We met at the K-mart lot on the Shelburne Road in South Burlington at 7:15 am, took two cars across the pond to Keene Valley with one stop at the Stewart’s in Port Henry. And did we ever luck out. We were the last two vehicles that could have possibly fit into The Garden parking lot. Phil was actually tilted up on his side a bit, in a snow bank and Mark was a little bit in the parking space of a DEC ranger. But would they really visit this time of year? We hoped not.
Headed out at approx. 9:30 am. The trail was well packed down at the start then we were breaking trail probably 2/3 of the way on the ascent. But while we had snowshoes, they were not necessary.
Lost the trail about half a dozen times mostly in stream areas but it’s always so fun to lose and find, isn’t it??!! Hit the summit around 12:45. The only other humans we saw the entire day, with the exception of the lot, hit the summit moments after we did…a couple of us heard voices and good to know they were not in our heads but belonged to living, breathing folks!! Also spotted five hikers on top of Cascade. Beyond that peak, our view was blocked by near zero visibility. Toasted with Tim’s ever-present wine, then headed down, taking bets, in 15-minute increments, how long ’til we hit the lot. (Mark and I split the difference at 3:08 pm.), and our vehicles were there and in tact upon return to the lot! WooHoo for small wonders!
All in all, this is a beautiful trail, with constantly changing landscapes: from wet to wooded to open with beautiful trees and shrubbery. Highly recommend! And then of course before heading back to the Greens, we stopped at the Noonmark for eats! Sandwiches, burgers and of course pie! Mark said the chowder was excellent! Back at K-mart at 6:30 pm. A super day all the way around!
Trip Leader: Robynn Albert
Participants: Phil Hazen, Tim Welsh, Mark McLane
Photo Credit: Phil and Tim