View Full Version : Sherrill, Balsam (not a 100 highest)
03-11-2006, 06:11 PM
Rockysummit and I hiked from the Rt 42 parking area up the NW ridge. About 3/4 up we decided to continue on to Balsam for a HH. After summitting, picture taking, and so forth to celebrate our accomplishment, we headed over to Sherrill, post holing occasionaly, found the canister and off to the SE to a great viewpoint.We returned down the SW ridge, staying in the middle until we bottomed out( opposite of summitting) at the PA. We congradulated (sp) ourselves for staying out of the drainage the whole day!
We barebooted the entire trip with only occasional postholing. With the warm temps, snowshoes might be an consideration for the higher elvs., as the hardpack was softening as the day progressed.
Checking Marks list, I discovered Balsam isn't an HH, and why. Oh well, still a beautiful day to be out, and this route made an interesting loop.
03-12-2006, 07:20 PM
BUMMER! NOT on the list? I thought I was well on my way with 38 peaks! Oh well I guess back to only 63 left.
03-13-2006, 03:18 PM
Sounds like a nice hike. I have never been to that southeast view on Sherrill. I will have to check it out. I see a couple of places where the contour lines get really dense over there. That is often a good predictor of rock ledge views, and sometimes it is just frustrating.
Sorry about the list implications. BTW there are 102 peaks on the HH list. Balsam is one of those Rodney Dangerfield mountains, it gets no respect. But then not everything that It is worth climbing is on a list. Maybe we could also have a Trailwrights (http://home.earthlink.net/~ellozy/trailwrights.html) style list for the Catskills, using their 100' prominence criteria. There would be two additional 3500' peaks (E Rusk and S Twin), and a total of 141 that are 3000' or above. This Balsam and its (Deep Notch) neighbor to the west would be on the 100' criteria list. Of the making of lists there could be no end. Perhaps its better to keep these summits listless and quiet for now.
It is also interesting that on the 1903 Phoenicia quad (http://docs.unh.edu/NY/phoc03ne.jpg) Balsam was thought to be higher at 3565' while Mt Sherrill was 3395' and unnamed. Maybe the earlier surveyor got a bad triangulation from Evergreen which was also shown higher at 3531' on the 1903 map (before its Dangerfield demotion). The current elevations and contours are from the 1960 Lexington and West Kill USGS quads. Sherrill was still unnamed in 1960 until a later reprint. Perhaps Mt. Sherrill also has a Dangerfield complex. It even got left off the initial Catskill 3500 list of 33 peaks: Sherrill, Friday, and Leavitt (SW Hunter) were overlooked as they were unnamed on the USGS maps, and Dry Brook Ridge was on the list at 3510', based upon the 1904 Margaretville quad. Some of the 3500 Club history (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catskill_Mountain_3500_Club) is on Wikipedia.
The old maps are useful for locating old roads and place names which might not be shown on the current maps. The old maps are housed on the University of New Hampshire website: New York index (http://docs.unh.edu/nhtopos/NewYorkList.htm). If these old maps appear too small to view in your browser, there two different methods to resize the map posted here on VFTT (http://www.viewsfromthetop.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6425).
03-13-2006, 06:46 PM
Mark, checking out the map some years ago and those tight contour lines, is exactly how I was lucky enough to find that ledge. It has an angle of view that is quite unique. One of my favs. I also know what you're talking about when it comes to checking out the old maps and guide books, too bad my wife doesn't. I have to hear about all my old junk every time I buy new maps and books. I can't complain though, I take off hiking every weekend.
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