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Thread: Russell Pond, with unusual views of Thornton Gap

  1. #1
    Senior Member Mohamed Ellozy's Avatar
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    Russell Pond, with unusual views of Thornton Gap

    I often walk to Russell Pond when I do not want to do a real hike but still want something more challenging than a walk along Rt. 175. The round trip (from the lower Tripoli Road gate) is about 8 miles, with about 1,000 feet of elevation gain.

    Just before the height of land there is an outlook, with an unusual view of Thornton Gap with a very prominent ridge (I assume that it is Breadtray Ridge) on Mt. Osceola. I took my new camera with me today on my walk, and took a few pictures.

    The blackberries are in bloom, it seems that we will have an excellent harvest come August!
    Last edited by Mohamed Ellozy; 07-20-2009 at 04:25 PM.

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    Senior Member 1HappyHiker's Avatar
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    Mohamed, thanks for posting this report.

    I’ve never hiked the Russell Pond Road. However, I’ve been tempted to do so during mud-season. Also, I’ve contemplated doing it as a XC-ski trip. Now that you’ve confirmed that there is a view, I’m sure that I’ll do this trek either this winter, or next mud-season. I think I can see on GoogleEarth the viewpoint from which you took your photos.

    I’ve got a few questions/comments as follows:

    1) Do you know if there is a place to park on Access Road to use the northern end of Russell Pond Road (in other words, approach Russell Pond from the north, rather from the south)?

    2) Regarding the Breadtray Ridge, I just read a few weeks ago about the Breadtray Trail (abandoned long ago) which used the Breadtray Ridge/Basin as an approach to Mt. Osceola.

    3) In your photo labeled as “Thornton gap from Russell Pond Road #3”, I presume those are bugs of some sort that show up in the sky, and not UFOs!
    Last edited by 1HappyHiker; 06-23-2009 at 08:16 PM. Reason: Wording correction

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1HappyHiker View Post
    3) In your photo labeled as “Thornton gap from Russell Pond Road #3”, I presume those are bugs of some sort that show up in the sky, and not UFOs!
    Tripoli Road is where Barney and Betty Hill woke up in the 1960s after their two-day abduction by aliens, right?

  4. #4
    Senior Member Mohamed Ellozy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1HappyHiker View Post
    1) Do you know if there is a place to park on Access Road to use the northern end of Russell Pond Road (in other words, approach Russell Pond from the north, rather from the south).
    John,

    Ask Steve Smith, he did Russell Pond from the Access Road in winter. I seem to remember a small parking area at the end of the road.

  5. #5
    Senior Member TDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Dasypodidae View Post
    Tripoli Road is where Barney and Betty Hill woke up in the 1960s after their two-day abduction by aliens, right?
    Was that the couple that supposedly got "picked up" outta Thornton Gore? (Mill Brook Rd. area)

    Interesting look at Thornton Gap, Mohammed.
    Last edited by TDawg; 06-24-2009 at 10:41 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Mohamed Ellozy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mohamed Ellozy View Post
    Ask Steve Smith, he did Russell Pond from the Access Road in winter. I seem to remember a small parking area at the end of the road.
    Today I explored getting to Russell Pond from Access Road (actually its name is now Cox Farm Road).


    I have put the GPS track, and some waypoints, on Wikiloc.

    The snowmobile trail to the pond starts where the power lines from the substation cross the road, almost exactly where a side road goes up at a very acute angle (do not follow the road!)



    Instead follow the grassy snowmobile trail that ascends between two sets of power lines.


    Zooming in


    There is probably enough room to park on the side of the road.


    or else you can park at the parking area at the end of the road, about 0.3 miles from the start of the trail


    Once on the trail it is pretty uneventful, leading to the pond at the outlet, crossing the outlet on a bridge, and going along the south side of the pond to the height of land. Around two miles and about 800 feet of elevation gain.

    From the excellent state of the bridges and the signs it is obvious that this is a currently maintained snowmobile trail. There is a clear foot tread, so it gets some foot traffic. It certainly is a convenient way of getting to the pond on foot if you live in the immediate vicinity.

    I explored it because I love exploring, having done so once it is unlikely that I will return.
    Last edited by Mohamed Ellozy; 07-20-2009 at 04:11 PM. Reason: Spelling, darn it!

  7. #7
    Senior Member 1HappyHiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mohamed Ellozy View Post
    Today I explored getting to Russell Pond from Access Road (actually its name is now Cox Farm Road).
    Mohamed . . . thank you for the very complete follow-up investigation on the alternative approach to Russell Pond. As the saying goes, “A picture is worth a 1,000 words”. The photos you posted are most helpful and saved many words of explanation.

    I frequently have some time-constraints. And so, I’m always on the look-out for hikes that are not only close to home, but also are short and different. This will be one that I’ll definitely add to my list.

  8. #8
    Member banjolady's Avatar
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    as a lake bagger, russell pond is at the top of my list for the whites--the water is usually warmer than most other natural areas. we stayed at broken branch last year and did a number of explorations around tripoli rd. very nice.
    i also really love your site and info about the presi traverses and ways up the peaks--thanks so much!!
    susan and the wolves
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/harrimanhike/
    the most dog friendly hiking group in greater metro NY

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