Mohawk Hudson Chapter
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Trip Reports - 2018


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December 5 - High Rock: Moreau Lake State Park
A cold wintry day, an end-to-end thru hike (along snowed, icy trails) with two of us circling down and around a frozen over Lake Bonita, up to Lake Ann Lean-to for lunch in quiet woods, then topping High Rock to drop by short “wac” to trails, leading onto an Hudson River overlook and finally reaching down (after 6 miles over 5 hours) to our trail’s end at Spier Falls Road.

  Leader: Jean André Laverdure  Participants: John Tifft

... at Lake Ann Lean-to





November 24 - Survey of the Long Path through Thacher Park
After a little maneuvering to avoid a blocked road near Paint Mine, we started from the Stage Rd. trailhead and traversed the Long Path back to the Visitors Center. No major problems were noted; Dave sawed some overhanging and cross trail trees thin enough to saw. It was a nice crisp Autumn day walk.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski, David Esmond




November 14 - Wolf Creek Falls Preserve Hike
The original plan was to hike at Christman's Preserve in Delanson. However, on scouting the hike a few days before, we found it very muddy and we were unable to ford the Bozenkill to get to the second half of the hike. So we changed the location to Wolf Creek Falls Preserve in Altamont. The second thing to go wrong was that most of the people who had signed up for the hike were blocked from driving to it because of horrible traffic jams and multiple accidents on I-87 and route 146, due to an unexpected snow storm. So we continued with the hike in its new location, with the 4 people who could make it. The stream was full, waterfalls pretty, trails lovely with no wind and a bit of snow on the ground.

  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski, Bob Koppe (from Colorado, AMC member)






November 14 - Trail Work on the Taconic Crest Trail
Mike Boucher when opening the car doors at the Petersburg Pass encountered a vicious wind chill that almost caused us to turn back, but we ventured forth figuring the woods would provide a little defense against the wind. It did and we were able to complete the trek up Berlin, clearing what we could of the runoffs and cutting a number of trees that were thin enough to saw. We noted one tree that needed chain to be removed via chain saw and it was reported.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Mike Boucher




October 14 - Shaker Series 2: Shaker Museum Mt. Lebanon
On a beautiful autumn afternoon we walked among the Shaker buildings of the North and Church Families that began occupying the site in 1785 and continued to live there until 1932(Church Family)and 1947 (North Family). The properties are now owned my Darrow School and the Shaker Museum Mount Lebanon. There was interest in water supply and use, and two of the group scrambled up to the site of the unrestored reservoir.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Sheila Rorke, Karen Cedar, Karen Ross, Michael O'Brien, Tim O'Brien, Dale Blanchett, Rebecca Rector, Bob Armao

Mount Lebanon





October 14 - Prospect Mtn Loop, Mt Greylock Reservation
Our day was to be a hike up to Prospect Mtn looping back by way of the Money Brook Trail enjoying fall views along the way, which “we done do”. Unfortunately on our descent from Mount Prospect, mishap when Ellen lost her footing and hanging onto a sapling with her left hand, all her weight twisted her shoulder away, a dislocated shoulder!!! We began to backtrack just below a beautiful Mt Greylock outlook, our hurt hiker bravely climbed back up past to the summit with 911 rescuers reaching us along the Mt Prospect ridgeline taking our compeer once reaching Wilburs Crossing by ambulance to the North Adams Hospital. Ellen arrived home with a relocated shoulder early Monday morning, I pray to the "gods" her radial (nerve) damage becomes the quickest of heals.

  Leader: Jean André Laverdure  Co-leader: John Tifft  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski, John Susko

At Mt Prospect Cairn





October 8 - Shaker Series #1 Shaker Heritage Site Colonie
Four of us strolled around the first Shaker site in U.S. which began in 1775 on land rented from the Rensselaerwyck patroonship. We looked at the buildings that remain both in original and modified state, the cemetary, and then walked in the Ann Lee Nature Reserve.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Sheila Rorke, Blanche Nelson, Doris Bindl




October 6 - Trail Work on the Appalachian Trail
Mike Boucher and I cut back the vegetation along the section of our section that borders the river using respectively a weed whacker and the chapter's brush cutter. Jean and Dave surveyed the rest of the section. The work turned out to be shorter than anticipated and we had lunch at a Senior Center parking lot nearby before heading home.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Jean Laverdure, David Esmond, Mike Boucher




September 29 - Seed Planting at the Bozenkill Preserve.
As the last part of an invasive plant removal and replanting with native plant seed, I along with members of the Mohawk Land Conservancy "roughed' up the land prepared by removing invasive plants. After "roughing up" the land we spread native seed hoping for growth next Spring

  Participants: John Tifft




September 26 - Trail Work at the Shiffendecker Preserve
Because of heavy rains, a bridge had floated off its moorings a little bit downstream at the Shiffendecker Preserve. I mostly admired a block and tackle set up done by the members of the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy used to pull the bridge back into position. It was very satisfying to watch happen successfully while pulling on the rope.

