Tuesday, January 11, 2011

January 2011- Mt. Taurus, Hudson Highlands State Park

It was a windy, sunny hike up Mt Taurus (Bull Hill) trail on January 9th.  The crew: Tal, Carol, Rebekah, Michael, Christopher and Lauren.  This hike was led by Lauren.  We began our ascent on the white blazed Washburn trail which led us up to a quarry.  There were no white-tailed deer on this snow covered terrain, even though this is a common place to spot them in warmer seasons.  We continued up the white trail along the edge of the mountain, twisting and turning, and for the most part forging our own tracks with extraordinary views of the Hudson River, Cold Spring village, and the surrounding mountains.  It was a little worrisome at some points with the snow up to our mid-shins and the wind gusts ferociously blowing, and Rebekah, Tal and Michael were all wearing jeans and appeared to completely exposed to the wintry elements.  However, they kept smiling and trudged on.
Once we reached the peak of Bull Hill we stopped from a lunch break.  There were views of the Hudson River Valley with ice floats and Bear Mountain across the way.
Once we reached the blue blazed Notch trail it was smooth sailing down the mountain through stream beds and canopied woods to the red blazed trail then onto the blue blazed Cornish trail.  We passed some old stone structure ruins.  All I've discovered about it is that the first set was a Cornish barn and stable and the next set was from the Cornish mansion.  Michael suspects that the sunken well-type structure was a cistern.
The hike was about 7-7.5 miles and took approximately 4 hours which is pretty good considering the ice and snow.
Afterwards we attempted to warm up at the Bar and Restaurant in the old train station in Cold Spring.  The "Broken Leg" (hot apple cider and ginger brandy) was delicious!
Some great realizations:
  1. This was Carol's first winter hike in snow.  Yay Carol!
  2. Rebekah hasn't been hiking in the snow since she lived in Colorado.
  3. Tal has asthma, but she kicks ass and made it up that mountain without her inhaler.
I'm going to try to figure out how to post pictures of the group.
Thanks for a great day in the woods!

October 2010- Prospect Park, Brooklyn

Our first outing was a beautiful day spent with guides from the Brooklyn Audobon Society.  We [Rebekah, Carol, Tal, Kate, Lauren and Kim] met at the nature center to pick up binoculars and meet our guides.  We saw many birds: swans, Canada geese, robins, woodpeckers, and many others that I [Lauren] struggle to remember 4 months later.  If only I had used a science notebook.  Our walk took us through the forest as well as along the edge of Prospect Lake.