Columbus Weekend Bike Tour

Mancation® weekend started at a fashionably late 3pm(ish) at The Hub in Brant Lake. Wilderness Property Management built the trail network this spring behind the establishment to create the Brant Lake Bike Park.

Trail builder for WPM showing alternate lines

The Stairway to Heaven starts right behind the bar/restaurant/bike shop and climbs a tough 400 feet to the first intersection. To the left is a climb to the South Summit where you get a short downhill to reward you for your climb.

Turn to Ricks Run and climb some more to the North Summit of Bartonville Mountain and descend to the overlook for beautiful vistas of Brant Lake.

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Jay Mountain NY Ramble

Having been fortunate to bag my 46 High Peaks some years ago, my Adirondack goals are a different these days. While I’d love to return to Haystack, Marcy, and the Great Range, I’m also looking for peaks that I haven’t ascended before — whether or not they’re 4000+ feet high. And I’m looking for new approaches to peaks I’ve already hiked in the past.

Last weekend, I returned for a more laid-back type of weekend. For my Saturday tempo run at Mount van Hoevenberg, the weather was perfect. Late Saturday afternoon, Executive Disorder tore up the Ausable Brewing Company with a great set. The pièce de resistance was a Jay Mountain hike on Sunday.

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Valcour Island: Battle of the Waves

Valcour Island sits off the western shore of Lake Champlain, just south of Plattsburgh. It’s another of those spots in upstate New York where what you see today doesn’t even start to tell the story of the place’s history.

Valcour Island was the site of a naval battle during the Revolutionary War in which Benedict Arnold contested dominance of Lake Champlain just enough to prevent the British from pushing south in 1776.

There is only a half mile of water between Valcour and the shore. Though it always beckoned to me, sitting out there, right across from a big concrete boat ramp in Peru NY, I always felt better staying close to shore when paddling with my sons.

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