Weine aus Passion - Weingut Karl Haidle

WINTER 2015
Adirondack Mountain Club
NORTH JERSEY RAMAPO CHAPTER NEWSLETTER & HIKE SCHEDULE
A Message From the Chair
Fellow Hikers,
As I write this we've just had our first snowfall and the annual consumer shopping frenzy has already begun. Most people find this time
of the year a bit stressful so I'd like to suggest something to help you relieve that stress – go take a hike! Get outside, into the woods
where you can clear your head and let the stress and pressure of the holidays melt away. If you haven't gone winter hiking or haven't
gone in a while you owe it to yourself to give it a try. There are a few essentials that you'll need for this time of year:
• Traction Devices – there are several different kinds depending on your preference and budget. Stabilicers and Microspikes are the
most popular but be sure to choose ones that are right for you.
• Layering, including a windproof layer- don't forget that you'll cool down quickly at the lunch stop so be sure to have layers you can
take off and put back on.
• Ear/head protection – especially if it's windy.
• Hand/foot warmers – you can pick these up at virtually any retail store, including big box retailers.
• Supplies – you'll need a bit more than in the warm months, including energy bars, a space blanket, and a flashlight or headlight.
I'd also like to point out one more thing that we as a club need. YOU! We
are in great need of hike leaders to keep our schedule full and provide
the best hiking in the area. Even if you've never led a hike please get out,
get involved, get active. Just ask any hike leader or club officer and we'll
be glad to assist.
A BIG thank you to everyone who volunteers their time and effort to
make our club what it is. This includes the Board, everyone who helps
with the schedule, and of course our fantastic hike leaders.
On a final note, I want to welcome Karen Rose as the incoming Chapter
Chair as well as the entire Board and to thank everyone who has helped
to make my time as Chair special. Karen, we know you'll do a great job
in leading our club into the future.
See you on the trails!
Photo by Peter Tilgner
Jeff Sovelove
Chapter Chair
Winter Sterling Lake
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HIKER’S GUIDE
RESPONSIBILITIES - Hikers with children under 16 and new hikers are required to contact
the hike leader in advance to determine if the hike is suitable for them. Minors under
16 are welcome on day hikes when accompanied by a parent or guardian. No person
under 18 shall participate in overnight outings unless accompanied by a parent or adult
sponsor over 21. The hike leader may refuse to allow a person to hike who is judged
to be poorly equipped or unable to do the published hike. Pets are not permitted on
hikes unless the hike description clearly states that it is “dog friendly”. Non- members are
welcome on two hikes after which ADK membership is required. Participants should get
to the hike at least 10 minutes prior to the starting time.
RISKS - As with all physical activities, hiking involves hazards. Persons participate at their
own risk and will be asked to sign a statement acknowledging that fact before starting
the hike. Prior to the hike please advise the leader of any medical condition or physical
liability that could affect you during the hike.
FOOTWEAR AND CLOTHING - Wear clothing suited to the weather and carry extra
garments for unexpected weather conditions. Dress in thin layers so that you can
adjust the number of layers as required to maintain comfort. In winter carry a wool cap
and wool or polypropylene gloves or mitts and a windproof shell. Be prepared for rain.
Bring a rain jacket and rain pants, preferably of the type that permits venting body moisture. Wear comfortable, sturdy boots. Do not wear cotton garments in winter.
DRINK AND FOOD - Adequate hydration is important year round. Drink frequently
during the hike. Carry food to enjoy during the midday lunch stop.
DOG-FRIENDLY HIKES - All hikers with dogs must abide by park leash regulations.
HIKE RATINGS - represent the Pace, Distance and Terrain covered during the hike.
A hike’s rating is determined by the hike leader.
PACE:
A - fast - 2.5 mph or faster
B - moderate - about 2 mph
C - easy - 1.5 mph or less
DISTANCE: is given in miles as noted
TERRAIN: A - Strenuous, long ups and downs, some rock scrambling possible.
B - Moderate ups and downs as occur typically in Harriman. C - Generally flat with little elevation change.
MAPS - The TC number indicates a NY-NJ Trail Conference map for the area of the hike.
For example: TC-118 refers to the Southern Harriman Park map.
ABBREVIATIONS - NCA-No Calls After . . . , Pref.- Leader’s contact preference.
