View Full Version : Bushwack from Echo Lake

09-20-2004, 10:11 PM
Has anyone tried to hit Indian Head or Twin Mountain from Echo Lake directly (without taking the long ciruitous EL/OL/DP trail)? On the topo map it is barely 2 miles. Nasty bushwhack or worthwhile effort?

09-21-2004, 06:33 AM
I buskwacked the Indian head Platekill col some time ago, woods are pretty open but it was muddy reedy in the col. I hear the upper elevations of Indian Head (at least from the north slope) are pretty thick.

09-21-2004, 06:35 AM
I was going to go this route last year when I did Indian head. But then decided to start from the North. Looking on the maps I think it is very doable and can be a nice loop this way to. My theory is go for it even if it is hard, it is still a great way to explore a trailess area.

09-21-2004, 09:16 AM
I was bushwhacking in the Plattekill Mountain/ Overlook area a bit over a week ago. This was precipitated by the fact that I realized I'd never been up the former peak in many years of hiking the Catskills. I toyed with bushwhacking down to Echo from Plattekill's summit but found that the brambles were unusually savage. I was admittedly in shorts, but I would not think the line off Indian Head would be much better. As to bushwhacking on Indian Head, I have done so. I think that a straight-line route would hit some well-nigh impassable cliffs and ledges (just think about the trail approach and what it runs along). Still, if you decide to do this at some point and want some company (ideally next year when the brambles have been flattened) I'd be game for it.


09-21-2004, 02:50 PM
Maybe we'll do some exploring without worrying about getting there. Agree that Indian Head Cliffs would be a challenge or outright foolish. Also may try Plattekill just for the record books. Any views?

09-21-2004, 03:20 PM
Originally posted by smh444
Also may try Plattekill just for the record books. Any views?

None. I found it rather uninteresting.

09-21-2004, 03:54 PM
Not wholly true. If you approach on the ridge that runs due N from the intersection of the Echo Lake spur, about 200 vertical feet from the summit is a very nice ledge that gives views over Overlook Mountain and Echo Lake. These are especially interesting as it's only from this perspective that you can see that Echo is situated in a true cirque, which geologist Bob Titus points out is very unusual, possibly even unique in the Catskills.

Just immediately below the true summit area is a delightful spot with three large boulders that look almost deliberately placed in a small hemlock grove. And I'm sure the winter views are wonderful. The descent to the E from the summit is probably not doable, at least direct. I worked my way down a very steep grade between ledges down about 200 vertical feet before being stymied by a cliff that did not have a workaround.

All in all, a fascinating area.

Mark Schaefer
09-21-2004, 07:55 PM
I have not gone from Echo Lake to either of the summits, but I have bushwhacked around Echo Lake a couple of times and the woods appear fairly open. I do agree with erd that you will encounter brambles and spring would be easier. I have bushwhacked down the south side of the Jimmy Dolan Notch several hundred feet of elevation, and it is fairly open. That would probably be good access point to reach Twin. The cliffs on Indian Head will be a problem and maybe the easiest route would be to stay on the Devil's Path around loop (the chin of the Indian Head) before starting to contour over to either Plattekill or Echo Lake.

I have been on Plattekill several times, and I agree that the view of Echo Lake from the south ridge makes this climb very worthwhile. Both of the ridge lines that lead down to the Overlook trail are good routes. The first time I climbed Plattekill I did a direct descent down the east face. The leaves were off the trees making route choice easier, but there are many ledges.

While in the area another viewpoint that is worth a visit is Codfish Point. It is just 0.1 mile off the Overlook trail on a yellow DEC trail. The junction is at a sharp bend in the Overlook Trail 0.6 miles southeast of the Devils Kitchen Lean-to. There is no trail junction sign but you should see a yellow disk at the junction. It has a very nice Hudson Valley view. If you walk down the quarry slag pile a bit there is a nice view of Overlook.

02-19-2007, 12:56 PM
This looks like a very doable hike.