Mohonk Ramble to Guyot Hill

Let’s get the bad news outta the way first: I didn’t get up to Skytop, so no photos with stupendous views. It would have added 60 minutes to what was becoming a long day. Sunday was partly cloudy anyway. The good news: I found an important artifact of New York ski history, as we shall see.

lowland near Shawangunk ridge

When I think that there can’t possibly be anything I haven’t seen in a place, I’m often proven wrong. On Sunday morning, I flogged the shooting brake up the Thruway to New Paltz. Objective: Mohonk Preserve. Instead of the Spring Farm Road trailhead, or parking at the Mohonk gatehouse, I went to a trailhead off Butterville Road to explore the lower part of the trail network.

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Sterling Forest Hike: A Cautionary Tale

Finally, a day off with nice weather. Unfortunately, working until 9 PM Saturdays makes for poor odds for a dawn patrol start Sunday morning. As I organized my kit, I had no particular plans. Only that it was too late in the morning for a Catskills expedition.

Sterling Forest kiln

I fired up the diesel shooting brake, then I looked at a road map… anyone still use those? Jenny Jump, Stevens State Park… nothing in NJ appealed.

There was Sterling Forest, abutting the NJ-NY state line in Tuxedo. Never been there. Why not? I slipped the clutch, and off we rolled.

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The Punishment Remains the Same

After a year off, the Climb to the Castle returned to Whiteface Mountain on October 3rd. I drove up on Saturday with some misgivings. Two weeks earlier, I DNF’d the Macedonia Brook 25 kilometer trail race in Connecticut. I ran my plan in the hills and on the flats. But there were two brutally steep, technical downhill bits where I was so slow I didn’t feel like I was racing. I dropped halfway through. I drove home wondering if I was done.

Whiteface foliage

After collecting my bib and buying groceries, I headed to the hostel. As it turned out the the Saint Lawrence University women’s nordic ski team was staying there. They were racing the Climb to the Castle to top off a long training weekend.

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