EXPENSE SHARING - When car-pooling, passengers are expected to offer the driver funds
sufficient to cover the cost of fuel, tolls and parking fees. A $3.00 minimum per person
is recommended. Most hike trailhead meeting locations can be found on NY-NJ Trail
Conference maps.
HIKE CANCELLATION POLICY - Sometimes an illness, injury or other unforeseen problem
will make it impossible for a hike leader to lead his/her hike as announced in the schedule. When this happens the leader should first try to find a substitute leader so the hike
can proceed. The hike schedule chair person or any club officer can assist if necessary. If
no substitute leader can be found then the leader or a substitute should appear at the
hike meeting place to inform hikers of the situation. If a qualified leader volunteers, he/
she should be given the sign-in sheet and the hike can proceed as scheduled. If the
hike is one that requires preregistration, the leader must inform all who registered of the
change by phone or e-mail.
ADK STICKERS
Stickers for your car windows are available by
contacting Phyllis Key at [email protected] or Laurie Schweighardt at [email protected] There is NO charge
for the stickers. Be sure to give your full name and address so they can be mailed to you !
ADK NORTH JERSEY RAMAPO CHAPTER
385 N. Franklin Tpke, Box 7, Ramsey NJ 07446
For information: [email protected]
www.hudsonhikers.org/catskills.html
OFFICERS
CHAIR - Karen Rose
201-962-8546 [email protected]
VICE CHAIR – Daphne Downes
845-712-5076 [email protected]
TREASURER – Allen Grunthal
973-728-8057 [email protected]
SECRETARY - Fred Hodde
973-728-3223 [email protected]
COMMITTEE CHAIRS
ADK BOARD OF DIRECTORS
John Jurasek
845-519-4247 [email protected]
Alternate Director
Christopher Tausch
201-669-3113 [email protected]
CONSERVATION - Chris Connolly
201-816-9465 [email protected]
HIKE SCHEDULE - Peter Tilgner
201-871-3531 [email protected]
SIGN-IN FORM COLLECTION - Betty Heald
201-967-2937 [email protected]
SIGN-IN FORM MAILING - Lou O’Neill
845-357-0497 [email protected]
MAILING - Denis & Joan Kmiec
845-634-1397 [email protected]
MARKETING - Peter Reiner
845-634-7635 [email protected]
MEMBERSHIP - Phyllis Key
201-768-5573 [email protected]
MERRYWEATHER HIKER
[email protected]
NEWSLETTER - Judith DeBiase
845-354-7736 [email protected]
NEWSLETTER COPY EDITOR- Sheila Rizzo
201-567-8108 [email protected]
SUNSHINE - June Slade
973-835-2832 [email protected]
TRAILS - Karen Rose
201-962-8546 [email protected]
WEB MASTER Richard Sumner
845-362-8470 [email protected]
Trail Talk is published quarterly in December, March,
June and September. Deadline for submissions is
generally one month prior to publication date.
Please send articles, photos or other contributions to
[email protected]
If you do not receive newsletter by the end of each
quarter, please contact Phyllis Key 201-768-5573
[email protected]
HIKE SCHEDULE • WINTER 2015 • JANUARY • FEBRUARY • MARCH
Thursday, 1/1 Happy Harriman New Year
B 6/8 B
Chris Connolly [email protected] or 201-321-6605
Start out 2015 with a winter hike. Meet 10 AM at Reeves
Meadow Parking Area off 7 Lakes Drive. Traction devices
may be necessary. TC Harriman South map 118.
Sunday, 1/4
Fahnestock Loop
B7B
Fred Hodde [email protected] or 973-728-3223(h)/ 973-7227824(c)
A favorite hike in Fahnestock. It includes a nice section of the
AT. Meet at 9:30 AM at first parking area on the right (where
the AT crosses) at Canopus Lake (take Rt. 301 from Cold
Spring). Come appropriately prepared (i.e. traction devices
as needed) for winter hiking. Foul weather will cancel. Call
before 8:00 AM if uncertain. TC East Hudson map 103.
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Saturday, 1/17 Jordan Pond Loop
B 6.5 B
Robert Permutt (R [email protected] (preferred) or
914-588-0212 Meet at 9:30 AM at the Pelton Pond Parking area on Route
301 and we will shuttle to the trailhead. This hike is a circular
loop in Fahnestock State Park. Highlights include Jordan
Pond and Clove Creek. Depending on weather conditions,
traction devices may be necessary. Registration required for
hike on or before January 16. TC East Hudson map 103.
