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  • Back to the Old School 46ers...

    For those that are interested, I've got some more pictures from my father (46er1248) scanned into the system. This time, pictures of the Indian Falls lean-to, Marcy Dam and Plateau lean-to.


    And now on to a question for people:

    My father can help elaborate on this, but he was telling me about a story of a guy who dissapeared one night from Plateau Lean-to, thought to have fallen into Panther Gorge. Apparently, his picture was posted all over, and every summer his brother would come and search the Panther Gorge area, although to my fathers knowledge, nothing was ever found. Has anyone ever heard of this?

    My father took THIS picture of a trip to Plateau, with a Ranger who had a report of someone finding some remains in the Panther Gorge area, and was backpacking in to check them out. Here is a picture of the Ranger on the day he was headed in. Apparently, it turned out to only be animal remains that was found.

    I apologize in advance if I have the story wrong.

    HERE are the lean-to pictures, from the early to mid 70's.

  • #2
    Very nice - thanks. That lean-to at IF was the best!
    Walk Softly

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    • #3
      old school revisited

      I found a bunch of slides from the 1970's that I have started to scan. Many I recognize but there will be some that I will need help identifying. I see my son (elhefe007a) already posted a few. The slide showing plateau leanto ( mid 70's) brings back memories. There are a few errors in my son's initial description. The DEC ranger in the picture was searching for a lost hiker. The hikers name escapes me but for those who were hiking during this time his picture was posted at about every trail head. The hiker was lost in the Marcy area and thought to be a victim of panther gorge. I remember reading that his brother returned to the area on numerous occasions to continue the search. On the day this photo was taken the ranger was in the area due to reports that possible remains were spotted. I don't think it amounted to any discovery and to my knowledge the hiker was never found. If anyone remembers the name and or details, please respond because it bothers me that i Can't remember. Tough getting OLD!!!!! Also some may recognize the DEC ranger. Hopefully this will spark some discussion.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by elhefe007a
        My father can help elaborate on this, but he was telling me about a story of a guy who dissapeared one night from Plateau Lean-to, thought to have fallen into Panther Gorge. Apparently, his picture was posted all over, and every summer his brother would come and search the Panther Gorge area, although to my fathers knowledge, nothing was ever found. Has anyone ever heard of this?
        Okay, before I answer this. Please understand, I have no life and I AM a death investigator by trade, so these morbid things of curiosity do tend hold my interest. I tend to have lots of useless data about missing/unxeplainded hiker disappearances. Disclaimer over.

        The guy your talking about is Steven Thomas, he went missing on Marcy in 1976. His brother Bob returned for many years in various attempts to locate him. VERY sad.

        Wanna here something even more ironic. Bob hired a renowned physic named Phil Jordan to help him find his brother. Instead the physic led the party to the skeletal remains of another missing hiker. A George (last name escapes me) from Massachusetts, who went missing in Panther Gorge in 1972.

        Steven has never been found.

        Odd huh {and I don't mean because I know all this}.
        Last edited by Mavs00; 08-28-2006, 09:27 PM.
        "The forest is the poor man's overcoat. " Old Northeastern Proverb

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        • #5
          That is weird.
          Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.
          It's about learning to dance in the rain.

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          • #6
            I liked the Indian falls leanto (Note: I'm not an old time 46er, but I am an old time hiker..... well.... not THAT old.... approaching middle age...)

            The Plateau leanto was one of my favorite's for its location.

            I notice in the picture, it is the new Marcy Dam. It had recently been rebuilt at around the time these pictures were taken. Any pictures of the dam from the 60's? It was much more rustic, built with much less finished lumber. The logs were used in an interesting way to create patterns as the water went down.
            Guinness: Goes in brown, comes out yellow.

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            • #7
              Thanks so much for posting the Plateau Lean-to photo. I stayed at many of the 4000'+ lean-tos back in the late 50's and early 60's--the Plateau and Four Corners were always my favorites and this photo brought many great memories back. I hiked past there with 3 of my in-laws this July, but there was just no way to truly convey what a privilege it was to be able to camp in a place like this.

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              • #8
                I wish I was as old as Pete and Alpine so I could have at least seen the 4000'+ lean-tos, but I started hiking a few years too late. This was posted elsewhere, but I'll mention it again - I scanned an article from Adirondack Peeks from 1976 regarding the old lean-tos, it's a Word doc. -here-

                I remember the posters about Steven Thomas at all the trailheads in the early 1980s and remember reading about his disappearance somewhere. From memory, he was with a group in late April 1976, they got to Plateau late in the afternoon and Steven went off to climb Marcy alone and was never seen again.

                Those old pics of the ranger station at Marcy Dam are amazing, the trees have grown up since and you can hardly see the building now. It's also amazing by today's standards there was a lean-to right at the top of Indian Falls, about 5 feet from the stream!

