Report to Hikers May 6-May 12

Wednesday, May 8

FLT from Schuyler County Veterans Memorial Park, Alpine

Hike report by Jim

Twenty hikers and two dogs met in the parking lot of the Schuyler County Veterans Park for an out-and-back hike of the FLT in the area. This is hike # 66 on our list of regular hike locations:

I wasn’t sure how the day would turn out for the hikers, as it had rained and thundered during the night, but as I drove towards the trailhead I found that it was a beautiful day. The sun was out, the skies were clear, and the group arrived ready to hike.

Heading south from the Vets Park, the FLT passes through some private property with small ponds, a dry streambed and a well-maintained treadway before reaching county route 6. Crossing that road and making a quick turn onto Gulf Rd, the FLT soon turns into the woods and follows Cayuta Creek through Hendershot Gulf. The stream in this area is initially fairly slow moving and can almost appear stagnant during the dry summer months. As the trail follows the stream south, the water slowly picks up speed until it is flowing quite well. The FLT itself is sometimes fairly near the creek, and occasionally above it a good distance as the ground rises and falls.

The air was clear during the hike, and the FLT as it followed the creek was a visually pleasing mix of shadow and light. There was an abundance of newly flowering and blooming plants and trees along our route. Other than one or two spots where small streams cross the footpath there was no mud at all on todays hike

The fastest hikers made it beyond the location of the former wooden bridge that collapsed and was removed last year, with some hikers climbing the hill towards the Van Lone Loop. Upon turning around the group slowly reacquired the slower hikers as it returned the way the hikers had come on the outbound leg of the hike.

Post-hike some members of the group pre-hiked another location in the area for an upcoming hike, while others drove to Watkins Glen for an enjoyable lunch in the village.

Photo by Jim

View Leigh Ann’s photo album.

Photos by Greg

Saturday, May 11

Foundation of Light, Ithaca

Hike report by Jim

Forty-three hikers and one dog met at the Foundation of Light on Turkey Hill Rd in the Town of Dryden for a remembrance hike and celebration of life meal afterwards for Ithaca Hiker Linda V. This event was planned and led by Mary Jo.

The hike was an out-and back hike from the Foundation of Light down Turkey Hill Rd to Stevenson Rd, where the group picked up the Dryden Rail Trail and walked that until it was time to turn around. This hike is not on our list of regular hike locations.

The day turned out to be sunny and warm, despite a cool early morning. There was a good amount of cloud cover that resulted in the hills around us to be either half-sunlit or in the shadow of clouds as they moved across the sky.

Most of the group stayed for the dish-to-pass, and another thirty persons or so who weren’t able to join the hike arrived for the meal.

Thanks to everyone who planned or participated in todays events!

Photo by Jim
Photos by Joanna Hryniewicz

Sunday, May 12

FLT out-and-back from Diane’s Crossing, Danby SF

Hike report by Greg

Spring has sprung! Thirteen hikers and one dog walked out and back on a portion of the FLT. Weather conditions were ideal. With the forest canopy rapidly greening, a smattering of flowers blooming, but for a few spills on slippery leaves the hike was very pleasant. While most returned within 2 hours a few who ‘stopped to smell the roses’ took slightly longer.

Photo by Jim
Photos by Greg
Full Abbott Loop from Diane’s Crossing, Danby SF

Hike report by Casey

Six of us started the longer version of this hike an hour early because I had mistakenly remembered that we did this hike last time in 2 hours and 55 minutes. Well this is the entire Abbott’s Loop. I was only off by an hour. My original plan was to be able to meet up with the hikers who were doing the shorter version and starting at the regular time at 9:40. The idea was that we would likely run into them somewhere around their one hour turnaround time which may or may not have been at the Pinnacles. And that might have worked if our entire hike had actually taken less than 3 hours. This time we managed the 8.4 mile loop with around 1700 feet of elevation change in 3 hours, 50 minutes. Needless to say, by the time we staggered back to our cars, everyone else was long gone.

Life is full of tradeoffs. The last time we did this hike it was hot, sticky, and quite buggy. Not today. No rain, no heat, and no bugs. Did I mention tradeoffs? Not surprisingly for this time of year, it was plenty muddy and there were lots of stream crossing where the usual stepping stones had apparently been washed away. This is not an easy hike in that there is very little flat. Just lots of real ups and downs and many water crossings. But by the time you get back to the cars you have a great feeling of accomplishment.

Photos by Leigh Ann

View Leigh Ann’s photo album.