Sunday, April 8, 2018

Apshawa Preserve and Butler Reservoir

West Milford, near Butler
Passaic Co,
New Jersey

Hiking Trails:
Blue Trail: Blue blaze
White Trail: White blaze
Red Trail: Red blaze
Green Trail: Green blaze

Total Time: 1:30 hour
Estimated Distance: 2.7 Miles

Pros: Interesting area
Cons: None

Hiking Partner:
Joseph Friedman

I had never been to this area before, which features nice tranquil forest, scenic lakes, and nice streams. Most of the area of the hike is surrounded by a fence to keep the deer out and enable more natural plant growth. I parked in the preserve parking lot, and took the Blue Trail to the White Trail, which slowly climbs up to a nice view of the Butler Reservoir. Upon the the descent, the trail meets up with the Red and Green Trails at the dam, and then crosses over a metal bridge across the Apshawa Brook, onto a peninsula jutting into the Reservoir. I then turned around and went back along the Blue Trail back to the parking area.

Map of the Route

Warning About Bears at the Gate to the Preserve to Keep the Bears Out

Koplen Pond from the Purple Trail

Another View of the Small Pond

Me at Koplen Pond

Me Posing for the Picture 
Rocky Promenade at Koplen Pond

Interesting Bridge Skirting a Log at the Outlet of the Pond

High Crest Lake

Another View of High Crest Lake

Koplen Pond Again

Monday, April 2, 2018

Kakiat April Snowstorm

Kakiat County Park,
Rockland Co.,
New York

Hiking Trail:
Mountain Trail: Orange blaze
Kakiat Trail: White blaze
Old Mill Trail: Blue blaze

Total Time: 1:20 hour
Estimated Distance: 1.8 Miles

Pros: Very scenic in fresh snow, good view
Cons: None

Hiking Partner:
Shimmy Rosenberg

March was exceptionally cold, and winter seems to have lingered along into April. It has been a very chilly start to spring, and I and everyone was quite surprised to have woken up to 6 inches snow.  I have never seen this much snow in April. Although this snow was predicted, nobody took the forecasters seriously. Anyways, this was a good oppurtunity for a quick hike up Kakiat, to the view.

We parked at the Kakiat parking area, and took the Mountain Trail up to the first view. We took a bunch of pictures, and then bushwacked north to the Kakiat Trail, which we took down the mountain, to the Old Mill Trail. We took the Old Mill Trail around, back to the parking area.

Map of the Route

Shimmy at the Beginning of the Hike

Me at the Field at the Bottom of the Mountain

Mahwah River in the Snow

Kakiat Gazebo and Field

Shimmy at the Start of the Mountain Trail

Me on the Mountain Trail with my Snowshoes

Gas Pipeline

Me on a Fallen Tree

Ascending the Mountain on the Mountain Trail

Approaching the Kakiat Lower Overlook

Kakiat Overlook

Snow on the Mountain

View Facing East

Everything is Snow Covered

AMe at the Kakiat Overlook

Me and Shimmy at the Kakiat Overlook

Me and Shimmy Selfiie

View Facing South

Shhimmy at the Overlook

Me Again

Panorama View

Budding Trees in the Snow

Close up of the Budding Trees

View Facing East/Northeast

Bridge at the End of the Old Mill Trail

On the Small Bridge at the End of the Old Mill Trail

Mahwah River

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Popolopen Late Winter Hike

Bear Mountain State Park,
Orange Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Timp Torne Trail: Blue blaze

Total Time: 0:55 hour
Estimated Distance: 1.1 Miles

Pros: Great climb and excellent views
Cons: Hike is short

Hiking Partner:
Rayzi Friedman

Popolopen is one of my favorite hikes in Harriman/Bear Mountain. Its a great scramble over large rocks, with an excellent 360 degree view at the summit of a very scenic area. However, it is a very short hike, forming a quick loop. I would love to see the trail expanded north to the newly added park area north and northwest of the trail. Since we were short on time, this was a good choice for a short and quick yet intense hike.

This hike was in late March. March has been well-below average, with several snowstorms and lingering snow. Although much of the snow from the large storm had already melted, there was still plenty of snow in the areas on the north-facing slopes that had less exposure to the sun.

We parked at the trailhead for Popolopen Torne, and walked along the road a short distance to the western side of the loop, which features a better and more direct climb up to the summit. We took the Timp-Torne trail up to the relatively low but expansive summit, and then continued around the loop and back down the mountain to the trailhead by the road where our car was parked.

Map of the Route

Wood Face Carvings at the Trail Parking Lot

Another Face Carving with the Trail Markers

Rayzi Climbing the Rock Scramble

Navigating a Large Rock Face

The First View, Facing West

Pine Tree on a Large Rock Face

Snow-Covered Northern Flank of Bear Mountain

Trail Going on Some Interesting Rocks

Me at the First View

View Facing the Palisades Parkway

More Dwarf Pines

Facing Southeast Towards Haverstraw Bay

The Hudson River, Anthony's Nose, and Bear Mountain Bridge

Bear Mountain across the Valley

View Towards the Harriman Hills

Me at the Summit

Facing Northeast

Facing Southeast

Scene at the Summit

Zoomed in to the Summit Mound

From the Summit, Facing North

The Summit Facing South

Facing West

Starting to Descend from the Summit

Rayzi, Facing North

Me, Facing North

Snow on the Descent

Last View