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                • #9
                  Thanks for that article Mike. I had seen all of them except Snobird and Four Corners. I recall the one time I passed the ones at Indian Falls and Plateau they were in ratty condition. Sort of like the old Hovel at Uphill. If you don't recall the old Uphill lean-to you didn't miss much. I missed seeing Four Corners by a day. We had backpacked via Lake Arnold to Lake Tear where we camped. Climbed Gray for my 45th, then spent the night in the lean-to. The next morning we climbed Skylight for my 46th and of course passed the Four Corners. The removal crew was just cleaning up. They burned the L-T rather than ditch the logs in the woods. Some of what could be salvaged they used to bridge wet areas along the trail. I remember sitting out a freezing rain storm in the Lake Arnold L-T following my first climb of Colden. Too tired, cold and miserable to take any pictures of it. Not long after it was gone as well.

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                  • #10
                    It's a shame they tore down those lean-tos. I would have loved to sleep in any of them.

                    Anyone notice what the folks in those pictures were wearing? We have expensive high tec equipment and fabric and these folks are out in blue jeans & flannel shirts. I think these old 46ers were a lot tougher than many of the contemporary ones.
                    Will you be my friend?

                    Just keeping myself occupied and out of trouble.

                    "One touch of nature makes the whole world kin"

                    William Shakespeare

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Little Rickie
                      It's a shame they tore down those lean-tos. I would have loved to sleep in any of them.

                      Anyone notice what the folks in those pictures were wearing? We have expensive high tec equipment and fabric and these folks are out in blue jeans & flannel shirts. I think these old 46ers were a lot tougher than many of the contemporary ones.
                      Rickie, I remember when returning from a three day trip and stopping at the boulders. Grace saw my new Kelty frame pack and ragged on me about the old timers toughing it out with pack baskets and bed rolls. She said something like, "oh how nice it must be to have down bags and modern frame packs." I expected to hear, "you kids couldn't take it if you had to go the way we did years ago." But Grace had too much class to hammer that hard.

                      It must have been quite the trek doing some of those peaks when they were "really trailess". I heard an aweful lot of "the old days stories", from Grace, Jim Goodwin, Glenn Fish, Dr Ketch and Big Axe. Does anyone remember "Big Axe" Mike Shaw? Those people were a joy to talk with, especially, Grace and Jim, really loved them both.
                      Last edited by Antlerpeak; 08-29-2006, 03:33 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Antlerpeak
                        I expected to hear, "you kids couldn't take it if you had to go the way we did years ago." But Grace had too much class to hammer that hard.
                        Who knows, maybe some day in the future the line will be: "Ah, you kids these days. In our day we had to hike to the top."

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Antlerpeak
                          Grace saw my new Kelty frame pack and ragged on me about the old timers toughing it out with pack baskets and bed rolls. She said something like, "oh how nice it must be to have down bags and modern frame packs."
                          Working smarter not harder


                          -Shayne

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Little Rickie
                            Anyone notice what the folks in those pictures were wearing? We have expensive high tec equipment and fabric and these folks are out in blue jeans & flannel shirts. I think these old 46ers were a lot tougher than many of the contemporary ones.
                            You hike up Marcy and its pouring rain…

                            1976 – You are a little uncomfortable because your blue jeans/ flannel shirt are wet, but you’re not cold. You blame it on the rain and forget about it.

                            2006- You are pissed off, because your Marmot Precip keeps the heat inside and your base layer is wet and it gives you the shivers. Your 350,00$ Gore-tex boots failed in keeping your feet dry, your ultra-lite pack got ripped when you went off-trail to avoid a mud hole (no way you’re going to mess up your brand new gaitors), plus your Camelbak has a leak so you lost all your Gatorade. You blame it on yourself and all you can think of is the new gear you are going to buy when you’ll get home.



                            (I can't imagine how nice it was to sleep in one of those lean-to's.
                            I really like seeing those old pics, please don't hesitate to share more.)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by timmus
                              You hike up Marcy and its pouring rain…

                              1976 – You are a little uncomfortable because your blue jeans/ flannel shirt are wet, but you’re not cold. You blame it on the rain and forget about it.

                              2006- You are pissed off, because your Marmot Precip keeps the heat inside and your base layer is wet and it gives you the shivers. Your 350,00$ Gore-tex boots failed in keeping your feet dry, your ultra-lite pack got ripped when you went off-trail to avoid a mud hole (no way you’re going to mess up your brand new gaitors), plus your Camelbak has a leak so you lost all your Gatorade. You blame it on yourself and all you can think of is the new gear you are going to buy when you’ll get home.
                              How right you are!
                              Scooting here and there
                              Through the woods and up the peaks
                              Random Scoots awaits (DP)


                              Eat, sleep, hike, repeat.

                              It doesn't have to be viewtiful to be beautiful. (NL)

                              "Pushing the limits of easy."

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