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Tag Archives: Orange County
This was the third time I completed this particular hike, one of my favorites in the New York area. The first time was a solo hike, On June 12, 2011, and the second time was with friends, on October 14, 2012. This was the first time that Batya had been on this hike.
This was my third trip to the western part of Black Rock Forest. I only took a few photos. For a more complete record of this part of the park, see my blog post from 2010.
After weeks of temperatures in the 80s and 90s, I took off from work to benefit from a day with temperatures in the low 70s. I drove to the parking lot of Fort Montgomery State Historic Site, where I began my hike. I did not investigate the historic site, and do not believe there is much to see there, other than earthen redoubts. A companion fort, Fort Clinton, was built a short distance to the south, across Popolopen Gorge, but was later demolished during construction of U.S. Route 9W and the Bear Mountain Bridge.
Six of us met on Route 17A near the Mt. Peter Ski Area, then shuttled in an SUV 3.7 miles east on Route 17A, to a parking area inside Sterling Forest. There, around 11:00 a.m., we began hiking northeast on the Highlands Trail.
I joined five hikers at Harriman, most of whom I had hiked with previously with the Jewish Outdoors Club. Whereas the week before, I had seen a lot of snow on my drive to the park, this Sunday I saw very little. The temperatures had been above freezing for most of the week, and I thought it possible that all the snow had melted from Harriman.
New York City does not presently have any snow on the ground, but I thought that the parks that I frequent, being further to the north, might have snow. But how would I learn that? While weather reports can tell you what is happening at a place at the present time, there’s no easy way to find out if it has previously snowed there, with snow remaining on the ground. While cameras have proliferated in cities, most are recording for security, rather than presenting a feed that is publicly accessible on the Internet. Thus, the only webcams I was able to find that were helpful were from the parking lots of a couple of schools in Connecticut, showing snow on the ground. This suggested I would also find snow on the ground in the New York parks that I frequent. Therefore, I decided to choose a hike that was relatively flat, as I knew that I would not have good traction in snow.
With a few variations, this was a repeat of my June 12, 2011 solo hike. I therefore did not take many photographs and will not offer much of a description, as I described the hike in my earlier post.
I went hiking with four friends, selecting the western part of Black Rock Forest, which I remembered featured a pretty waterfall. As I had been on these trails previously, almost two years earlier, I didn’t document the entire hike, and therefore only have a few photos.
I recruited Yigal and Nachi to go hiking with me, and Nachi recruited three other people. I suggested three or four hikes to Nachi, and he selected Storm King, which I had never visited before.
The weather finally cooperated, so I drove to Harriman, where I parked in the Elk Pen off Highway 17 and began climbing the Appalachian Trail (AT) northbound (actually east-southeast) into the park. There’s a pretty steep 400′ climb up Green Pond Mountain at the start of the hike, from about 600′ to 1000′ elevation, which made me stop to catch my breath for a moment. But I was fine the rest of the day, with the elevation for the most part pretty steady from 1100′ to 1300′. I carried my fleece jacket with me, but it spent most of the time in my backpack, as the weather was warm enough, especially when coupled with my exertion.