Trout Pond

TroutDec2014_03camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Wedneday, December 31st Cindy and I decided to take our last hike of 2014 at Trout Pond. We thought this appropriate as it is a place we often visit. We were in no big hurry to start especially since the temperature was still in the high teens at 9:00 AM with a slight breeze blowing. We got dressed and headed down to the post office at about 10:00 Am and then drove to Roscoe with Sheila anxiously waiting in the backseat. I drove through Roscoe and headed toward Morton Hill Road just outside of Roscoe. I made the left and drove to the intersection with Russell Brook Road. I turned around and parked on the shoulder of Morton Hill Road as the parking area is on private property. I decided to wear mittens Cindy and I also stuffed our Microspikes in the pack. Continue reading

Weather for the week of December 28th

The week of December 28th began with an overcast Sunday with intermittent showers and drizzle. Although the temperature reached into the mid 40’s, it felt colder with the moisture in the air and a slight breeze. The forecast for the rest of the week calls for sunny weather but progressively colder temperatures. The temperature will drop to the high 20’s on Wednesday but then begin to rebound with slight increase thorough Friday. Saturday’s forecast is uncertain but calls for a temperature in the high 30’s but with snow and heavy rain. This forecast is for the lower elevations. The snow and ice that were accumulating on the peaks melted some in the higher temperatures and rain. The lower temperatures will turn this into ice and traction devices are HIGHLY recommended! Snow shoes are a good idea even if they remain strapped to your pack. Remember, the weather forecast is only a prediction and always contains percentages. Be prepared and have a plan for the most likely and least likely forecast! Are you prepared to stay out overnight on a trail? Conditions in the morning can change drastically by afternoon. Conditions at the trailhead do not always reflect the conditions on the peaks! Variable trail and weather conditions are a hallmark of these mountains. BE CAREFUL AND BE PREPARED!

Fort Lee to New York Border

FortLeeNYBorderDec2014_01camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Saturday, December 27th I was ready to get out after a week of poor weather and a joyous Christmas celebration. I had planned to do this hike on Friday but I was exhausted and decided I wanted to enjoy the moment. The hike I planned was the section of the Long Path from Fort Lee, New Jersey to the New York Border which is section 1 of the Long Path. This would complete the Long Path for me and allow me to become become one of the less than 150 people who are End to Enders. This section is a little over 12 miles so I knew I would need a ride. The Nyack Car Service transported Shiela and I on our hike of section 2 and said they could do the same for this section. The forecast for the area for Saturday was for partly sunny skies with temperatures in the low 50’s. Friday night I got a text from my son Karl saying that he would like to go aSaturday Saturday morning I got my equipment and Sheila into the car at about 7:00 AM and headed to Bethel to pick up Karl. The temperature was only 26 degrees so I dressed in my 26 degree outfit. On the way I had to stop to take pictures of the magnificent sunrise. The reds, purples and yellows were some of the best I had ever seen! Continue reading

Weather for the week of December 21st

The week of December 21st began with an overcast Sunday with noticeable moisture in the air and temperatures rising only intone upper 30’s. Monday and Tuesday appear to be cloudy with increasing temperatures but also increasing moisture in the air. The rising temperatures will peak on Wednesday when highs are expected to be in the low 50’s. Wednesday will also see a series of downpours throughout the day. Any drop in temperature could change some of the rain to snow or sleet. The temperature drop will begin on Thursday as the mercury hits the mid 40’s with a chance of snow showers. This trend continues on Friday and Saturday as the highs drop into the low 40’s on Friday and the high 30’s on Saturday. A shower is possible Saturday afternoon. This forecast is for the lower elevations. Snow and ice are accumulating on the peaks and traction devices are HIGHLY recommended! Remember, the weather forecast is only a prediction and always contains percentages. Be prepared and have a plan for the most likely and least likely forecast! Are you prepared to stay out overnight on a trail? Conditions in the morning can change drastically by afternoon. Conditions at the trailhead do not always reflect the conditions on the peaks! Variable trail and weather conditions are a hallmark of these mountains. BE CAREFUL AND BE PREPARED!

New Jersey Border to Nyack

NJBorderNyackDec2014_01camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Saturday, December 20th I was ready to get out after a week of poor weather, coaching commitments and a stint as school nurse. I had planned to hike the section of the Long Path from the New Jersey Border to Nyack which is section 2 of the Long Path. This would leave only section 1 from Fort Lee, NJ to the New Jersey border for me to complete the Long Path. This section is a little over 10 miles so I knew I would need a ride. I called the Nyack Car Service and they said they could transport Shiela and I for about $20. It was about 23 degrees when we left Livingston Manor at around 7:00 AM. The forecast for the Nyack area was for temperatures in the 40’s with some sun in the mid-morning and I dressed accordingly. I chose the easiest route by driving down Route 17 to Harriman where I picked up the Thruway south. I knew I wanted exit 11 and expected some heavy traffic as this exit is near the Palisades Center Shopping Mall. After getting off the exit I turned left on Route 59 and parked in a strip mall. I called the car service and they were there within 5 minutes. I explained where I wanted to go and we were off. The drive was only about 15 minutes south on Route 9W and we were there at 9:00 AM. The driver dropped us off and we were hiking by 9:05 AM. Continue reading

