First hike of the 2019 season arrived with cool temperatures and mainly cloudy skies. It also arrived with lots of mud and wet patches. I started off with a 2.5 hour drive to the trailhead, and arrived just after the sun began to shine. The trail took me through two hollows and across a few streams. I entered a dark and chilly pine forest and descended across a patch of ice.
The trail wound its way past a nice picnic/rest area near Harwood Haven Campground before entering the campground. A long road-walk along NY 98 and then Kingsbury Hill Road followed. From there I made my way through mud and much on an old logging skid and then down past a house where dozens of chickens surrounded me.
After leaving the chickens behind I made my way to a very busy NY 16 and another road-walk. The walk along NY 16 was thankfully short and I arrived at Bear Creek Road. Finally I arrived at my turn around point on Bear Creek Road, took a few pictures, and made my way back.
Another early start and long drive to reach the trailhead. I pressed my luck and drove on fumes to reach one of the few 24-hour gas stations on the drive. Thick fog banks along the route made for a stressful drive. The sky finally began to lighten as I neared my destination. A few minutes from the trailhead I broke free of the fog to see it settled in the valley in front of me as the rising sun colored the sky.
I arrived at the trailhead a few minutes later and began a short walk through the woods. At Rushford Road I began a long five-mile road walk. After finally finishing the road walk I took a short break before heading on. Another short walk through the woods and I arrived at West Branch Road for another road-walk. A short “jog” off Stebbins Road gave a brief respite from the road-walking. I arrived at my turn-around and started back. A stop for lunch and a rest at a tent site off West Branch Road before heading back to Huyck Road and the long road-walk.
Finally back at the trailhead on Rushford Road I took a short break. A little over a mile back to my car and my mind began to play the “what-if” game; I wondered if I had left a map light on in my car and if the battery was dead. I arrived back at my car to find I had not left the light on and the batter was not dead. After changing and stowing my gear I headed back on the long drive home.