  Participants: John Tifft




September 22 - Sat 9/22 GreyLock Mt. Lollipop Loop from Jones Nose to Rounds Rock
On a clear early Fall day 6 of us explored non traditional sections of the Greylock State Reservation that offered exceptional views and pleasant woods walking. Meeting a State Park Ranger hiking up (with a group) as we descended Jone's Nose, we learned that Seth Jones was here a mid-19th century innkeeper, sheep herder, even moonshiner ..., so adding a bit more color to our ramble.

  Leader: Jean Laverdure  Participants: Conor Gillis, Chris Boucher, Mike Boucher, Dave Esmond, John Tifft

Rounds Rock lunch at warm outlook!





August 21 - Giant Ledge hike
We hiked popular Giant Ledge in the Catskills on August 21. Luckily we had perfect weather. There were quite a few other hikers even on a Tuesday. The trail was very rocky, with 1000 feet of elevation gain, but rather short at less than four miles round trip. At the top we had a view east to more mountains.

  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Anne Finch, Bob Fakundiny, Janet Angelis, Anneliese Lawson, Kathleen Helfrich, Dee Portzer, Anne Sage

The whole gang with a companion!





August 10 - Conservation Work at Dyken Pond Environmental Center
Work was completed on the pollinator garden at Dyken Pond Environmental Education Center. Afterwards some of the participants hiked a little.


  Leader: Joshua Pulito  Participants: John Tifft, Jean Laverdure, Mary O'Connell, Deborah Richards






July 19 - Trail Work on the Appalachian Trail
MIke Boucher and I revisited our section of the Appalachian Trail to finish what we started on the 12th. Mike finished weed whacking the trail near the river, while I surveyed the rest of the trail.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Mike Boucher




July 13 - Invasive Species Identification Walk at Fox Preserve
Along with members of the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy, I explored the Fox Preserve on a invasive species identification walk led by Dave Behm.

  Leader: John Tifft




July 12 - Trail Work on the Appalachian Trail
Mike Boucher and I with power weed whackers in hand trimmed the sides of our adopted trail section of the AT. Judging by the size of the back pack on some of the hikers passing us by, there were a number of through hikers intently heading north.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Mike Boucher




July 11 - Citizen Science: Invasive Plant Removal at Pine Bush Preserve
Along with some staff from the Capital Region PRISM and staff from the Pine Bush Preserve, I helped remove some bittersweet found on the Pine Bush Preserve property.

  Leader: John Tifft






June 30 - Survey of the Long Path through Thacher Park
Dave and I surveyed the Long Path from the Old Stage Rd. parking lot to the Visitors Center finding little of note except for one "step over" log. On a hot day, we were grateful the shade that the tree cover provided.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: David Esmond




June 27 - Huckleberry Point Hike
We lost a few participants due to the possibility of rain, but seven of us went, including two new-to-us members with their two Labradoodles. This is an M-shaped trail with two high points and 1150 feet total elevation gain, leading to what is usually a gorgeous overlook of the Hudson Valley. This time it was cloudy and raining a bit, but we did see magnificent mountain laurels in bloom at the end of the trail, which means we picked the right date.

  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Karen Hadley, Sonja Rutter, Gerry Weber, Anneliese Lawson, Larry Sloman






June 27 - Trail Work at the Van Dyke Preserve
At this smallpreserve, we helped with the installation of more boardwalk, rerouting a muddy section of the trail, and transplanted some milkweed for the experimental beginnings of a monarch butterfly waystation. There were four other members of the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy who helped, but unfortunately I didn't get their names.