Weather for the Week of December 14th

The week of December 14th begins with two days of mixed sun and clouds with highs reaching into the upper 30’s. Less wind will make the air feel about the same as the actual temperature. Tuesday’s temperatures will be nearly the same but there is the potential for rain most of the day. The rain may stay around for some showers on Wednesday morning but the afternoon should see a clearing trend with Temperatures rising to the low 40’s. Thursday and Friday appear to be sunny with some clouds but the highs may not make it above freezing. On Saturday there may be some snow showers with temperatures marginally higher. This forecast is for the lower elevations. Snow and ice are accumulating on the peaks and traction devices are HIGHLY recommended! Remember, the weather forecast is only a prediction and always contains percentages. Be prepared and have a plan for the most likely and least likely forecast! Are you prepared to stay out overnight on a trail? Conditions in the morning can change drastically by afternoon. Conditions at the trailhead do not always reflect the conditions on the peaks! Variable trail and weather conditions are a hallmark of these mountains. BE CAREFUL AND BE PREPARED!

Landing Road to High Tor

LandingRdHighTorDec2014_02camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Saturday, December 13th I was ready to get out after a week of snow and ice and coaching commitments. I had planned to hike on Friday but the low temperatures coupled with the stiff breeze dissuaded me. An early morning ambulance call on Saturday made hiking more difficult as I was pretty tired. In addition, the temperature did not seem any warmer and the breeze was blowing harder than the day before! I ha almost decided to wait until after church on Sunday but decided I needed to get out! Sheila agreed wholeheartedly with this decision. I planned to hike a section of the Long Path from Landing Rd to High Tor. This is the second part of section 3 which is one of the last three sections I have to hike. I also wanted to continue up to High Tor since I had not hiked the first part of section 4. I also remembered that the last time I was at High Tor with my wife we could not see much due to the fog. I knew that there was the potential for some great views. Continue reading

Neversink Unique: Three Falls

DentonHighMulletDec2014_06camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Sunday, December 7thth, I wanted to get out and hike since the weather forecast for the rest of the week indicated a mix of rain, ice and snow starting Tuesday and extending through Friday. It had been two years since I lost my best hiking companion, Sheba, to Lyme disease and I knew taking a hike with Sheila would make me feel better. Sheba was a little over 14 years old and had a very bad case of Lyme Disease diagnosed in the spring of 2012. She was still very alert but her hips had deteriorated to the point where she could hardly support herself. Knowing that there was only one way to eliminate her pain didn’t make saying goodbye any easier. I will always miss her and always remember what great trail dog she was when she was healthy. Fortunately, Sheila, my new dog has proved to be a great companion at home and on the trails. I decided to go to the Neversink Unique area after church since there had been some rain recently and I wanted to check out the water falls. Continue reading

Weather for the week of December 7

The week of December 7th began with a warmer Sunday with temperatures rising to near 40 degrees and beautiful blue shies. Monday will be cooler with increasing clouds. The forecast for the rest of the week is unsettled with a winter storm watch in effect. An approaching storm will bring rain, ice and snow to the Catskills but the amounts of each will depend on the storm track and the location within the area. Currently the forecast calls for the precipitation to begin on Tuesday and continue through Thursday morning. Any snow will be heavy and wet and the worst conditions are expected to be from Tuesday night through Wednesday morning. Some snow showers may hang around for Thursday. High temperatures during the day will hover right around freezing. By Friday the sun returns and temperatures rise until early next week. This forecast is for the lower elevations. Snow and ice are accumulating on the peaks and traction devices are HIGHLY recommended! Remember, the weather forecast is only a prediction and always contains percentages. Be prepared and have a plan for the most likely and least likely forecast! Are you prepared to stay out overnight on a trail? Conditions in the morning can change drastically by afternoon. Conditions at the trailhead do not always reflect the conditions on the peaks! Variable trail and weather conditions are a hallmark of these mountains. BE CAREFUL AND BE PREPARED!

Nyack to Landing Road

NyackLandingRdDec2014_09camera32gps_pictalltrailscaltopomapmyhikeOn Friday, December 5th I planned to hike a section of the Long Path from Nyack to Landing Rd. This is the first part of section 3 which is one of the last three sections I have to hike. When I awoke at 7:00 AM the temperature was 16 degrees and the weather forecast for Livingston Manor indicated snow and ice were on the way. The forecast for Nyack was calling for mostly cloudy skies with rain in the late afternoon. I decided to take my chances and attempt the hike despite the questionable weather. I got ready dressing for twenty degree temperatures as we left Livingston Manor at 8:00 AM. I chose the easiest route by driving down Route 17 to Harriman where I picked up the Thruway south. I knew I wanted exit 11 but forgot that it was the last exit before the Tappan Zee Bridge! The traffic was heavy but moving and we got to the exit at about 9:20 AM. I took a left at the end of the exit onto Route 59. I immediately pulled into a parking lot and parked just east of Mountainview Avenue. I put Sheila on her leash, stowed my poles in my pack and left the Microspikes in the car as we started our hiked at 9:30 AM. Continue reading