Sunday, January 24, 2016

Stony Brook Post Snowstorm

Harriman State Park
Rockland Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Long Path: Pine Meadow Trail: Red blaze
Stony Brook Trail: Orange blaze
Pine Meadow Connector Trail: Unblazed

Total Time: 1:50 Hours
Estimated Distance: 2.2 Miles
Level of Difficulty: Very difficult due to conditions
Level of Recommendation: Highly recommended for a snow hike

Points of Interest: Scenic area
Cons: Wasn't able to make it to the view

Hiking Partners:
David Kunkel
Shimmy Rosenberg
Morty Rosenberg

Map of the Route.
Harriman/Bear Mountain State Parks Southern Map

Reeves Brook Crossing

Pine Meadow Trail Near Beginning

Shimmy in his Winter Garb

Hiking Along the Trail

Fallen Tree Across the Stony Brook

David Kunkel

Natural Hole in the Snow

Morty at the Gas Line

Gas Line

Along the Route, on the Stony Brook Trail

Stony Brook Trail

Evergreen Mountain Laurels along the Pine Meadow Trail

Serene Scene along the Pine Meadow Trail on our Return

We experienced a very large snowstorm over the weekend, with a total snowfall of 1.5 to 2 feet. It had snowed all day Saturday, and had stopped late Saturday night. Sunday morning was bright and sunny (though very cold), and the streets were finally drivable. I figured it would be difficult to go on most hikes in the area without snowshoes, as blazing a new path in snow, especially when its very deep, is very difficult. I figured the best place to go in the area was along the Pine Meadow area at the Reeves Brook parking area near Sloatsburg, as its the most well-travelled area in Harriman State Park.

However, I was wrong in that there were very few people area. I have never seen this busy trail so empty. There was a small group that had gone out on the trail before us, so we weren't trailblazing the path; however the conditions were still difficult. So much snow that right at the beginning of the hike, Shimmy slipped and injured his knee. He decided to go back to the car and wait for us while he remained incapacitated.

The rest of us went along the Pine Meadow Trail to the Stony Brook Trail, and after it meets up with the Kakiat Trail there is a bridge crossing the brook towards the Cascade of Slid. I had planned on crossing the bridge up the Kakiat Trail. However, nobody had been this far up before preceding the storm, so had we gone further on the Kakiat Trail we would have been making our own fresh trail on this difficult part of the hike. Due to the difficulty, we opted to bail out early and instead take the Pine Meadow Connector Trail which cimbs up the side of the steep vally to the connect to the Pine Meadow Trail. Once we hit the Pine Meadow Trail, we took that back along the way to our car.

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