Trail Conditions Forum

Mud? Ice? High water at stream crossings?

This is the place to let the trail community know what you encountered, where and when (be as precise as possible). Suggestion: Make the trail or park name your subject.

To report serious trail problems that need Trail Conference attention, including illegal trail use issues, visit our Contact Us page. Problems reported through our Contact Us page get to the maintainers fast and reliably. Problems reported on the forum below may help fellow trail users avoid problem areas until they get fixed, but not all maintainers read this regularly.


ron6788's picture

Last time up to Harriman, came upon two snakes.  That was 5/7 and, on 5/3, a person I was with reported seeing a big one.  All three were blacks and all were on different woods roads.  A noteworthy thing about one of the encounters.  I came pretty close before seeing it which made it really upset.  Instead of running off into the brush, like they normally would, it started shaking its tail (like a rattler would), then turned and faced me and wouldn't move.  I had to turn around. Just a heads up to watch where you're stepping.
mikej165's picture

Not a trail condition report, but instead a thank you - a big thank you - to the trail maintainer(s) and volunteers who built the bridge spanning the Cascade of Slid. My wife and I happened upon it yesterday while hiking down Stony Brook and up Halfway Mountain. I'd never heard of it before, and it's such an innocuous thing on the map - just a dot and a strange name, Cascade of Slid - but it was barely out of our way, so my wife and I said, What the heck, let's see what it is. We were rewarded for the slight detour with what is the the most captivating scene we've yet encountered in Harriman.   While standing there mid-span on what appeared to be freshly-hammered-in planks, enjoying the cascade of water flowing beneath my feet, it occured to me that a bunch of people had schlepped lot of wood and tools over hill and dale for at least a mile to that spot so that I and others could enjoy the spectacle.   Bravo, builders!  
CanadianRoots's picture

Just wanted to make everyone aware, there was a brush fire actively burning on the North Side of Pine Meadow Lake in Harriman State Park on Sunday 4/12/15. The Park office was notifed and advised at the time of our call that they were aware of the situation. The Park did not appear to be actively fighting the fire, but more than likely letting it burn the underbrush on that side of the lake. There are 2 illegal campsites that I know of in that are just east of the old CCC pumphouse. It appeared to have burned quite a bit of area but also seemed to be extinguishing itself at the time, as it seemd to be burning itself into a corner at lakeside.
slauffer's picture

I am thinking of hiking the Long Path near Basha Kill this Saturday, April 4. Anywhere within sections 11 and 12 , but I am wondering about conditions with spring snow melt. If it only requires occasional road walking, that is not so bad. I am also wondering about ice and snow conditions in the higher elevations. Can anyone tell me what to expect? Thanks.
garate's picture

I walked those two sections on 22 and 28 March. Still had enough snow in almost all the way, but it was frozen and you could walk well (in some areas is suitable microspikes). However, section 12 snow was pretty soft, and occasionally you sink. Also areas with a little water. After these days of high temperature and rainfall, it is possible that the snow that remains is still softer. I am following the Long Path north. This weekend I hope to walk sections 14 and 15. I have a car. If you also have a car and at some point we agree, we could organize for connecting the start and end of a section . Sorry for my bad English. You may have guessed that I am translating with google.
mikej165's picture

Yesterday afternoon my wife and I hiked out and back from the parking lot at the Bear Mountain Inn.  We took the 1777E trail south, turned west on Doodletown road, followed it to the S-BM junction and then returned. The trails were virtually snow-free. There was mud in spots, as you would expect, but certainly nothing that wasn't easily avoided. Fairly close to the trail head, we spotted a group of 8 deer grazing. Along Doodletown Road we also saw what appeared to be bear paw marks in the mud.
Michael K7's picture

In the latest Trail Walker there is a picture of two guys building a bridge, and the caption says it is above the Cascade of Slid. Is this bridge completed? Can you hike the Kakiat trail to this bridge and cross the water? I did not see any announcement about this on the TC website, which seems odd.
banjolady's picture

the new bridge is above the cascades, making it possible to cross the stream on the orange HTS trail. the bridge which takes the kakiat trail across the stream is still out as of last week. not sure of any rebuilding plans but it is not possible to plan a hike crossing that stream right now. hurricane irene caused destruction of a number of bridges in the area. most have been rebuilt but not that one on the kakiat.
johnm's picture

