and wintering raptors. Do not feed wildlife. Feeding can create dependence on humans and increase disease in wildlife. This includes food scraps along trails such as orange peels and apple cores. Carry out all food scraps GENERAL CONDITIONS/NOTICES Learn the conditions you will encounter from Adirondack Backcountry Information. Winter Refuses to Leave: Much of the Adirondacks above 1,500 feet elevation received 8 to 20 inches of snow on the last Sunday of April. See the NERFC Snow Page for current snow information. Deep snow (2-3 feet) and ice are present above 3,000 feet with even deeper snow above 4,000 feet. Snow and ice present between 2,500 and 3000 feet elevation. Patchy snow and ice are present between 2,000 and 2,500 feet elevation – especially in wooded areas, on north facing slopes, ravines, and other shaded areas. Below 2,000 feet elevation most or all of the snow has melted due to warm weather, strong winds, and rain. Snow may still be present in wooded areas, on north facing slopes, ravines, and other shaded areas between 1,500 and 2,000. [*]Trail Conditions: [*] High elevation (above 3,000 feet) trails are covered in ice and deep soft snow. Carry and use crampons and snowshoes. Climbing or mountaineering crampons may be required in some places. Moderately High elevation (2,500 to 3,000 feet) trails are icy as compacted snow has turned to ice. Carry and use crampons. Climbing or mountaineering crampons may be required in some places.Snowshoes should be carried for any off trail excursions. Middle elevation (1,500 to 2,500 ft) trails contain patches of mud and ice. Compacted snow has turned to ice creating “monorails” on the trails as surrounding snow melts. Wear proper foot wear and carry trail crampons (microspikes) on all hikes. Walk on monorails and through mud and water to avoid post-holing in trailside snow, trampling vegetation, and eroding trails. Low elevation (below 1,500 ft) trails contain mud and water. Wear proper foot wear. Walk through mud and water - not around - to avoid eroding and widening trails and trampling trailside vegetation. [*]Mountain Summit Conditions: Conditions will be more extreme than those found at the trailhead. Temperatures will be colder, winds will be stronger, ice will be present, and snow will be present and deeper. Check the National Weather Service Mountain Point Forecasts for selected summits. [*]Water Levels: Rain and melting snow have raised water levels. Rivers and streams are flowing high and fast. See the USGS Current Water Data for New York for stream flow of selected waters. [*]Stream Crossings: Due to high swift waters, crossing may be dangerous or impossible, especially in the afternoon when snow melt increases. Streams and drainages that are passable in the morning may not be in the afternoon. [*]Lakes and Ponds: Ice is completely gone on lower elevation and middle elevation lakes and ponds just in time for the May opening of fishing seasons for many warm water species. High elevation ponds are still ice covered, but the ice is not safe. [*]Water Temperatures: Water temperatures are very cold. Paddlers and boaters should wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD, aka Life Jacket)! People immersed in cold waters can lose the ability to think clearly and move quickly after only a short time in the water. Anglers fishing from shore or wading should wear a personal flotation device. [*]Seasonal Access Roads: All gates on seasonal access roads throughout the Adirondacks are closed for mud season. Seasonal access roads will remain closed until they have dried and hardened, and all needed repairs and maintenance are completed. [*]Statewide Burn Ban: There is a statewide burn ban in effect until May 14th. Open burning of debris is the largest single cause of spring wildfires in New York State. When temperatures are warmer and the past fall's debris and leaves dry out, wildfires can start and spread easily and be further fueled by winds and a lack of green vegetation. [*] DEC will post a Fire Danger Map rating forecast daily for the 2018 fire season on its website. SPECIFIC NOTICES Notices below reflect recent changes in conditions and recreation infrastructure work completed by DEC and its partners. High Peaks Wilderness: Lake Colden Caretaker Report Muddy trails between Loj Trailhead and Marcy Dam. Ice beyond Marcy Dam Deep soft snow beyond Indian Falls on the VanHoevenberg Trail; McIntyre Falls on the Algonquin Trail Avalanche Pass [*]Trail between Boundary and Lake Colden is sloppy and wet [*]40+ inches (100+ cm) of snow at Colden Caretaker Cabin (2,750 feet (838 m)) [*]Saranac Lake Wild Forest: Paddlers and boaters should use caution in the vicinity of Lower Locks as the Saranac River is flowing high and swift over the dam at the locks. [*]Saranac Lake Wild Forest: Middle Saranac Lake is free of ice. [*]Lake Flower Boat Launch: The boat launch is open but due to a clean-up project removing contaminated sediments from Lake Flower’s Pontiac Bay no parking is available on site. DEC is working on obtaining alternate parking opportunities. [*]Northville Boat Launch: The Northville Boat Launch and Parking Area on State Route 30 is open for use. [*]Mount Tom State Forest (Town of White Creek, Washington County): The gates on Notch Lane, are open. HIGHLIGHTED TRAIL- Coon Mountain, Westport, NY Coon Mountain is on the Coon Mountain Preserve, which is owned by The Nature Conservancy. The trail is 1 mile to the summit. From the trailhead the path starts climbing almost immediately. The trail never gets too steep, but it does have a moderate and constant incline. One short section gets steep as it passes through a rocky section, where footing is a bit more difficult. This is a perfect family outing, and if you are in the area it should not be missed. The views over Lake Champlain and into the Green Mountains of Vermont are amazing. Description from Champlain Area Trails. Leave No Trace: Staying on the marked trails is a simple way to protect Coon Mountain’s natural areas. Walking off trail causes erosion, tramples plants, and can increase the likelihood of invasive plants becoming established. Trailhead: From the intersection of Route 9N and Route 22 in Westport, take Route 22 north. Follow this for 0.4 mile and turn right on Lakeshore Road, then continue for 2.5 miles and turn left on Halds Road. The trailhead is on the right in just under a mile. Coon Mountain Preserve: The 318-acre Coon Mountain Preserve is a naturalist's paradise and a viewer's dream. It is famous for its mysterious and craggy interior, with rocky outcrops and dark hemlock forests. Steep cliffs and talus slopes (accumulations of rock debris at the base of a cliff or steep mountain slope) reveal vistas of oak-pine forests, small fens and hardwood swamps. Coon Mountain Preserve has an abundance of wildlife to watch including migratory songbirds, broad-winged hawks, and porcupine. Powered by Source https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/NYSDEC/bulletins/1eddefa
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