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View Full Version : DEC: Avoid Hiking High Peaks in Mud Season



jquackenbush
05-10-2004, 11:20 AM
Check this news release from the Region 5 NYS DEC

here (http://www.dec.state.ny.us/website/press/pressrel/2004/200439.html)

Do any of you voluntarily avoid hiking the High Peak Trails and "Trail-less" above 3000' this time of year? Would you postpone hikes in the referenced sensitive areas and follow the recommended alternative hikes? It's my understanding there are trail hiking restrictions in other mountain ranges in the northeast during 'mud season'. It seems to me there is always mud holes in the warm season in the High Peaks; would an outright seasonal hiking ban on the most sensitive trails, enforced by DEC, make any sense?

mavs00
05-10-2004, 01:09 PM
Here goes.

I view this as a standard DEC warning that caution and common sense must be used when determining where to hike.

Frankly, I've hiked above 3000 with the warning in place just about every year. Often I've found trail conditions totally mid-summer BONE DRY during "mud-season". In fact, good arguements could be made that that Sewards are always in "mud season" and to be avoided at all times except mid winter.

Truth is, DEC folks are not on every trail, every day determining at which scientific point trails are ready for use again.

I will (and do) use trail descriptions on here as a much more reliable gauge on whether my hiking will 1) do undo damage. or 2) not be fun due to the slog fest conditions faced.

Seems much more common sensical approach than just blindly following a blanket DEC alert that is anually based on typical conditions rather than actual conditions.

jbrown
05-10-2004, 01:20 PM
I fully agree with mavs00.

I won't repeat everything he said, but just add that I hate to hike in mud. I'll usually avoid hiking in "mud season" for that reason, well, that and blackflies. There's my vountary avoidance.

stoopid
05-10-2004, 03:06 PM
Originally posted by jbrown
I fully agree with mavs00.

I won't repeat everything he said, but just add that I hate to hike in mud. I'll usually avoid hiking in "mud season" for that reason, well, that and blackflies. There's my vountary avoidance.

I'm in agreement with the full agree :D

I will, however, be hiking in the high peaks this weekend as the reports coming back indicate the trails were starting to be passible over this past weekend, and with the warmer weather this week they could be ideal next weekend (minus the likely invasion of the critters with wings).

Pete_Hickey
05-10-2004, 07:01 PM
I'm just back from doing some trail maintenence on the Dix-Round Pond trail.
There was very little mud, HOWEVER, IT IS NOT THE MUD WHICH CAUSES THE DAMAGE.

The trail from the slide to the junction of the Hunters pass trail was very fragile, yet there was no mud.

This time of year, there is frequent freeze/thaw cycles, and the soil is very loose. On steep sections, each step tears out much more soil than later in the season. Larger rocks are still loose, and will be removed with traffic.

I took some photos of soil mixed with crystals of ice, with the express purpose of posting them in this forum. Unfortunatley, I'm not a good photographer, and it just looks like a picture of dirt.

Just remember.... at least in the adirondacks, it isn't the mud that causes damage in 'mud season'

jquackenbush
05-21-2004, 12:18 PM
I appreciate the responses and the voting. I trust the DEC will make proper decisions regarding management of the High Peaks. Also, there is ongoing impressive trail maintenance efforts which presumably will slow degradation of trails from increased use by the hiking public.

stoopid
05-24-2004, 09:49 AM
Originally posted by Pete_Hickey
I'm just back from doing some trail maintenence on the Dix-Round Pond trail.
There was very little mud, HOWEVER, IT IS NOT THE MUD WHICH CAUSES THE DAMAGE.

The trail from the slide to the junction of the Hunters pass trail was very fragile, yet there was no mud.

This time of year, there is frequent freeze/thaw cycles, and the soil is very loose. On steep sections, each step tears out much more soil than later in the season. Larger rocks are still loose, and will be removed with traffic.

I took some photos of soil mixed with crystals of ice, with the express purpose of posting them in this forum. Unfortunatley, I'm not a good photographer, and it just looks like a picture of dirt.

Just remember.... at least in the adirondacks, it isn't the mud that causes damage in 'mud season'

Great point.

Taking it a step further, no hiking should be allowed AT ALL during the early summer /late spring season if this is true.