Sunday, 1/18 Ramapo Ramble
B 6/8 B
Chris Connolly [email protected] or 201-321-6605
Meet 9:30 AM Ramapo Reservation Parking Lot off Rte 202.
Traction devices may be necessary. TC North Jersey map
115.
Thursday, 1/8 In The Woods C 5/6 B
Richard Sumner [email protected] or 845-362-8470
Harriman or nearby parks. This will be a C pace and an easy
route, no serious hills or rock scrambles. Call or e-mail for
details the week of the hike. Details will also be posted on
Facebook and the Yahoo group.
Thursday, 1/22 In The Woods
B 6/8 B
Paul Margiotta [email protected] (pref.) or 201-693-6705
Active Thursday hikers will receive a group e-mail from leader
by Tuesday for location, time and other details of hike. Others
can contact the leader by 7:00 PM on Wednesday. No beginners please.
Sunday, 1/11 Silvermine Circular
B 6.5 B
Chris Connolly [email protected] or 201-321-6605
Loop hike using Menomine, LP, and AT trails. Meet 10 AM
Silvermine Parking Area off 7 Lakes Drive. Traction devices
may be necessary. TC Harriman North map 119.
Saturday, 1/24 Nurian Trail from The Elk Pen
B8B
Peter Reiner
[email protected] or 845-323-7697
Meet at 9:30 AM at the Elk Pen parking area off Arden Valley
Rd. Hiking will be on the Stahahe Brook and Nurian Trails
through western Harriman Park with lunch on top of Black
Rock. Return will be on the White Bar and Dunning Trails
back to the Elk Pen. Must contact hike leader to register for
the hike. TC Harriman North map 119.
Thursday, 1/15 Johnsontown Circular B 6.5 B
Fred Hodde
[email protected] or (h) 973-728-3223/(c)
973-722-7824
Meet at the Johnsontown Circle at 9:30 AM. The planned
route will be on the Blue Disc, Victory and White Bar trails.
Come appropriately prepared (i.e. traction devices as needed) for winter hiking. Registration by e-mail preferred. Call cell
before 9:00 AM if the weather is questionable. TC Harriman
South map 118.
Thursday 1/15 In The Woods
C5C
Georgette Fazzari [email protected] (pref) or 551-2652369 (NCA 9pm)
Contact leader the week of hike for details and to register.
Saturday, 1/17 Jockey Hollow
B6B
Jeffrey Sovelove [email protected]
Leader’s choice of trails depending on conditions at Jockey
Hollow National Park in Morristown. See http://www.nps.gov/
morr/planyourvisit/directions.htm for directions and information.
Bring water, lunch, hiking boots and traction devices if necessary.
Meet at the Visitors’ Center at 10 AM. Inclement weather cancels.
Joint ADK/Sierra Club hike.
Thursday,1/29 In the Woods
B 6/8 B
Debbie Bell [email protected] or 845-358-8386 (NCA 9 PM)
Varied terrain in Harriman or nearby parks. Contact leader for
hike details.
Saturday, 1/31 Winter Harriman Hike B 5/6 B
Karen Rose
[email protected] or 201-962-8546
Meet 10 AM Sebago Boat Launch on Seven Lakes Drive.
Weather will determine route. May need snowshoes or traction devices. Must contact leader to register. Bad driving
conditions will cancel hike. TC Harriman South map 118.
Saturday, 2/7 Patriots Path Stroll C5C
Jeffrey Sovelove [email protected]
Take an easy stroll on Patriots Path in Morristown. This 3-5
mile stroll will start out from the Speedwell Lake Parking Lot
at 10 AM across the street from Historic Speedwell. See the
Morris County Parks website http://www.morrisparks.org for
directions. The path is wide, partly paved, partly crushed stabilized gravel with very little in the way of elevation gains. Please
bring water and a light snack. Great for beginners. Inclement
weather cancels. Optional lunch afterwards. Joint ADK/Sierra Club
hike.
