Thursday, August 17, 2017

Hiking from Cortlandt to Scarborough

Oscawana Point

This week's Ramblers hike started at Cortlandt, wound through several parks, and then headed south to Tarrytown. A few of us cut it short at Scarborough, however.

There was much less road walking than I expected (although a fair bit of paved greenway), and the hike was mostly flat, particularly in the second half. Some of the parks we wended our way through were more scenic than I expected, like the short trail to Oscawana Point, shown above.

After having lunch by the Hudson, we more or less headed straight south, eventually joining up with the Old Croton Aqueduct. By the time we exited at Scarborough, we had hiked 16 miles, with supposedly three more to go. They ended up hiking seven more, so I'm glad I cut out!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Inwood Park stroll

I had planned a bigger hike for Sunday but ended up under the weather, so I did a short stroll around Inwood Hill Park.

Path

On the way there, I went through Isham Park and discovered a garden I hadn't seen before - Bruce's Garden. It was quite charming. Below is what I assume is a student art project in the garden.

Pans

Friday, August 4, 2017

Prospect Park birding

Prospect Park

We went to Prospect Park to go look for birds. This, of course, is the Audubon Center on the pond.

Prospect Park

Here are some tiny little berries.

Prison duck

This guy is behind bars. Without a really great camera, you can't get good bird photos of smaller or faster birds, but ducks are easy.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Visiting Mt. Utsayantha

Mt. Utsayantha

Mt. Utsayantha is a Catskills peak but under 3500 feet, and the only one you can drive to. It's also a pretty spectacular bit of cultural appropriation. Back in the day, the town of Stamford wanted to get its share of tourists, so it made up a story about an "Indian princess" who killed herself when her lover died in war. They built a fake grave, and an observatory on the mountain where she supposedly died.

The observatory is still there (visible in the photo above), although a newer fire tower has been built, and the signage acknowledges the fakery. The view from the top is quite nice, as you can see.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Hiking Table and Peekamoose

Table & Peekamoose

I have only the vaguest recollections of previously hiking Table and Peekamoose. That's because I did them as part of The Six, and by the time we got to Table, we had already done four bushwhacks. I do remember literally kissing the trail, though, because I was excited to be on one.

This time, we did a shuttle hike from the Slide trailhead at Frost Valley Road to the Peekamoose trailhead on Peekamoose Road. At the Curtis-Ormsbee trail we made a slight detour. Well, actually, half our group went up the Wittenberg-Cornell-Slide trail and down Curtis-Ormsbee, while half of us turned up the Curtis-Ormsbee just as far as the second viewpoint. Neither viewpoint is particularly grand, although there is some steep climbing to get there.

From there we continued south. At one point we passed the eastern end of the Finger Lakes trail, which extends 580 miles through, you guessed it, the Finger Lakes, all the way to the border with Pennsylvania.

The hike is half over by the time one reaches Table, and from there it's a short jaunt to Peekamoose. Both have views, but neither have views right at the peak. The top photo is the summit of Table, and the bottom photo is the summit of Peekamoose.

On the way back to the car, we supposedly pass Reconnoiter Rock, which caused us the same doubts as Cornell Crack - there are so many rocks, why name this one? In this case, we weren't even sure which rock was Reconnoiter. But it's a long three miles out to the end of the trail - I guess we needed something to keep us on the lookout.

Table & Peekamoose