Recent Posts

  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   1 month 1 week ago
    Anybody know if camping on the AT in NJ is ok again ? I know it had been suspended. I'm not seeing closure list on the site. Was hoping to do a 2-3 night backpacker on NJ AT next week.
  • Reply to: Hiking with Dogs   1 month 1 week ago
    It's great to be able to share the outdoors with your pet. What's not so great is the growing issue (for many years now) of lazy owners that will bag their pets waste and then throw it into the woods or by the side of the trail rather than pack it out. Or leave it behind thinking "someone else will pick it up". Seems to me that a re-education campaign might be in order for the trail steward folks that like to discuss trail side ethics with hikers or the simpler "don't litter" philosophy that's been talked about for decades as I recall. If a choice (not that there is a good one here) has to be made to "bag the waste" and pack it out or let the pet do its "business" naturally and leave it behind, I'd vote for having the animal go off the trail, do its "business", and leave it behind to decompose naturally. The bagged poo doesn't help the environment and just contributes to litter on the trail.
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   1 month 3 weeks ago
    I want to thank you for the information and encouragement. Those are some luxurious accommodations along that new stretch of trail. Beautiful terrain as well. I actually did wind up packing six liters of water down Slide Mountain into the col. Not fun. Shouldn’t the guide warn first-timers that climbing is involved? Anyway, I made it. The spring at 5.0 was dry, but the one that crosses the trail over on the Cornell side of the col was flowing. I also found water just a little way into the new stretch of trail. So, things were not as dry as I had feared.
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   2 months 3 days ago

    I've never had any luck finding the supposed spring at mile 5.0, but the spring at mile 4.3 on the east side of Slide (just after going down the ladder-stairs, if you're heading northbound on the LP) almost always has water. I think I've seen it dry only once in 20 years. Fill up there!

    A little further, there's often a small flow of water that crosses the trail just before the climb up Cornell. I guess it would be around mile 5.5. Coordinates would be around 42.00255, -74.36723.

    At around 42.00971, -74.33396 there's a barely-visible unmarked path leading south from the trail, just before you cross a small rocky stream. This might be the seasonal stream mentioned at mile 0.85 of section 19. If the stream is dry at the trail crossing, you can sometimes find water by heading south on this path a very short distance. There's some good camping up there too.

    That's the last water I know of before the reliable pipe spring on the way down to Phoenicia.

    So yes, the trail from Wittenberg to Phoenicia is dry, but there is a fair amount of spectacular scenery and it would be a shame to miss it! I'd suggest camping between Slide & Cornell (only allowed in designated spots, but they'll probably be empty on Tuesday or Wednesday.) Hopefully camp close enough to one of the springs that you can fill up with a whole day's worth of water for the next day's hike. Bring some extra bottles or a water bladder. The next day, start as early as you can, when it's still cool. If you find more water, great, if not, you shouldn't have a problem making it to the next spring before evening. (The camping around there is not great though! Steep and buggy.)

    Good luck & enjoy!

  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   2 months 5 days ago
    I can't comment on the availability of water in this section, but I can say that this is one of the most beautiful sections of the Long Path in the Catskills and should not be missed. The initial ascent from Woodland Valley is on the Cornell-Wittenberg-Slide Trail, which is steep and eroded, but once you reach the new trail section, you'll be hiking on a well-graded trail constructed to the highest trail standards. I would think that you should be able to take along sufficient water for this section of the hike.
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   2 months 5 days ago
    I am about to do Sections 16, 17, 18, and 19 of the Long Path. In the trail description I notice that from the low spot between Slide and Cornell Mountains at 5.0 miles of Section 18, where it says there is a spring, to the pipe spring mentioned at 8.55 miles in Section 19, all of the water sources mentioned are characterized as intermittent. At 0.5 miles of Section 19, it mentions “a small stream that often has water.” At .85 miles, a “seasonal stream.” At 4.0 miles, a “seasonal spring.” I should be passing through there Tuesday or Wednesday. Can anyone advise me on what I might find in any of these places? If these intermittent sources are dry, I would have to hike 12 miles without water. Is it a tough stretch to do? Should I consider bailing out and walking Woodland Valley Road to Phoenicia?
  • Reply to: Hike Recommendations   2 months 1 week ago
    Not exactly a hike recommendation I'm looking for -- rather, I'm looking for an elevated overlook near Woodstock that I can drive to. I'm headed up to the Catskills from the city and want to find a spot where I can get a good look at Comet Neowise. Any ideas?
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   2 months 3 weeks ago
    Sigh... we used to have a vibrant trail conditions forum here on, before the great web redesign. It's unfortunate that these new forums have been made so difficult to use that the de-facto source for up-to-date info has fallen to Facebook, which has a history of privacy abuses and a lot of political baggage. Anyway, rant over, I hiked some of the Long Path last year and all of it some years back. Water availability changes with the weather, but if you have questions about specific sections I'm happy to offer what insight I have.
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   3 months 2 days ago
    The 1997 hard-copy edition of the Long Path Guide is outdated. The current, up-to-date version of the Guide is available online. There is no key to correlate the two documents. You should rely on the online version of the Guide. You can trust the trail descriptions in the 1997 hard-copy Guide only if you have compared them to the online version of the Guide and find that they are still accurate.
  • Reply to: Trail Conditions Forum   3 months 2 days ago
    I just got my copy of the Long Path Guide 1997 print edition. The section numbers and divisions seem different. I guess this is because the trail has changed in 23 years. Is there a key to these differences, IOW, something to translate? How do I know when I can trust the trail descriptions and when I can’t?

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