Prospect Mountain – 5.21.17

Prospect Mountain is one of the more popular hikes in the Lake George area. With a toll road leading to the summit, it’s an an accessible mountain with pretty views of Lake George.  It has a reputation of being one of the easier hikes in the Lake George area, however it is steep and might be a bit challenging for an out-of-shape hiker. With water and rest breaks it’s definitely doable for anyone.

The trailhead is right in the heart of the Village of Lake George off of Montcalm Street.

It took Jenna and I about an hour and 30 minutes to get to the top. From the trailhead to the summit is about 2 miles. At the top there is a picnic area and a parking lot.

We stopped for about 30 minutes on top to have a snack and walk around. The descent was fast! There was a lot of open rock to walk down which may be tricky in wet conditions.

Prospect Mountain
Distance 4.0 mi RT
Elevation gain 1,625′
Summit elevation 2,021′
Total time 2 hrs, 30 minutes (including stops)

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Hurricane Mountain Fire Tower – 5.13.17

This past weekend, I was up in Lake Placid for a conference (my first conference in the nutrition profession!) and was reunited with my old loves.

Iconic view of the high peaks from the Plains of Abraham

Mirror Lake

Heart Lake

Since I didn’t get to do any hiking while I was up for the conference, Skyler and I drove up to hike Hurricane on Saturday. There was rain in the forecast for the afternoon, so we met at Exit 20 at 7am, arriving at the Route 9N trailhead at about 8:30.

It is Mud Season in the high peaks, so DEC issues warnings to stay off of the trails above 2500 feet in elevation. One of the trails listed under recommended alternative hikes is Hurricane Mountain, one of my favorites. Hurricane is also a great warm-up hike for the season, with nearly 2,000 feet of elevation gain in the 3.2 miles to the summit.

The trails were dry (mostly) and in great shape.

The last time I hiked Hurricane, the fire tower was closed. They have recently restored it so this time I climbed to the top.

Hurricane has some of the best views, in my opinion!

Whiteface from afar.

We also beat the rain! I was a little concerned that we’d be socked in, but thankfully the weather held off.

Hurricane Mountain, via Route 9N
Distance: 6.4 mi RT
Ascent: ~2,000′
Total time: 3 hrs, 30 minutes (not including break on the summit)

Gear used: old navy running tights, tasc performance long sleeve merino base layer, Northface rain shell, Osprey Sirrus daypack, Kelty trekking poles, Keen Durand hiking boots, Smartwool hiking socks, 2L h20

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Hiking Indian Head in the Catskills

A few weeks ago it was super cold out. My hiking friend Skyler and I decided to go hiking (go figure!) It was before the huge snow storm so we were excited to not have to use snowshoes. However, there were a few inches of snow on the ground up in the mountains, so we just wore our microspikes. The trailhead to Indian Head and Twin Mountains is about 1.5 hours south of Albany. We were planning on hiking both since it was around a 7 mile hike total. With the windchill it was -13 degrees. With the appropriate clothing and gear, we were warm!

We got to the junction after about 90 minutes of hiking. We went left to Indian Head since it was only a half mile to the summit. It was cold so we were undecided if we were going to hike Twin. Neither of us particularly care about hiking all of the Catskill 35 peaks so it was an easy decision to leave Twin for another  (warmer) day.

Right before the summit there was a very icy section. We stopped for about 15 minutes to put on our crampons. So glad we had them with us. Skyler also had his ice ax which made it a little bit easier to carve steps into the ice. We got to the wooded summit and immediately turned around and headed back down. There were very few views on this hike. It was actually kind of disappointing because I had read this hike had some of the best views in the Catskills! But maybe the views are over on Twin. I’m not as familiar with the Catskills as I am with the Adirondacks and I have to admit that the ADK are my first love.

This trail was not difficult, but the ice made for some sketchy spots. I believe this trail is part of the Devil’s Path. We left our crampons on for the hike down, which went a lot faster than going up.

Indian Head Mountain 
Distance 5.3 mi RT from Prediger Road trailhead
Ascent 1,503′
Time 4 hrs, 15 min including stops

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Sleeping Beauty Solo Hike

Last month when the weather was warmer I decided to get outside and hike Sleeping Beauty in the Lake George area. This was my first Adirondack hike back in 2008 (before I had a blog!) and I had been meaning to go back and hike it again. Since the weather was warm and it was a pretty short hike, I felt confident that I could hike solo! I parked at the Hogstown trailhead and walked the 1.7 miles to Dacy Clearing.

This road / trail is open to snowmobiles so there were a few snowmobilers driving up and down this road. It was pretty annoying. The snow was getting mushy and would have been a pain to walk in with microspikes so I wore snowshoes for the entire hike. There was probably a foot of snow off the trail.

I continued up the trail that leads to Bump’s Pond, eventually coming to a trail leading to Erebus Mountain on the left. I continued straight, hiking around the pond.

Eventually I came a trail junction. The trail went straight to Fishbrook Pond, but I took a right to go to Sleeping Beauty.   It was about 1.0 from there to the summit. The trail never got too steep!

I had the entire summit to myself!

I ate a couple bites of my lunch and then headed back down. For some reason I wasn’t thrilled to be up there by myself. Hiking with friends is so much more fun! Instead of going back the way I came, I took a different trail back down Dacy Clearing. It was 1.1 miles down and a little bit steeper than the route I took up. It came out right on the snowmobile trail I had hiked in on.

The sun was shining! It was such  a nice day. I didn’t see anyone else until I started descending, which was surprising. I think I saw maybe two people wearing snowshoes. Everyone else was post-holing their way up, ruining the packed snow on the trail. It’s so frustrating.

Sleeping Beauty Loop
Distance 7.6 mi
Elevation 2,160′
Ascent 1,287′
Time 3 hrs, 34 minutes (including stops)

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Winter Snowshoe to Camp Santanoni

A couple of weeks ago a few friends and I snowshoed to the Great Adirondack Camp Santanoni in Newcomb. For a few weekends every winter, they open the camp up for visitors and serve hot chocolate in one of the huts by the lake. The special thing about this Camp is that it’s only accessible in the winter by snowshoe or cross country ski! It is a five mile journey to the camp from the parking area, making it a long hike, but totally worth it! The views on the walk in were amazing!

You can see Santanoni from the trail. When we got there we checked out the inside. It was huge! So many rooms.

The walls were covered in birch bark.

 

The arrows were pointing in the direction of the hot beverages. This one had a can of coffee on it! We sat and enjoyed our beverages for a little bit before hitting the trail back out.

It was a very warm day, the snow was slowly melting all around us.

Camp Santanoni
10.5 mi RT
4.5 hours including stops

The next Winter Weekend at Camp Santanoni is scheduled to be March 18-19!

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