Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

McKenzie Mountain Wilderness SOA trails question.

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • McKenzie Mountain Wilderness SOA trails question.

    Thanks to Trail Boss' expertise I have Brouter routes converted to .gpx files of the SOA trails leading from McKenzie and Moose Mtns. to Lake Placid. However, when I was on Moose in October I saw no evidence of the two trails that show as heading down towards Lake Placid. (Admittedly, I didn't look very hard). The one from McKenzie to LP via Bartlett I know well.
    I plan on hiking McK and Moose from the Jackrabbit trail and instead of backtracking from Moose to Mck we might prefer dropping down directly from Moose via the trail that goes by Loch Bonnie). I took this trail about 12 years ago then crossed over from Loch Bonnie to another trail (Twin Brooks I believe) My concern is whether or not the trail is maintained and/or easy to follow, especially with a foot of snow hiding it and the (white!) markers.

    Any beta about the trail would be greatly appreciated. tgoodwin
    Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

  • #2
    By two trails do you mean the one that leads south off Moose back to the Two Brooks Trail and the other that heads southeast past Loch Bonnie to LP/Undercliff? Those trails are about 100-150 feet east of the summit of Moose (the spot where the sign says <---- McKenzie Summit 3.1). Hard to miss as there is ample signage. The trail south back to the Two Brooks Trail appears to be the most direct route. If you take the trail toward Undercliff you'll still have over two miles back to the start of the Jackrabbit trail once you reach LP. One other consideration... as I recall the area around Loch Bonnie was hit with some major blowdown. You'll see the edge of it if you choose to head south off Moose but I'm not sure how far it extends toward Loch Bonnie. Perhaps Loch Bonnie isn't affected at all but I would investigate.


    Comment


    • #3
      I'm primarily interested in this trail:
      http://brouter.de/brouter-web/#zoom=...format=geojson
      Note that there is a suspiciously straight section in the depiction of that trail.

      However, from the trail to Undercliff there is a crossover trail (not shown on map) at Loch Bonnie to the one linked to above.
      Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        It is pretty straight. Here's my tracklog. You are welcome to it if you want me to clean it up and send it to you.



        The connector trail from Loch Bonnie to that trail is somewhere around that bump just southwest of Loch Bonnie. That is the area with the significant blowdown. I saw no evidence whatsoever of the connector trail when I was through there in 2015 but did see giant tangles of trees.

        Comment


        • CatskillKev
          CatskillKev commented
          Editing a comment
          Tracklogs are bad.

        • Makwa
          Makwa commented
          Editing a comment
          If you mean that in a slangy, colloquial way then I agree. Tracklogs are bad, man!

        • CatskillKev
          CatskillKev commented
          Editing a comment
          There is nothing good about a good tracklog. How's that?

      • #5
        FWIW, that section also appears straight in Strava Heatmap: https://labs.strava.com/heatmap/#15.....33737/hot/all

        I haven't revised OSM's trails in that area, using the Heatmap as a reference. You can see OSM's trails are slightly different from Strava (but close enough for now).
        Looking for Views!

        Comment


        • #6
          The two trails split just off the summit of Moose. The crossover between the Two Brooks Trail and Loch Bonnie has been abandoned due to the heavy blowdown. Neither trail has received much maintenance in the past few years. There are a fair number of markers, but with a few feet of snow there will not likely be much evidence of the trail except for the markers. The track log will thus be very helpful in staying on course.

          Comment


          • #7
            Originally posted by Trail Boss View Post
            FWIW, that section also appears straight in Strava Heatmap: https://labs.strava.com/heatmap/#15.....33737/hot/all

            I haven't revised OSM's trails in that area, using the Heatmap as a reference. You can see OSM's trails are slightly different from Strava (but close enough for now).
            Strava indicates that the Two Brooks trail off of Moose gets less traffic than the trail off of McK. past Bartlett Pond. The trail between McK and Moose appears very lightly traveled but in non-winter conditions it was always readily discernible. Under a foot of snow all bets are off in open woods.