Pre-registration is advised in case of a change in schedule. Changes will be posted on Facebook and the Yahoo Group
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HIKE SCHEDULE • WINTER 2015 • JANUARY • FEBRUARY • MARCH
Saturday, 2/7 From The Equestrian Center
B 6.5 B
to Kakiat Park Peter Reiner [email protected] or 845-323-7697
Meet 9 AM at Kakiat Park parking lot located three miles east
of downtown Suffern off Route 202 in Montebello. We will
shuttle to the Equestrian Center also off Route 202. Hiking on
the Pine Meadow and SBM trails to the Kakiat Trail. Contact
hike leader to register. TC Harriman South map 118.
Thursday, 2/12 Winter Walk in the Woods
B 3/6 B
Fred Hodde [email protected] or 973-728-3223(h)/
973-722-7824(c)
If you received snowshoes for Christmas and haven’t used
them yet, this will probably be a great chance to try them.
This is a literal “Walk in the Woods” in Wawayanda with very
little ascent. Actual distance will depend on the conditions.
Meet at 9:30 AM in the Park Office parking lot. Registration by
e-mail is preferred. Call 973-722-7824 before 9:00 AM if the
weather is questionable. Proper footgear required (stabilicers,
crampons or snowshoes) as appropriate for the conditions
(“think snow”). TC Map 116.
Thursday, 2/19 In The Woods
C 5/6 B
Richard Sumner [email protected] or 845-362-8470
Harriman or nearby parks. This will be a C pace and an easy route, no serious hills or rock scrambles. Call or e-mail
for details the week of the hike. Details will also be posted on
Facebook and the Yahoo group.
Saturday, 2/21 Reeves Meadow to Ramapo Torne B 5/7 B
Karen Rose [email protected] or 201-962-8546 (must email
or call to register)
Meet 9:30AM at Reeves Visitor Center on Seven Lakes
Drive. Up the Seven Hills Trail and then weather conditions
will determine the route. Must have traction devices or snowshoes if ice or snow. Bad driving conditions cancel hike. TC
Harriman South map 118.
Thursday, 2/26 Ramapo Reservation
C 4.5/5 C+
Phyllis Stewart [email protected] or 201-327-6319
(NCA 9 PM)
Meet at Ramapo Reservation 10 AM. Route to be determined
depending on weather.
Sunday, 3/1
Lunch On The Bottle Cap
B7B
P.Tilgner and S. Gordon [email protected] or 201-8713531 (c) 201-381-0592
Meet 9:30 AM at Lake Skannatati Parking off Seven Lakes
Drive. Hike the Long Path to the Bottle Cap. Then on to
the RD, Times Square, and the ASB out. Heavy snow, rain
cancels. Please register for this hike. TC Harriman North map
119.
Thursday, 3/5 In the Woods
C5C
Debbie Bell [email protected] or 845-358-8386 (NCA 9 PM)
Varied terrain in Harriman or nearby parks. Contact leader for
hike details.
Saturday, 3/8
Daylight Savings Time Begins.
Thursday, 3/12 In The Woods
B 6/8 B
Paul Margiotta [email protected] (pref.) or 201-693-6705
Active Thursday hikers will receive a group e-mail from leader
by Tuesday for location, time and other details of hike. Others
can contact the leader by 7:00 PM on Wednesday. No beginners please.
Thursday, 3/12 Hessian Lake
C3C
Louise Parnell [email protected] or 845-290-5287
Meet at 10AM in the Bear Mt. parking lot for a walk around
Hessian Lake. TC Harriman North map 119.
Saturday, 3/14 Lewis Morris Park
B7B
Jeff Sovelove [email protected]
We will start at Sunrise Lake, then hike to the upper parking
lot and back down to the lake using a combination of the Yellow and Red trails. The pace will be a moderate to slow one.
See the Morris County Parks Commission web site www.
morrisparks.org/aspparks/lmdir.asp for directions. Bring water,
lunch, hiking boots, and traction devices if necessary. Meet in
parking lot at 10 AM. Inclement weather cancels. Joint ADK/Sierra
Club hike.
Thursday, 3/19 Congers Lake Walk
C3C
Louise Parnell [email protected] or 845-290-5287
Meet at 10 AM in the parking lot on Gilcrist Rd. off Route 303
in Congers. TC Hudson Palisades map 111.
Thursday, 3/19 High Tor In/Out
B5B
Fred Hodde [email protected] or 973-728-3223(h)/
973-722-7824(c)
This is a nice walk with views of the Hudson. Meet 9:30 AM
in the parking lot at the intersection of the Long Path and
Route 33 Come appropriately prepared (i.e., traction devices
as needed) for winter hiking. Registration by e-mail preferred.
