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Backpacker Magazine – May 2013

First Night Out: Views

Three hikes with spectacular views

by: Sarah L. Stewart and Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan

Upper Green River Lake (Jeff Diener)
Upper Green River Lake (Jeff Diener)
Greenstone Lake (Dave Miller)
Greenstone Lake (Dave Miller)

High Peaks Wilderness, NY
Van Hoevenberg Trail

Mellow hikes are hard to find in the High Peaks: The terrain is so rugged even the soil has a hard time holding on (look for the bald scars left behind when torrential rains trigger slides on the peaks’ rocky faces). The route to Marcy Dam is an exception, combining a nearly flat trail with the mountain views that make this region a backpacker favorite. Meander through mature stands of red pine and yellow birch, paralleling MacIntyre Brook for part of the 2.2-mile trek to the pond at Marcy Dam. From there, three peaks—slide-striped, 4,715-foot Mt. Colden, 3,832-foot Avalanche Mountain, and 4,580-foot Wright Peak—frame a 180-degree panorama. Choose from one of four lean-tos and 20 campsites around the pond; the middle lean-to on the west affords the best mountain view.
Go Late September/early October for fall colors Get there From Keene, take NY 73 west 10.9 miles to a left on Adirondack Loj Rd. Follow 4.4 miles to park at Adirondack Loj ($10/day). Permit None required Map Trails Illustrated Adirondack Park Lake Placid/High Peaks ($12, natgeomaps .com) Contact adk.org Trip ID 17038





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READERS COMMENTS

Star Star Star
john
Jan 19, 2014

Would be nice if the picture that went with the high peaks article was from NY.

Star Star Star Star Star
Mike
Jan 17, 2014

The Wind River hike above is a good one for getting started. There are a lot of moose up that drainage so be smart. If you fish, get a license and take some gear. Camp away from the trail, which is easy to do, and have a more wilderness-like experience. Late August to early Sept. is a good time. Snow is gone and the bugs are gone. Hunting season usually begins in mid-Sept.

Star Star Star Star Star
AZ Hiker
Jan 16, 2014

Live to hike another day by staying found and knowing how to use a compass. Even skilled explorers can become lost or somehow end up spending the night hunkered down because of weather or injury. Many people never consider that they might end up spending more nights outdoors than they planned on or waiting for medical help --and so they hike without the essentials. Day-hikes can be the most dangerous because hikers usually carry minimal supplies. Learn what to pack for a day-hike, what to do if you get lost, how to get rescued, and survival packing just in case you end up unexpectedly spending the night outdoors. Read "Felix the Sugar Glider Be Safe Hike Smart" (Amazon). Learn how to orient yourself using a compass, a compass and a map, a map and no compass, no compass and no map. A compass doesn't need a signal, satellites, or batteries and works in all types of weather, day or night, but you need to know how to use it and this book makes learning how to use a compass easy. Learn how to stay found by using a compass and paying attention to your surroundings. The ability to know your way and know where you are is something we all need in any survival situation not just while hiking. This book is for all ages. Look for it on Amazon, "Felix the Sugar Glider Be Safe Hike Smart."

Star Star Star Star Star
AZ Hiker
Jan 16, 2014

Live to hike another day by staying found and knowing how to use a compass. Even skilled explorers can become lost or somehow end up spending the night hunkered down because of weather or injury. Many people never consider that they might end up spending more nights outdoors than they planned on or waiting for medical help --and so they hike without the essentials. Day-hikes can be the most dangerous because hikers usually carry minimal supplies. Learn what to pack for a day-hike, what to do if you get lost, how to get rescued, and survival packing just in case you end up unexpectedly spending the night outdoors. Read "Felix the Sugar Glider Be Safe Hike Smart" (Amazon). Learn how to orient yourself using a compass, a compass and a map, a map and no compass, no compass and no map. A compass doesn't need a signal, satellites, or batteries and works in all types of weather, day or night, but you need to know how to use it and this book makes learning how to use a compass easy. Learn how to stay found by using a compass and paying attention to your surroundings. The ability to know your way and know where you are is something we all need in any survival situation not just while hiking. This book is for all ages. Look for it on Amazon, "Felix the Sugar Glider Be Safe Hike Smart."

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