Tuesday August 2
Green Lakes State Park, Fayetteville
Hike report by Steve S.
Eleven hikers and one dog met at Green Lakes State Park for a hike and meander around the lakes. We hiked past beautiful and unique meromictic Green Lake and Round Lake and then up to the golf course restaurant and club house, with a charming view over Green Lake. We availed ourselves of the chairs provided by the restaurant and rested and snacked. Then back down to the lakes and back to the cars via the beach. In all, we hiked 5 ¼ miles over three hours at our leisurely sightseeing pace.
Photos by Steve S.
Photos by Randy O.
Photos by Norm
Wednesday, August 3
Hammond Hill, Dryden
Eleven hikers met in the parking lot on Hammond Hill Rd. for a hike of the trail system in the state forest. An additional hiker and three dogs met the group during the hike.
We weren’t alone on the trails this day; several bicyclists and runners were using the trail system. The Cayuga Trails Club also had hikers on Hammond Hill, checking out their hike route there for later in the week.
Trail conditions were generally favorable, with dry footpaths, lots of sunshine, and some much-appreciated breezes.
I wanted to try a different route from the ones we’ve most often done when starting from the parking lot on Hammond Hill Rd., and I ended up combining fragments of several other hikes and running the route in the reverse direction of the one we usually take for these hikes.
From the parking lot, we hiked to the blue-blazed trails, then took the Rabbit Run snowmobile trail downhill to the seasonal part of Canaan Rd. We continued north over a variety of yellow-blazed trails until we reached Time Square.
The group crossed the seasonal portion of Star Stanton Hill Rd., doing a loop on the north side of that road that returned us to Star Stanton Hill Rd. From there we walked the yellow-blazed trails back to the parking lot.
As with some of our more recent Hammond Hill hikes, this one ran over our normal two-hour hike time. I’m pretty sure that I can make the hike shorter by choosing some alternative routes from the one we took this day.
Saturday August 6
Woodard Road east into upper Robert Treman SP and Summer Cookout
Hike report by Jim
On a hot humid Saturday morning, 16 hikers set out on the FLT from Woodard Rd. As we crossed the wooden bridge over Fish Kill creek, it was nice to see that the water volume had increased, thanks to recent rains. We walked in the shade of the trees lining the seasonal Butternut Creek Rd., finally reaching the graveled road surface of Van Ostrand Rd.
We passed through the more recently developed neighborhood and reached Thomas Rd., turning onto that road and hiking along the more exposed section of our hike.
Soon we reached the other end of Butternut Creek Rd. and walked along it to where the FLT turns back into the woods. The trail in this section follows the edge of a cliff or two, and while the foliage blocked any good views, it’s a pleasant section of trail.
Soon the FLT turns onto the park access road portion of Thomas Rd., which finally ends at the Rim Trail. We walked the Rim Trail to the Lucifer Falls overlook. After a picture or two, I changed our normal hike route by leading the group down the stone stairs to the flatlands below.
After stopping to check out Lucifer Falls from ground level, we crossed the wooden bridge and climbed back to Upper Treman via the Gorge Trail stairs. My fear for this section of the hike was that we would be much more exposed on the stone steps, but the cliffs along the stairs offered enough shade along much of the trail that we were able to shelter from the direct sunlight for much of the walk back to the Upper Treman parking area.
We passed the Old Mill and turned onto the CCC camp trail, which in turn led back to the FLT and our cars, where we arrived bwith about 10 minutes to spare. Most of us jumped into our cars and drove to Roger’s house for the summer picnic.
Over the course of the afternoon we enjoyed the company of approximately 50 hikers at the cookout, although many had come and gone by the time Roger broke out the clams.
Thanks to the many hikers who donated their time toward the prep work that made the picnic possible, and thanks to all who contributed money toward Nancy H.’s operating expenses of the websites. Thanks especially to Roger for opening his home to the group once again.
On another note, we had one hiker who got lost en route to Woodard Rd due to relying on Google maps and ended up missing the hike entirely. I would like to once again say that in the more rural parts of the county Google maps is not entirely reliable, and that if anyone has any questions about the meeting location to contact me ahead of the hike day for directions. It’s a good idea to download a map of the area so you can use Google Maps even when you’re offline. For a video tutorial on how to download offline maps in Google Maps, click here.
Photos by Randy O.
Sunday August 7
Hike report by Jim
Seventeen hikers met on Townline Rd. in the towns of Ithaca and Danby for a hike of the Lick Brook/ Sweedler Nature Preserve.
The group started off down the hill from our cars and soon turned onto the white-blazed FLT. We made our way down the slope, traversing a dry streambed and along the narrow ridgeline with a steep drop-off on either side.
Soon we found ourselves on the flatlands, inching our way through the overgrown trail until we reached the waterfalls. We stopped there for a few minutes and then returned to the trail, continuing on the FLT toward Route 13.
There were a few new members of the group on the hike today and it was my intent to help them piece together this section of the trail in their minds; when I first joined the group I sometimes had difficulty “seeing” the various sections of the trails we were hiking in the context of a larger overview of the trail system. I called this “ connecting the dots”; Leigh Ann referred to it today as “snapping together the various Lego pieces.”
We left the Lick Brook property and crossed the Tapan Mitra Preserve and the railroad bridge. Upon reaching the parking area near Shady Corners that we use for hikes of Lower Treman, we discussed the “emerald necklace” of preserve and state park properties in the area linked by the FLT. Then we turned around and retraced our steps.
When we got back to the falls area, Casey took the lead on the blue-blazed path up the hill. At Townline Rd., hikers crossed the road and did a short loop through the Thayer Preserve.
Several Ithaca Hikers arrived in the parking area for solo hikes just as we were ending our two hour hike, and several of us stayed a while to catch up on small talk with the new arrivals.
For those trying for their FLT60 patch, today’s FLT mileage was 2 FLT miles.