Foul weather will cancel. Call before 8:00 AM if weather is
uncertain. TC Hudson Palisades map 112.
Saturday, 3/21 Doris Duke, Allis and the AT
B 5.5 B
P.Tilgner and S. Gordon [email protected] or 201-8713531 (c) 201-381-0592
Hike Sterling Forest’s newest trail, the Doris Duke, with lunch
on Mombasha High Point. Meet 10 AM at the Doris Duke
Trailhead Parking on Benjamin Meadow Rd. From Rt. 17
take 17A for about 3 mi. passing the Ski and Renaissance
Festival area. Benjamin Meadow Rd. will be on your right with
trail access parking 0.3 mi. on left. Please register for this
hike. Deep snow or rain cancels. TC Sterling Forest map 100
(2013 edition).
Pre-registration is advised in case of a change in schedule. Changes will be posted on Facebook and the Yahoo Group
HIKE SCHEDULE • WINTER 2015 • JANUARY • FEBRUARY • MARCH
Sunday, 3/22 Greenbrook Sanctuary Trails
B5C
Peter Reiner
[email protected] 845-323-7697
Meet 9:30 AM at the entrance gate to the Greenbrook Sanctuary located off Route 9W, Tenafly, NJ. Hiking will be on a
variety of trails with some great views of the Hudson River.
Must contact hike leader to register and be admitted to the
Sanctuary. TC Hudson Palisades map 108.
Thursday, 3/26 Rockland Lake Walk C3C
Louise Parnell [email protected] or 845-290-5287
Meet at 10 AM at parking lot # 1 off Route 9W in Congers for
a walk. TC Hudson Palisades map 111.
Thursday, 3/26 In The Woods C 5/6 B
Richard Sumner [email protected] or 845-362-8470
Harriman or nearby parks. This will be a C pace and an easy
route, no serious hills or rock scrambles. Call or e-mail for
details the week of the hike. Details will also be posted on
Facebook and the Yahoo group.
Last-minute changes in the hike schedule
will be posted on Facebook and/or
Yahoo. This is the place to look for cancellations, changes in meeting place or
time and last-minute additions to the hike schedule.
The easiest way to get there for the first time is from
our website home page. Just click on the icon to go
to those pages. Remember, you don’t
have to join Yahoo or Facebook to
see our pages.
MANY THANKS, HIKE LEADERS …
. . . for sending me your hiker registration forms. It is so
very important that we have them on file. Thank you,
too, for returning unused Accident Forms and stamped
envelopes. I see that they get back to Lou for re-cycling.
Comments about your hikes are also appreciated.
Betty Heald, Sign-In Form Collection
201-967-2937
[email protected]
Welcome New Members
Karen King – Boonton Township NJ
Aviva Sakolsky – Airmont NY
Lisa & David Miller – Woodmere NY (affiliate)
Thomas Bruno – Ocean NJ
Mary Ann & Roger Cucci – Montclair NJ
Diane Fortino – Ridgewood NJ
Frank Kamarer – New City NY
Jonathan Little – Dumont NJ
Justin Riemersma – Arlington VA
Jerry Somma – New Foundland NJ
Chris Watts – Lebanon NJ
Carrino Higgins – Ridgefield Park NJ (affiliate)
Dennis Glew – Bethlehem PA
Richard Kerber – Rivervale NJ
K&M McDonald – New York NY (affiliate)
Michael Slackman – Morristown NJ
James Streit – Tarrytown NY
Robert Tranter – North Bergen NJ
Rob Basso – Saddle River NJ
John Hefferman – Sunnyside NY
Walter Neumann – Mahwah NJ
Karl Berwer – Tappan NY
Joseph Bonner – Fort Lee NJ
Kim Boritza – Greenwood Lake NY
Anthony Colombo – Highland Lakes NJ
Kathleen & Stephen Duch – Pearl River NY
Paul Gordon – Washington Township NJ
Jeanette Grauer – Bedminster NJ
Francis Harvey – Voorhees NJ
Robert Huey – Yardley PA
Marata & David Maas – Ridgewood NJ
Jim McGill – Tuxedo Park NY
Laura Schreiber – Newton NJ
Mindy Rosenthal & John Stephens – Verona NJ
Mark Sullivan – Ramsey NJ
Welcome Back
Ana & Joseph Clemente – Hoboken NJ
Richard Silkes – Kinnelon NJ
Christine & Philip Mousin – Teaneck NJ
Andrew Dodsworth – Fair Lawn NJ
Barbara Hullings – East Hanover NJ
Richard Moore – Monroe NY
Pre-registration is advised in case of a change in schedule. Changes will be posted on Facebook and the Yahoo Group
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6
HIKER’S YOGA: Setu Bandhasana
By Deanna Felicetta, RYT-E
In winter, a bridge can be a valuable asset on a hike. A stream
crossing with ice-covered rocks and ice cold water may make you
rethink the route for your winter hike.