            Thanks all!
            Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

            Comment


            • #8
              I hiked your proposed route going counter-clockwise about 10 days ago. As you noted trail markers exist and are at times abundant but they do blend well into the snow covered trees they're nailed to. When I went I had to break trail and found the trail bed to swing between easy to follow and then completely disappear - at times I thought I was bushwhacking only then to find another marker again. There's still abundant blow down after crossing Twin Brooks and then also between Moose and McK - some you just have to climb through, some you can circumvent - here a deeper snowpack might be beneficial (I had at the time only half a foot). I saw plenty of animal tracks and they had an uncanny way of staying on track.

              Once I got to McK it was well tracked though on the steep west side there was a lot of ice and I had to be careful in my (aging) microspikes (here I saw the only folks that day and they were in more aggressive traction).

              Overall a great hike - I was glad I went counter clockwise using the precious daylight for route finding in the first part of the loop.

              The ridge to McKenzie from Moose
              Click image for larger version

Name:	Moose.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	293.6 KB
ID:	482530
              Last edited by OnAClearDay; 12-19-2017, 08:14 PM.

              Comment


              • #9
                CCW huh? Early in the day route finding at the price of late in the day descending steep ice. Always something to think about!
                Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

                Comment


                • #10
                  Come to think about it, why not use the SOA trails exclusively and avoid the ice-fest going up the S side of McKenzie altogether? Thinking about it.
                  Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    Originally posted by Neil View Post
                    Come to think about it, why not use the SOA trails exclusively and avoid the ice-fest going up the S side of McKenzie altogether? Thinking about it.
                    Well, yeah, if you want to get all practical about it! I would think using the SOA trail to the col between Moose and McKenzie and then hitting both peaks from there with return by the same route would be the easiest way.

                    Comment


                    • #12
                      Originally posted by Gregory Karl View Post

                      Well, yeah, if you want to get all practical about it! I would think using the SOA trail to the col between Moose and McKenzie and then hitting both peaks from there with return by the same route would be the easiest way.
                      Depending on how much snow there is and how easy/difficult trail finding is there is always the option of going down directly from Moose instead of backtracking.
                      Project-100: 100 peaks, one winter. https://project100singlewinter.wordpress.com/

                      Comment


                      • #13
                        Does anyone know about Richard Hayes Phillips and if he is still maintaining these trails? In his Guide to the SOA Trails, published in 2007, he said that he was going to reduce his trail maintenance and would like some assistance.
                        Mike

                        ADK 46r #8003; 6W
                        2nd round: 16
                        SL6r #596
                        Catskill 3500 21/39; 11W

                        Comment


                        • #14
                          Richard Phillips has done some maintenance since 2007 including some clean-up from the 2011 microburst, but he is now focused more on trail work for the Lake George Land Conservancy. Currently, the DEC does not consider the trails he reopened to be "official" trails, so no organized volunteer effort can be made to keep them open. The "mythical" UMP for the McKenzie Mt. Wilderness Area does envision making most of those trails official along with better parking on Whiteface Inn Lane plus a nearly all state land approach to the Two Brooks and Bartlett Pond trails, avoiding the private land along the lake. The Lake Trail, which is mostly on private land, will not become an official DEC trail. I'm not sure how the trails around the northwest and north end of the lake will be handled.

                          Comment


                          • #15
                            Originally posted by Neil View Post
                            Come to think about it, why not use the SOA trails exclusively and avoid the ice-fest going up the S side of McKenzie altogether? Thinking about it.
                            Neil, I would recommend this option, though I have not hiked Moose & McKenzie in Winter—I hiked them in August 2016. The SOA trail up McKenzie via Bartlett Pond is straightforward. Like OnAClearDay, there are a number of manageable blowdowns between Twin Brook and the summit of Moose, and as Makwa mentioned the crossover trail to Loch Bonnie was been wiped out by blowdown.

                            Comment

                            Working...
                            X