  Leader: Sawyer Cresap  Participants: John Tifft, David Esmond, Lorraine Plauth






June 20 - Hoosac Range Trail: ridge walking.
On a Hoosac Range ridge walk, our group followed the Range Trail to a vista spur east then beyond to outlook spur west before reaching Spruce Hill's top for lunch and outstanding views of Adams Town, including Mount Greylock. Going back, we stopped to explore a beaver pond alongside trail. Sunset Rock was a last rest stop to views, before our steep descent loop back to Route 2 (6.1 miles / 4:45 hours).

  Leader: Jean André Laverdure  Participants: Sharon Bonk, Kathleen Helfrich, Marion Grillon, Margaret Grogan, Blanche Nelson, Dorothy Taft

... looking west to Mount Williams!





June 12 - Beginning Phase of Pollinator Garden at Dyken Pond
With the able assistance of Peter Bakal and three of his partners, we were able to install an edging for the pollinator garden project which we are assisting the Dyken Pond Environmental Education Center with. While Peter, Josh, Don, Ron, Andy and Mike together put the edging in, Mary and I did some weeding.

  Leader: Joshu Pulito  Participants: Mike Boucher, Ron Kaplan, Andy Carlson, Don Berryman, Peter Bakal, John Tifft, Mary O'Connell






June 2 - Trails Day Work at Keleher Preserve
On this Trails Day, five of us helped clear a new path at the Keleher Preserve. It was a good feeling to be able to make more accessible this preserve which provides a wonderful outdoor experience for everyone!

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Mike Boucher, Ellen Kozlowski, Mary O'Connell, Kevin Cox






June 1 - Art Omi Ramble
Although rain threatened all morning, we were able to walking among the 60+ pieces of sculpture and architectural models located in the fields and woods of the Art Omi campus in Ghent. The Visitor Center also houses a small gallery. A staff member gave us a brief orientation and off we went among the mini sculpture of squirrels and a giant sculpture of a deer which prepared us for meeting two snapping turtles on in a field, another in a wetland.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Marion Doyle, Tony Eldering, Dorothy Russell, Susan Phelps, Peg Grogran, Kathleen Helbrich, Marcia Schultz, Blanche Nelson, Chuck Haley

ReActor (20160by Alex Schwader & Ward Shelley; a tiny house suspended above ground revolving in the wind





May 26 - Moxham Mountain
At first, there was a possibility of only two of us going on this hike. However, after waiting for what turned out to be a no show, another of our members showed up. It was her original intention to go on another hike that was to start a little later, but when she found out where we were going, she joined our hike, much to our delight. The day was perfect except for the bugs which only irritated us while we were getting ready to hike and when we had lunch.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Kathleen Helfrich, Ellen Kozlowski






May 21 - Trail Work at the Fox Preserve
Again volunteering to help out the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy, this member helped to install some fencing around a huge cottonwood tree, and cut some bittersweet from some to the trees there.

  Leader: John Tifft




May 16 - Taconic Crest Trai l/ Hopkins Forest Hike
A perfect blue sky day greeted the 10 hikers who hiked among wildflowers from Petersburg Pass to the Snow Hole to see quite a lot of snow still remaining. We lunched at its opening but as we were a bit below the ridge, bugs began to get the best of us and we quickly returned to the TCT. At the intersection of the Birch Brook Trail (Williams Outing Club) we descended through WC land to the Hopkins Forest, finding the woods lush with green and plants and green leaves. We spotted the research canopy thanks to Martha's knowledge of where it is, read the trailside natural history posting and returned to spotted cars at the entrance.

  Co-leader: Sharon Bonk, Bob Armao  Participants: Martha Waldman, Dale Blanchet, Kathyrn Martin, Dave Cedar, Christine Boucher, John Susko, Deb Spicer, Mike Boucher




May 15 - Trail Work at the Holt Preserve
In our continuing partnership with the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy this member helped to relocate one of the trails at this preserve so that it now zig zags down a steep incline rather than going straight down.

  Leader: John Tifft




May 10 - Invasive Plant Training Session
One of our members attended this training session presented in part by the Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management. Its purpose was two fold. One was to acquaint the participants with some of the identifying aspects of invasive plants, both on land and in water, and then to help us input our findings into the Imapinvasive data base.

  Participants: John Tifft




May 2 - Hadley Mountain Hike
Seven of us tackled Hadley Mountain. We all made it to the top, in very warm weather -- 80's. The trail was in good shape, with no ice or snow, but a bit wet in places. Since it was the first hard hike of the season, some of us were out of shape and it was hard to climb up 1500 feet, but we made it and had beautiful views of Sacandaga Lake..

