Report to Hikers: week of March 6-March 12


Hello Hikers!


Wed March 8

Shindagin Hollow SF, bike trails in the northeast section

An unusually nice morning for early March  —  no signs of spring yet, of course, but it was mild and the air smelled very fresh from the rain overnight and there was water everywhere

The hikers were all in a lively mood and everyone was talking away brightly  —  it was the morning of the world without women march and one word was on everyone’s lips:


This is a loop hike that includes a number of extremely poorly marked biking trails  —  the only way we can finish in two hours is if someone can remember the correct way to proceed at every unmarked crossroads  —  so far, Tiger’s the only one who can remember the way  —  she had a few minutes of confusion this time caused by downed trees and huge puddles obscuring the way, but she figured it out in the end and we got back to the cars in almost precisely two hours

Official head count:  19H, four D

You can see Jack V’s photos here


Saturday March 11

Forest road walk with a lesson in using a compass, Curtis Road and Hill Road, Danby SF

We shaped up right at the top of a fairly high hill and the atmospherics when we got out of the car were awful  —  biting raw wind, snowing and 12 degrees ….

…. but, as always when we hike in nasty weather, it was fun to see everyone, and we all perked up as soon as we got moving

The main group set off down Hill Road, planning to do some elementary work on navigating in the woods with a compass.  Four of us decided to just do a straight road walk south on Curtis Road  —  we made it down to the intersection with Fischer Settlement Road

Most of Curtis was underlain with a sheet of ice  —  I guess this is what happens when you have a big thaw and then a sharp freeze and some snow  —  I broke through the ice at one point into a big puddle  —  got my foot a little damp  —  but, thanks to good socks, not a problem


Report on the main group, who bushwhacked from Hill Road to Curtis Road using a compass, from Scott:

On Saturday, a group of the hikers did a bushwhack with compasses from Hill road east through a beautiful mixed forest and mildly uneven terrain to Curtis road.    After about 1/2 hour all Bushwhackers emerged onto Curtis in reasonably close proximity and, if we counted correctly, none were left behind and lost.     On Curtis road the Bushwhackers met up with the other hikers for a lovely walk back to the cars.    The bushwhacking event appeared to be a success and we will be planning others in the future.


We all met up back on Curtis Road near where we started:

This stretch takes us through a fantastic setting for a little while

Official head count:  16H, three D

Jack V walked with the bushwhack-and-compass group  —  you can see his photos here


Sunday March 12

Kennedy SF, Virgil

A few degrees colder than our meet-up the day before but not so windy, so the initial prospect of stepping out of the warm cars wasn’t so unappealing

This trail has a number of stream crossings  —  they may look small in the photos but the ice on top wasn’t solid and it wasn’t always obvious how to get across  —  several hikers broke through and got a bit wet

Lovely morning  —  pale sun for part of the time, a little snow flurries  —  on the last leg of the drive back into town, from NYSEG on, we drove through frozen fog

The box that protects the trail registry book was frozen shut and a couple of our guys had to work strenuously together to get it open  —  Tiger was concerned they might pull it off the tree

Owego Hill Road  —  underlain with ice and barely frozen-over puddles in spots

This walk doesn’t have any major ups and downs but it has many tricky small ones and you really need to keep your eye on the trail all the time  —  in order to finish the loop in two hours we need to keep up a brisk pace  —  several hikers complained we went so fast they didn’t have enough time to look around at the beautiful scenery

Official head count:  16H, four D