Hiking season 2015 is almost here. I am getting ready for the first hike of the season in about a week. Last year I completed the east half of the Finger Lakes Trail, so now I begin working my way west from around Ithaca. The first hike will be a little over 15 miles. Check […]
FLT Map: Tower Rd (M16) east to Hines Rd (M16)
I decided to take a day off work and go hiking and hopefully get some of the fall colors. I had looked at the long-range forecast the previous week and Monday looked to be a decent fall day, crisp in the morning and warm by mid-day. As the weekend came the forecast became more unsettled and uncertain.
Monday morning dawned cold, but bright and sunny. After eating breakfast, loading my pack and supplies into the car I set out on the one hour drive to the trailhead. The sun chased me most of the drive, but as I neared the trailhead a wall of dark clouds began to build.
Many of my hikes are solo hikes, but on occasion my friend Tim has joined me. Since this was the hike to the Eastern Terminus of the FLT he decided to come along. In comparison to many of my hikes this one might not seem very “interesting” at first look. The hike was nearly all road walk, 19 miles of road and 2.6 miles of trail. It was also a very flat hike since it was mostly road; the total ascent was only 652 feet over nearly 22 miles, but even long flat road walks can offer some good photo opportunities.
My previous hike in July had left me with one more hike before I would reach the end of the FLT. I decided to leave that hike for the fall and hopefully get some great pictures with the leaves changing color, unfortunately that hike was still a little too early and the leaves had not changed much. Since I was holding that hike for later I needed another hike. The route on M28 had recently undergone a major change so I decided this was a good time to go back and work on that reroute. The entire reroute would take two hikes, but I could get part of it done this time.
This hike would take me from the Apex Boat Launch on NY 268 near the Cannonsville Reservoir, up to the old O&W Railroad bed and down along old NY 10. I would criss-cross the new NY 10 at several points before joining up with my previous track that went up Beers Brook Rd.
My second attempt at an overnight hike on the FLT. My first attempt had not gone as I had planned and I wanted to redeem the overnight hike. This hike would take me up Balsam Lake Mountain and over the highest point on the FLT, 3660 feet. My camp destination would be Beaver Meadow Lean-to a little north of Alder Lake. The weather was perfect, highs in the low 70s and an overnight low in the low 40s. I also got a bonus side trip to Balsam Lake Mountain fire tower complete with incredible views.