  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Dee Portzer, Ellen Kozlowski, Martha Waldman, Ken Goldfarb, Shari Whitiing

The gang at the top of Hadley





May 1 - Trail Work on the Tech Park Trail
We were invited to help out the Rensselaer Land Trust in their beginning stage of building two bridges on the Tech Park Trail. Mike Boucher was particularly helpful in getting the ATV, used to transport lumber, out of numerous spots where it got stuck. The bridges were eventually completed.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Mike Boucher




May 1 - Trail Work at Winn Preserve
One of our members attended an event sponsored by the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy. They were rehabbing an old building located on the property.

  Leader: Mary O'Connell




April 29 - Trail Work on the Taconic Crest Trail
On a particularly cold, wet and generally miserable weather day, the three of us worked on surveying and clearing our section of the Taconic Crest Trail in anticipation of the End to End Challenge Run. A large blow down was noted, waterbars were cleared, and quite a few manageable two to three inch tree limbs were cleared from the trail

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski, Mike Boucher




April 28 - Citizen Science: Invasive Plant Identification and Data Entry Workshop
With the cooperation of the Rensselaer Land Trust, the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance, and the Mohawk Hudson PRISM a workshop was presented at the Albert Community Forrest. Three invasive plant species were shown. Also shown was the how to of entering any data which you happen run across into the Imapinvasive data base. Unfortunately, I was the only participant from our chapter in attendance.

  Leader: John Tifft




April 26 - Frog Watch at Pine Bush Preserve
An orientation to the different frog sounds was presented in the late evening at the Pine Bush Preserve. One of our members attended.

  Leader: David Esmond




April 22 - Earth Day Cleanup in Coeymans
In assistance to the Mohawk Land Conservancy, the four of us helped them to clear as yet to be fully acquired land in Coeymans. MHLC provided everything we needed including a wonderful assortment of breakfast items, buckets, wheelbarrow, and a very large dumpster. The dumpster became completely full by noon time. The amount of junk was astonishing.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Deborah Richards, Mary O'Connell, Janet Angelis






April 18 - Harrier Hill to Greenport Conservation Center Hike
With snowflakes in the air we left the parking lot. With leaden skies, 9 mid week hikers began our through hike looking at the Cakskills from the Harrier Hill pavilion (Scenic Hudson), focusing on snow and the profile of the sleeping man. We encounter wet and muddy trails with two signs of spring (scarlet cup mushrooms) and violets both identified by Dale. Dale also identified a harrier hawk near HH. Audrey gave us and update on CLC and city of Hudson trail extension plans.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Will Crowther, Nancy Crowther, Anne Finch, Dale Blanchet, Audrey Wyman, Bob Armao, Sue Ann Karker, Ellen Koizlowski

The Group at Greenport





April 14 - Hike at Thacher Park
Following his talk about the Long Path, Ken Posner led us on a short easy hike along the escarpment of Thacher Park, and then circled back. What was very intriquing about the hike was that Ken walked the entire length in his bare feet! The day was cold and threatening to rain, but no matter, it was good to get out!

  Leader: Kenneth Posner  Participants: John Tifft, Mary O'Connell, Ellen Kozlowski, Brad Nohr, Betty Nash




April 14 - Cleanup at Tomhannock Resevoir
Two members of our chapter joined with the Rensselaer Land Trust in their annual cleanup of the shoreline of the Tomhannock Resevoir.

  Leader: John Tifft  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski




April 11 - Catskill 100 Highest: Narrow Notch Mtn
After climbing the state forest road to col and then tote roads reaching Narrow Notch's ridge line, its southeastern knob at 3160', and lunching, we as a group much enjoyed tired, a quick snow sliding descent in near last winter snows back to Relay Road, with no convincing to continue by me, enjoying nature's artistry in snow print and open wood views to white flaked, rolling hills along our tramp (4 miles / 5 hours).

  Leader: Jean André Laverdure  Co-leader: John Tifft  Participants: Ellen Kozlowski, Nancy Crowther, Will Crowther

Open woods descent...





April 7 - Invasive Species Workshop
This workshop was held at Staalesen Verheyden Preserve. There the participants were treated to a training invasive species identification session by Spencer Barrett who is the Terrestial Invasive Species Coordinator for the Capital Mohawk PRISM. I was the only participant from our chapter. While pointing out what to look for when looking for bittersweet, buckthorn, fragmonti, etc., we did some pruning of the trees infected with bittersweet.

