Monday, September 26, 2011

Rockhouse Mountain
and Lake Welch

Harriman State Park,
Rockland County,
New York

Took unmarked trails and bushwacks

Total Time: 0:20 hr
Estimated Distance: 0.6 Miles
Level of Difficulty: Difficult but very short
Level of Recommendation: Recommended
Points Of Interest: Highest Point in Rockland County, Nice View

Google Maps of Parking:

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My time has been very short this time of the year and I lacked the time to take lengthy hikes. So I will post several shorter hikes for the next several weeks. Before hiking up Rockhouse Mountain I stopped at Lake Welch right after the Causeway on Route 106 for views of the Lake. The trees have just slightly started changing color and this could officially count as the first fall foliage hike.

Rockhouse Mountain is officially the highest point in Rockland County at 1,283 feet tall. There is no trail going up this mountain. There is somewhat of an overgrown path, but the hike is pretty much a bushwack. I had hiked this area for the first time in early April of this year. I decided to explore a bit more with the green on the trees, and also needed a very short hike, which this afforded. Although I didn't hit the actual summit, which is further east/northeast, I came close and made the view.

I parked on Lake Kanawauke Rd (County Route 106) after it winds along the side of Rockhouse Mountain on a side pull-off near the Long Path trail, and climbed the mountain on its western flank, which is full of rocky boulders. Climbed to the view and summit, went a little more along the ridge, and then bushwacked down the steep slope back to the road slightly before the bend and then hiked back along the side of the road.

Map of the Route
Lake Welch from the Causeway. Facing Southwest.
Lake Welch from the Causeway. Facing Northeast.
Lake Welch from the Causeway. Facing Southwest.
Talus, Rocks. and Boulders Ascending Rockhouse Mountain
View From Atop Rockhouse. Facing Southwest.

View From Atop Rockhouse. Facing Southwest towards the Swamp.
Lake Kanawauke Rd (Route 106) with early fall foliage.
Facing Lake Welch Parkway overpass in the Green Swamp.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Red Cross Trail

Harriman State Park,
Orange County
(and a small bit of Rockland County)
New York


Arden Surebridge (ASB) Trail: Red Triange Blaze
Red Cross Trail: Red Blaze
Long Path: Green Blaze

Total Time:
2:00 hr
Estimated Distance: 2.5 Miles
Level of Difficulty: Moderate
Level of Recommendation: Highly Recommended
Points Of Interest: Tranquil forest and lake scenery with good views

Google Maps of Parking:

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This was a stunning September day. The parking lot by the lakes often fills up rather quickly on nice weekends, so its important to get here early. I had to scramble around to find a parking spot. I started at the parking area at Lake Skanatati off of Seven Lakes Drive. I went up the ASB Trail to the view atop Pine Swamp Mountain to the famous view, and from there took the Red Cross Trail down, across Seven Lakes Drive, and onto the shore of Lake Askoti.

This part of the Lake is very serene with boulder jagging into the crystal clear water. From there continued up the trail as it climbs the eastern part of Hasenclever Mountain. There is a nice view here not shown on the Trail Conference Map overlooking Hogencamp Mountain. Continued along to intersection with the unmarked trail that passes along from Lake Askoti. From there I went back towards the shore of Lake Askoti.

Map of the Route.
I pulled this from an older post in 2009.

View from the Pine Swamp Mnt View.
Facing south facing Lake Skanatati and Lake Kanawauke

Same view, but a bit more west and zoomed.

Rock Jutting into Lake Askoti.

View of Hogencamp Mnt.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Indian Rock

Sam's Point Preserve
Shawangunk Mountains,
Ulster County,
New York


Loop Road
High Point Carriageway
Indian Rock Trail: Yellow blaze

Total Time: 2:30 hr
Estimated Distance: 5 Miles
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Level of Recommendation: Recommended
Points Of Interest: Excellent Views and Interesting Rock formations

Google Maps of Parking:

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 Indian Rock is an interesting rock formation within the Sam's Point Preserve. The entire area of the northern Shawangunk mountains is full of interesting rock formations and crevices, with a very unique geology. The hike to Indian Rock is fairly easy, and for the most park goes on former old roads so the paths are easy. I parked at the Sam's Point Preserve Parking area (parking here costs $10), and took the western side of the Loop Road up towards Lake Martanza. This old road is no longer accessible to vehicles, and has many dilapidated berry-picker huts on the side of the road. At Lake Martanza there are many large communications towers, which give this hike an eerie feeling, especially on a cloudy day. Continued at the High Point Carriageway for about half a mile until the Indian Rock Trail. The entire first part of the Indian Rock Trail is along boardwalk planks as it traverses above a wetlands bog. The Indian Rock Trail is about half a mile, and once I got the Indian Rock climbed through it and scrambled around. The trail ends here at the rock, so I turned around and followed my steps back to the Loop Road, and then took the eastern part of the Loop Road along Lake Martanza. I veered off on a small bushwack along the shore of Lake Martanza at a sandy area, which I suspect was once a beach where swimming once took place. From there continued along to Sam's Point. Continued from there on the road back to the parking area.

Map of the Route

Boardwalk Planks Along the Marshy Part of the Indian Rock Trail

View on the Approach Towards Indian Rock

Indian Rock

Crevice Underneath Indian Rock

Inside the Crevice in Indian Rock

Continuing Inside the Crevice in Indian Rock

Another View of Indian Rock

Lake Martanza

Signpost Along the Loop Road by the Long Path

View from Sam's Point.
Looking east at some onlookers at the cliff wall.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

West Mountain

Harriman/Bear Mountain State Parks
Rockland and Orange Counties,
New York

Anthony Wayne Trail: White Blaze
Fawn Trail: Red Blaze
Timp-Torne Trail: Blue Blaze
Ramapo Dunderberg Trail: Red Blaze
Appalachian Trail: White Blaze
Beechy Bottom Road

Total Time: 2:40 hr
Estimated Distance: 4.4 Miles
Level of Difficulty: Difficult
Level of Recommendation: Highly recommended
Points Of Interest: Good rock scrambles and excellent views

Google Maps of Parking:

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West Mountain is one of my favorites in Harriman. It affords a good climb with some scrambling, with amazing views. This was a hazy, hot and humid September day. We parked in the northernmost section of the Anthony Wayne Rec Area, and took the Anthony Wayne Trail for a short distance, to the Fawn Trail up the hill for a short distance, and then went south on the Timp-Torne Trail. This trail climbs to the top of the mountain with rocky ridges and slopes. The Timp-Torne Trail joins up with the Applachian Trail for some short time, and then splits off near the main summit. After that started the descent on the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail past the Fire Escape and the Cat's Elbow, and then down all the way to Beechy Bottom Road. Took the Beechy Bottom Road down back to Anthony Wayne.

Map of the Route

Atop West Mountain.
Looking West Towards Black Mountain.

View from the Top. Facing Northwest Towards
the Route 6 Traffic Circle.

Me at the same view.

Facing Northeast Towards Bear Mountain,
Anthony's Nose, and the Hudson River.

View From the Cat's Elbow. Facing South.
It's too Hazy to See Down to Haverstraw and Hi-Tor.

View from Cat's Elbow Facing South Towards Pyngyp Mountain

Timber Rattlesnake We Encountered on the Beechy Bottom Road.