As Banjolady reported, the Kakiat bridge remains missing, and crossing without it is essentially impossible (and highly discouraged).  The Trail Conference has not been able to obtain permission from the park to replace this bridge.  The desire is to determine a different location that would reduce the probability of a bridge being again flooded out. To  date, though there has been some searching, no such location has been determined.  At this point there is no time frame for replacement, or assurance that it will be replaced.  Thus, for all intents except for a short in and out hike, the Kakiat Trail from 7-Lakes Drive southeast to the former bridge site is currently useless. 
Daniel Chazin's picture

The new bridge across Pine Meadow Brook was recently constructed by volunteers and is open for use by the hiking public.
banjolady's picture

we did an arden loop from elk pen today fri 3/20. started around 10am going up the AT. it was hard packed snow going up. traction aids necessary, snowshoes not necessary at that time. we went on the ASB/LP  up to the lichen and then the RD, back on the dunning and island pond rd, then out on the ASB.  plenty of bare rock on the ridges of lichen and RD. pretty easy going on the dunning. it started snowing around noontime. on island pond road the snow was pretty deep still but not terrible.  we got on the asb which was snowy but manageable until we got to the steep part where the trail gets very narrow going along the edge of the cliff. by that point the snow had covered up the very icy conditions on that section of trail. full crampons and an ice axe would have been helpful.  the rest of the way down the ASB was very slippery, ice under snow and the snow was so sticky that it balled up and rendered microspikes rather ineffective. I strongly suggest that hikers avoid the ASB between island pond Rd and the elk pen until spring REALLY arrives—it is very dangerous right now. conditions are expected to moderate in the next few days so it could all change soon but be careful out there!!  
joegig's picture

I just found out that I'll have some free time the weekend before easter (April2nd to 5th).  I wanted to attempt to cover some ground on the AT.  Has anyone been up there that can say if they think the trail will be passable without snowshoes in 2 weeks?  If not, I might have to look for another place to go further south.   Thanks
banjolady's picture

snow is melting fast. we might get another couple inches tomorrow but i would bet that snowshoes wont be necessary. this week the trails are wet and sometimes icy but definitely passable without snowshoes. bring gaiters and waterproof boots though
joegig's picture

great,thanks for the update!  here on long island, at sea level, the trails are all covered in about 3 inches of ice.  I was thinking about postponing it but it sounds like I might not have to pass on my trip after all.  
sueeilers's picture

The conditions required snowshoes throughout our 4-mile hike up the Seven Hills and via the Pine Meadow Road to the red ski trail.The snow was very soft so going was difficult because we kept slipping off the packed area into the softer sides. Fear of twisting ankles and knees made us use caution and go much slower than would otherwise have been the case.
Jmyhall's picture

Hello, I am thinking of taking some friends on the Bonticou Crag hike next weekend, the 21st, I know that it is a week away, but was wondering anyone had some thoughts on what the conditions might be.  We have had a lot of snow this year and want to make sure it is safe to climb up the rock scramble.  Any advise would be appreciated.  Thanks Jim
yankeepride's picture

Does anyone have any updated info on what this recent warm streak has left us with on the Long Path? I'm looking at doing section 5 on Saturday if it doesn't rain, and wanted to know if it's just a slushy mess, or something else I can work around with boots, snowshoes, or microspikes.
Purple Octopus's picture

Did the Silvermine Lake Loop yesterday.  Conditions were excellent, with the trail very packed down, 10-18 inch base.  We wore the spikes but left the snowshoes in the car. All went well until we were on the way back, opposite shore of the lake, following Silvermine Road.  The packed down trail was right next to the shoreline, then it turned left and went to the water's edge.  And that was it.  Ahead, Silvermine Road from the middle of the lakeshore all the way to 7 Lakes Drive, was untouched. We post holed that entire distance with snow coming up to our knees before emerging onto 7 Lakes Drive. Lesson learned - if you do have snowshoes, just wear them.  Even if the trail is packed down, it's still fine to walk it in snowshoes.  And you'll be prepared if suddenly, you actually need them.
carterman81's picture

Hey everyone! I'm suppose to co lead a hike this weekend and we were planning on doing some hiking in Harriman. Our plan was to start from the Tuxedo train station and take the Ramapo Dunderberg Trail to Tuxedo-Mt Ivy to a Blue Disk. Anyone know the trail conditions in this area. Thanks so much!
Daniel Chazin's picture

I was in Harriman yesterday.  There is currently about a foot of snow on the ground.  Some trails are well packed and can easily be negotiated without snowshoes, but others may not be packed, and snowshoes may be necessary.  Also, traction aids (such as MicroSpikes) are highly recommended, especially for steep climbs and descents, such as the Blue Disc Trail up to the top of Almost Perpendicular. Of course, a storm is predicted for Sunday, which may bring ice and/or rain to the area.  This will change the conditions significantly.