April 3, 2021 § Leave a comment
Having purchased my own snowshoes from REI, I was ready for a more challenging adventure. I had already been to High Point 3 times, the first written about here, and then two more follow up trips, the weekend prior where I introduced the activity to Robert Risberg and his family. Robert had actually mentioned that he and his family were taking some time up outside of New Paltz, NY and asked whether I would be interested in a snowshoe hike in the Catskills. I was very interested, however when I checked in with him, he no longer had the time in his schedule, so I looked to Mike to see if he wanted to give the Catskills a go. Now keep in mind, getting to High Point takes about 90 minutes, maybe less when there is no traffic, however getting to the Catskills is 3 hours, so if plans aren’t made to spend the night up there, and they weren’t, then that is 3 hours up, hike all day, and then a 3 hour drive home. Six hours driving in one day is lot for anyone. Add the efforts of a snowshoe hike, and chances are high, I would get a good nights sleep when it was all over.« Read the rest of this entry »
April 2, 2021 § 1 Comment
An unusual thing happened this winter. It snowed! It didn’t just snow, but it snowed a lot. I live at the Jersey Shore, where I wouldn’t say that it doesn’t snow, because it does, but the Jersey Shore just isn’t a place where it snows a lot. At least not consistently. Occasionally there are storms that come, and dump, and the conditions are right, and a lot gets dumped, but those conditions are rare. This year, the snow gods aligned their energies, and the conditions were right. That isn’t necessarily enough though, because sometimes, when it snows a lot at the Jersey Shore, it doesn’t snow a lot where it’s better to have a lot of snow. Like in the mountains. That wasn’t the case this year. While the Jersey Shore got 10 inches of snow, High Point NJ got almost two feet! With two feet of snow, there are a lot of options on the winter sports table.
The day after the storm ended, and the roads were clear enough, I drove over to my local hiking park, Hartshorne Woods, and donned my micro spikes, and set off into the normal loop I do with Mike and Jed. The going wasn’t too bad. There was about 8 inches of snow, and only a few people had been on the trail, however that included one brave soul who took in Laurel Ridge on cross country skis. A cross country skier, I am not, but Laurel Ridge seems like a pretty challenging route on skis, but this skier was perhaps a very experienced one, and able to make a go of it, as the tracks looked to be fairly stable, and I didn’t see anything that looked like the person had suffered for their choice of route. There were no broken trees, or bloodied bushes, so control seemed to have been maintained.« Read the rest of this entry »
April 1, 2021 § Leave a comment
The planning of this weekend has somewhat been discussed, as here for example, already, and perhaps there is some humor and purpose to scribing some of what the weekend actually entailed. There was at least one first for any of these “Weekend Warrior” type trips, and perhaps, to some degree, maybe another, though the former is much more notable, than the latter.
I call it a weekend, but really it’s a three day weekend. The average age of the crew, brought down somewhat by the recent addition of a one Dan G… (name protected to protect the innocent), hovers in the very high 50’s if not almost low 60’s, so, looking back (as I am at the moment) to all the weekends that have come before (and there were many), the trend (some would say not a great trend) has been towards less backpacking, and more hiking. That is to say, backpack in, establish a basecamp (I think one word works fine here), consume beers the rest of Friday which could (not always, but has) include a late night hike (but this weekend did not), and then a hike (sometimes challenging, sometimes not) on Saturday, leaving plenty of time to harvest more trapped CO2 in form of downed timber, followed by more beer consumption, and finally a backpack out. On occasion, there has been a late night hike as well, however, the few times that has occurred has been within the “late night hike rich” confines of Dolly Sods in West Virginia.« Read the rest of this entry »