  Leader: John Tifft




March 9 - Moreau State Park Snowshoe
At first there were eight, but by the date of the event, there were 4 of us who treked about 5 miles along the lake, up Mud Pond to Western Ridge to Turkey Path and down Red Oak Trail to the winter cabin and its welcoming and warming fire. The day was sunny and the snow hardpacked. We brought snowshoes and microspikes, but it was each hiker's choice of footgear as it all worked, including bare boots.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Bob Armao, Kathleen Helfrich, Katie Henrickson

Warming Cabin, Moreau State Park





February 28 - Burbank and Brothers Trails Lenox MA
We had an early spring hike on a midwinter's day! Brooks were rushing down hill, the sun was shining, and the temperature was mild. We followed the hike with a stop at the Depot for special coffees and ice creams.


  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Mike Boucher, Dave Cedar, Bob Armao, Nancy Crowther, Will Crowther




February 23 - Indian Meadows, Glenville Town Park.
Two hikers at 8:30AM, John and I met at Andersen Park to explore Glenville’s trail system. We there decided to wear micro-spikes. After hiking the Red Trail to circle Forest Hill, we returned north to cross the new wetland boardwalk meeting skiers along the way, to our crossing an almost washed over footbridge into Indian Meadows Park. Now following the Perimeter (Yellow) Trail, we walked the park’s eastern edge and heights. Once along the park’s northern edge, we went west to a short trail going further north to the YMCA’s playground. We backtracked from there to John’s spotted car at the Park’s playground in time for the start of a drizzle (3.60 miles / 2:12 hours). After a pleasant winter day’s walk in fresh thin snow, I returned in early March to ski new snow, pleased to find the Perimeter’s double tracks groomed for my skiing.

  Co-leader: Jean André Laverdure, John Tifft




February 14 - Anchor Diamond park snowshoe hike
The picture shows a photo-shopped image by Anne Finch, with a picture of the old Hawkwood Mansion which is now in ruins. What we saw in the park was an old stone fireplace left from the mansion, and some wells. This trip was intended to be a ski/snowshoe trip, but the snow was icy, so Will is the only one who skiied. The rest of us were in snowshoes or boots with traction devices. We had a good time on the nice trails.

  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Anne Finch, Dee Portzer, Martha Waldman, Ellen Kozlowski, Charlie Beech

The gang in front of a historical picture of Hawkwood Mansion





January 31 - Grafton State Park Hike
Light, fluffy snow greeted us in upland of Grafton State Park. There was insufficient snow for snowshoes but enough to hide all the ice on the trails as we hiked with microspikes. Equipment issues slowed the group at the beginng so that we completed about a third of the 5+ miles by lunch time. The circuit of Long Pond awaited and we did it in good time under continually sunny skies.

  Leader: Sharon Bonk  Participants: Bob Armao, Ellen Kozlowski, Katie Henrickson, Esther Sosman, Dave Edmonds, Dsle Blanchet, George Nagy




January 19 - East Mountain to Shays Rebellion on the AT
A group of four Chapter members, we climbed to an East Mtn outlook wearing micro-spikes to expansive views across our valley destination below. Backtracking west, most of us butt-slid parts of our descent from the rocky, snow covered ledges back across June Mtn, woodpecker here drumming, to the Housatonic River. Appalachian Trail was now a flooded ice covered path, down beneath five inches of powdery snow with the ice at times breaking beneath us. Beyond US 7, we climbed Limekiln Cobble to reach the Shay's Rebellion Monument (after 6 miles and 800 feet of gain).

  Leader: Jean Laverdure  Participants: John Tifft, Kathleen Helfrich, Mike Boucher




January 17 - Ski/snowshoe at Schenectady County Forest
Eight brave people set out under snowy conditions to Schenectady County Forest. Three were on skis and the remaining 5 on snowshoes. We skied the whole loop, including the second “Boy Scout Trail” loop. Most of the two trails were flat but there were a couple of short hills where the trail changed level. The snowshoers went right up, and the skiers practiced their herringboning skills. Everything was powder covered and it was very pretty. The snow was excellent. We then went to the leaders’ house for hot soup, bread and cookies.


  Leader: Will Crowther  Co-leader: Nancy Crowther  Participants: Janet Angelis, Deb Richards, Ellen Kozlowski, Kendra Pratt, Dee Portzer, Anne Finch

The whole gang in the snow






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