The NYSkiBlog Indy Tour

This season NYSkiBlog is stepping up our support of the independent ski areas that we feel are vital to the sport. As part of this effort, we’re embarking on a venture with Indy Pass, a multi-mountain pass that gives the holder privileges to ski 2 days at 44 independent ski areas across North America. More on that in a moment, but first, a bit of backstory.


In 1988, at age 30, I learned to cross country ski in the southern Adirondacks. In 1997, I bought land in the area and would camp to keep the cost of skiing down. In 2002, I married Zelda, and in 2006, our lives changed bigtime when we had a baby. Backcountry skiing became impractical, but my jones to slide on snow remained strong.

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Plattekill Tree Skiing Work Day 2019

Plattekill Mountain and NYSkiBlog are stoked to present the ninth annual Plattekill Tree Skiing Work Day at the ski area in Roxbury NY on Saturday October 26th, 2019. Sunday the 27th is our raindate.

Plattekill fall aerial photo

As is our tradition, we’re recruiting a motivated, smiling crew of lopper wielding powder hounds to continue our maintenance of some of the Catskills’ best tree skiing.

Our longterm goal is to clear as much terrain as possible under the legendary double chair. As regulars know, Plattekill is committed to helping skiers pursue their passion and find great lines all over the mountain.

free tree lines

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Poaching the Smiley Road

“Four mile post. Entering the lost community of the huckleberry pickers. You are not forgotten.”

Someone had carved this inscription into a board and nailed it to a tree at mile four, coming from Ellenville, on the Smiley carriage road.

Smiley Road
Along the Smiley Road

Earlier this month, I’d run a loop in Sam’s Point Preserve, partly inspired by Marc Fried’s book The Huckleberry Pickers. The Smiley road figures large in Fried’s book.

In 1900, the Smiley brothers, owners of Mohonk Mountain House and Cliff House and Wildmere on Lake Minnewaska, expanded their already extensive carriage road network with a seven-mile road from Lake Awosting to Ellenville.

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