A well-constructed bridge can put
a smile on the face of a winter hiker.
A bridge may be impressive to view
and cross, but others work with the
available materials and terrain to get
the job done. I have always felt that
Setu Bandhasana is this kind of bridge.
It works with each Yogi’s body to get
that working bridge built! So let’s get
started.
Lie on your yoga mat with your back flat on the floor. Please DO
take off your socks for proper grounding. It is important to take a
few moments to relax and focus on allowing your back and spine
to flatten onto the floor. Allow the back of your shoulders and upper arms to lie firmly on the floor. Your head and neck should be
relaxed, and turning your head left to right should be gentle and
easy. Now lie still and just breathe.
Next bend your knees upward and place your feet flat on the
floor, as if you were planning to stand on them. Move your feet
close to your buttocks. When you think they are as close as possible just make one more effort to get them that little bit closer
and truly flat on the floor. Make sure that your knees are pointing
right up and that you have not let them separate or “V” out. How
far you come up may depend on your knees and be a work in
progress, but do not “V” out.
You will now begin to stand on your
feet, pressing down firmly as you raise
your hips. Press down on your upper
back, shoulders and upper arm, as you
raise your torso and create a sloped
and straight bridge. Keep it stable
by working your buttock, stomach
and leg muscles. (Remember NO “V”
knees.) Notice how free and open
your chest is, and allow your breath to
be free-flowing and full on both the
inhalation and exhalation. Press down gently again on your flat
feet and shoulder/back area. This will expand your chest just that
little bit more. Aaahhhh! After a few breaths, begin to come down
slowly, one vertebra at a time. When you are flat again, relax. It is
always good to do a second bridge. Your breaths are usually fuller
during the second posture. It is nice to finish this posture by gently hugging your knees to your chest for a few moments before
you finally sit back up.
Enjoy all your winter bridges. Hope to see you at a snowy bridge
crossing in 2015!
NAMESTE! Deanna
Good-bye and Good Luck
by Marilyn Siskind
Photo by Deanna Felicetta
Aaron Schoenberg and wife Kathy are moving to Arizona. A long
time member of the Ramapo Chapter, Aaron held many positions
on our board: Treasurer, Vice-Chair, and Chair. He also served as
Hike Chair for many years.
In the early days of the Ramapo Chapter our schedule only ran
from September to June. Aaron expanded it to include the summer months--and then proceeded to lead one hike a week.
Aaron organized and led over 20 trips to the White Mts., 6 sections on the Long Trail in Vermont, hikes on the AT and most
recently hiking and exploring Acadia National Park.
Of course during the year Aaron led innumerable hikes. He inaugurated the memorial hike--the last Sunday in July in Harriman
State Park.
Aaron---we will miss you.
View From Black Dome
Dues Money
Please be aware that all dues money is handled at our Headquarters in Lake George NY. The address is 814 Goggins Road,
Lake George NY 12845-4117. Dues can be paid either by mailing a check, calling 1-800-395-8080, OR on-line at www.ADK.
org
PLEASE DO NOT SEND TO NORTH JERSEY RAMAPO CHAPTER
Running and Backpacking Vermont’s Long Trail
7
By Allen Grunthal
After a long day on the trail, I took off my heavy backpack and
was finally relaxing while watching the sun set on Stratton Pond,
the largest body of water on the Long Trail. The scene was sublime and wow I thought, it doesn’t get any better than this. Then I
saw the full moon rise and light up the landscape. Wow I thought,
it doesn’t get any better than this. Until of course the sun rose the
next morning over Stratton Pond.
