12-24-2005, 05:46 PM
Our original plan was to go yesterday but a tired wife and a late start lead to the decision to switch our plans for today (some shopping and holiday errands) to yesterday and our Catskill hike to today. So we got a better start this morning but not too early. We didn't start hiking until 10am. Couldn't believe there were no other cars at Prediger Road. The register said someone had been in each of the last few days but the trail was kind of a mess. Some had snowshoed and some had walked in boots. The crust had been broken up but not completely and then refroze overnight. We smoothed it some as we climbed but smoothed it better later in the day when the temps climbed and the snow softened. The climb to Jimmy Dolan Notch was uneventful. We made good time considering Charlene hadn't been out on snowshoes yet this year and hadn't been out at all in a couple weeks. We climbed Twin first following snowshoe tracks. The trees were covered in ice and in spots the trail was covered in ice that had broken off trees. It was like walking on broken glass. A little later the trees would start dripping in the warmer temps. At one point it felt like it was raining. All during the day you could hear ice breaking off trees and crashing to the ground. Not much in the way of views due to low clouds from the lookouts on Twin. We had our lunch between the Twins. We backtracked to the notch and then climbed Indian Head. The trail had one set of posthole tracks which could have been worse had the warm weather not softened the snow. Broke a nice snowshoe track up Indian Head. Carried crampons but never even considered wearing them. Wore the snowshoes all day but we could use another storm to cover some of the rocks poking through. Never saw another person except Charlene and Dali the dog. Unfortunetly, the day wasn't quite perfect. Opened a nice Frostbite Ale at the car and turned on the Giants game. Well, a hike and beer is a pretty good day.