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Thread: Lake Placid SOA trail access lost

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Lake Placid SOA trail access lost

    Based on a conversation today with the current president of the Lake Placid Shore Owners Association (SOA), the access from Chipmunk Lane is no longer permitted. This access has been described in the three previous (11th, 12th, and 13th) editions of the ADK High Peaks Guide, but will of necessity be dropped in the upcoming 14th edition. This ruling applies to all access along the entire west shoreline whether one parks on Chipmunk Lane or elsewhere. The signs on this section have always said, "...At the owner's pleasiure and the user's risk." Now for various reasons (that I won't list so as not to blame any particular user group) the owner is no longer "pleased."

    This now means that it is no longer legal to descend McKenzie via the Bartlett Pond Trail, unless one bushwhacks to avoid the private land. Furthermore, the only legal approach to or from Loch Bonnie is via the trail that reaches the lakeshore on a parcel of state land just south of Undercliff. One may still land at the north end of Lake Placid to access Eagle Eyrie as that is all state land. All other trails remain unaffected.

    The DEC is aware of this change. Even before this loss of access, preliminary work on the McKenzie Mt. Wilderness Area UMP has included a parking area on Whiteface Inn Lane and a new access route to the Two Brooks Trail via state land or foot trail easements on private land well away from the lake. Whether this loss of access will accelerate implementation of the new route remains to be seen.

  2. #2
    Senior Member PA Ridgerunner's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update, Tony. Disappointing.
    Steve

    Rule #6: Don't take yourself so G.D. seriously. There are no other rules. - Zander

  3. #3
    Senior Member bigmoose's Avatar
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    It did feel weird traipsing through lakefront lawns en route to the Two Brooks Trail.
    A new DEC trail avoiding driveways and boathouses would be welcome.
    Last edited by bigmoose; 08-02-2011 at 07:11 PM. Reason: typo

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    Senior Member Puma concolor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigmoose View Post
    It did feel weird traipsing through lakefront lawns en route to the Two Brooks Trail.
    Totally agree. I hiked Moose a few years ago and had the same thought even though it was at an off-time of year where no one was really around. If I'm a property owner hanging out on my undoubtedly expensive property during the summer, about the last thing I want is a parade of hikers walking across my front lawn on a Saturday afternoon. I'm sure the traffic has picked way up since the 100 Highest thing came into vogue. IMO, any negotiation to regain access should exclude the summer months. Just my two cents.

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    Moderator Peakbagr's Avatar
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    While it would be great to reopen this route to the peaks, might be wishful thinking on our parts. If you're the homeowners what's the incentive to make you want to have strangers walking thru your back yard, asking for water, or to borrow your phone?
    "The fact that going off the deep end appears
    to be a requisite to doing anything of consequence
    in this life has not escaped me." Jim Harrison

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    Senior Member TCD's Avatar
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    State recreation easement accompanied by tax relief?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peakbagr View Post
    If you're the homeowners what's the incentive to make you want to have strangers walking thru your back yard, asking for water, or to borrow your phone?
    Are hikers in that area really that bad? I enjoyed Moose and McKenzie and liked returning via the shoreline. It was nice seeing houses but I never felt the urge to bother homeowners. I'd assume most doing those mountains are fairly serious about hiking and the etiquette of private property. Or am I being completely naive?

    I'd like to know exactly what happened to change the status quo.

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    Senior Member Raymond's Avatar
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    Glad we climbed ’em in 2005, when I first read in Adirondack Explorer about the trails being reopened.

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    Member RTSpoons's Avatar
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    Boathouses and lawns

    Must agree walking in someones backyard makes one feel uneasy. It would be nice if a trail would be develop to avoid contact with these homeowners. It is understandable that someone does not want groups of people walking across their lawns or driveways.

    Thanks for the post.

    Quote Originally Posted by bigmoose View Post
    It did feel weird traipsing through lakefront lawns en route to the Two Brooks Trail.
    A new DEC trail avoiding driveways and boathouses would be welcome.
    Of course we weren't lost. We were merely where we shouldn't have been, without knowing where that was.

    T. Morris Longstreth

  10. #10
    Moderator Peakbagr's Avatar
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    "Are hikers in that area really that bad? I enjoyed Moose and McKenzie and liked returning via the shoreline. It was nice seeing houses but I never felt the urge to bother homeowners. I'd assume most doing those mountains are fairly serious about hiking and the etiquette of private property. Or am I being completely naive?
    I'd like to know exactly what happened to change the status quo."


    I have no idea, but suspect it was an accumulation of incidents. In the times I've hiked through there, I've always wondered why the property owners haven't objected before to people walking close by their propery at any time of day. Until the trail was was remarked, I know of hikers who lost the trail and then 'bushwhacked', following their own paths until getting back on the trail or nearing the T/H.

    Hiker's are no different than other segment of the population. There are considerate ones, and ones who misbehave on the SOA trails and elsewhere. If only 1 or 2 out of every hundred is inconsiderate, that's a real PITA for the property owners repeatedly exposed to it.
    Though I'm sorry to see the access closed, I'm amazed it's remained open as long as it has been.
    "The fact that going off the deep end appears
    to be a requisite to doing anything of consequence
    in this life has not escaped me." Jim Harrison

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    Here are some answers to questions posted on this and other forums. 1) Don't count on gaining individual permission to use this approach as there are multiple landowners involved and the SOA would not give any "blanket" permission. 2) The reason for the closure was likely a combination of increased use due to the more detailed description in the 13th Edition of the High Peaks Guide, the privately published guidebook, and the Adirondack Explorer article a few years back. Also cited were users other than hikers who tend to travel at greater than walking speed. 3) The approach to McKenzie Mt. from Whiteface Inn Lane is still open. Once on Moose Mt., however, one must either backtrack, descend the Two Brook Trail to the brook and then bushwhack back on state land, or descend past Loch Bonnie to the piece of state land on the Lake Placid shoreline. 4) It is not possible to imagine that these landowners would ever grant a public easement to the DEC like the AMR easement. There is also no point in "appealing" this decision to the SOA.
    In my view, the only solution is rapid implementation of the DEC's proposed access on state land.

  12. #12
    Moderator Peakbagr's Avatar
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    Thanks, Tony. Were you alluding to mountain bikers, trail runners, or motorized travel ?
    "The fact that going off the deep end appears
    to be a requisite to doing anything of consequence
    in this life has not escaped me." Jim Harrison

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