I recently retired from my life-long accounting gig. At the top
of my bucket list was to backpack Vermont’s Long Trail. What is
the Long Trail you ask? The Long Trail is our country’s oldest long
distance hiking trail, stretching 273 miles over the entire length of
the state of Vermont, going up and over 53 mountains from the
Massachusetts border to the Canadian border. It runs along the
main spine of the Green Mountains and is quite rugged, especially the section in northern Vermont.
My initial plan was to backpack the entire Long Trail. I had previously day-hiked many of the biggest peaks on the trail, and
thought it would be a great experience to backpack it in one
month-long push. My wife Diane kindly offered to support me,
helping me to re-supply on a weekly basis and take a rest day
when necessary at our ski club lodge. But I also love to trail run,
and I thought this would be a unique opportunity to run one of
our country’s great trails. So my revised plan was to run half the
Long Trail, and backpack half the trail. I had never before backpacked more than a few days, nor run a trail more than 10 miles in
a day in mild mountains in NJ. Could a dude pushing 60 run and
backpack the whole Long Trail? I was about to find out.
I trained hard and was in good physical condition, so I decided
to start the backpacking part of my Long Trail adventure at the
Canadian border and head south. I had heard this northern section was extremely rugged, but I pondered, how hard could it be?
Going steeply up
and down mountain after mountain
on roots and rocks
with a 45 lb pack
15 miles a day? This
is fun? The scenery was stunning,
but my body got
beat up and I had
to take a 0 (rest)
day earlier than
expected to heal
various body parts.
Rather than continue the backpack
after the rest day,
I decided to mix it
up and trail run in
Beginning of Long Trail at MA Border
between the multi-day backpack stints. That was a good decision,
as running with a light daypack stressed my body differently than
backpacking with a heavy pack. But both were tough.
A normal backpack day would be about 15 miles, the actual daily
length determined by the distance between the shelters. The
use of a shelter (lean-to, camp, lodge) became essential to me,
as I jettisoned my tent from my backpack to lighten my load. The
running distances were longer, typically 15 to 25 miles including thousands of vertical feet of ascent and descent. The most
difficult day of exercise of my life was when I ran a 24-mile section
of the trail up and down Mt Mansfield (VT’s biggest mountain)
and Bolton Mtn, covering 8000’ ascent and 9000’ descent. I was so
exhausted in the latter part of the run, I had to lean against trees
occasionally to keep from falling down.
One of the great pleasures of my Long Trail adventure was to
meet and share shelters with Long Trail and Appalachian Trail
through-hikers, some going northbound and some going southbound. The AT coincides with the Long Trail from southern to
central Vermont for 100 miles, at which time the AT hangs a right
and heads toward New Hampshire while the Long Trail continues
north to Canada. The male AT’ers were easy to spot – slim with
beards and a long stride. Except for the guy who asked me to
pass him as he was walking slowly. Why slowly? He was doing
the entire AT barefoot. A bit surprising to me was the number of
women AT’ers of all ages hiking alone. So the AT is not only a guy
thing.
There were some memorable moments on the trail that I will not
soon forget: A climb up the Stratton Mountain fire tower in perfect weather revealing a stunning 4-state (VT, NH, NY, MA) view. A
night alone in a lean-to with a coyote howling just outside the entrance of the open shelter. A cold, wet day discovering ice in the
trees on Camel’s Hump. This is summer? My wife and best man at
my wedding joining me to climb Bromley Mountain. Lunch while
sitting on a summit lift chair at the Mad River Glen ski area, only
to see the ski lift start moving minutes after I got off the chair. My
wife meeting me a few miles from the finish on my last day to
hold hands and walk with me as I finished the Long Trail.
For those of you contemplating your own Long Trail adventure,
I recommend you begin in early September. The crowds of the
summer and the bugs will be gone, and the foliage on the trees
will begin turning magnificent shades of red, orange and yellow.
Going from south to north will tune up your body for the more
rugged northern region.
And finally, I would like to thank my wonderful wife Diane,
without whose emotional and logistical support my Long Trail
adventure would not have been possible.
8
Adirondack Mountain Club
North Jersey Ramapo Chapter
385 N Franklin Tpke, Box 7
Ramsey, NJ 07446
WINTER 2015
Non-Profit Org.
U.S. Postage Paid
MONSEY NY
#5612
Photo by Allen Grunthal
Address Service Requested
Sunset on Stratton Pond
www.hudsonhikers.org