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Elk Lake-Marcy Trail update

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  • TFR
    replied
    Originally posted by DSettahr View Post

    However, the northern-most lot is fairly small- it can hold maybe about 20+ cars or so. (The exact number varies considerably, the High Peaks crowd it turns out is really, really bad at parking in a manner conducive to fitting the most cars possible into a trailhead parking lot).
    This happens everywhere. The 'blame' lies with the creator of the lot.

    The problem is there are no lines or guidance. The first person parks wherever they see fit. (Or, there may be leftovers from the day before). They may park parallel or nose in. (The 'best' way depends on the geometry of the lot). The next person may try not to get too close to the other car(s). They might deliberately park far away. Then as the lot fills in, we end up with gaps that look like they could have easily been avoided. But probably not, without some sort of guidance. Even a sign like 'PARK NOSE IN' would help. I've seen 1 lot with hand drawn markings on where to park, which seems to work.

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  • DSettahr
    replied
    The northern-most lot will re-open for parking in the spring. Elk Lake is closed to all public access every Autumn some time in October after Columbus Day for hunting season (the exact date varies). Once hunting season finishes in early December, foot traffic is again permitted for the remainder of winter, but the road is not plowed beyond Clear Pond and so all hikers must park at the middle lot (erroneously named as the "Upper" lot by the DEC). Once the snow has melted in the spring and mud season has concluded, the gate at Clear Pond is re-opened and motor vehicles are once again allowed to the northernmost lot right at the trailhead (usually sometime in mid- to late May).

    However, the northern-most lot is fairly small- it can hold maybe about 20+ cars or so. (The exact number varies considerably, the High Peaks crowd it turns out is really, really bad at parking in a manner conducive to fitting the most cars possible into a trailhead parking lot). When the road to the northern-most is open, no overflow parking is permitted on the roadside- so any late comers must park at the lot by Clear Pond and walk the 2 miles in to the trailhead. When hiking the Dix Range in the summer or early Autumn season, a super early arrival at the trailhead is strongly recommended (even on weekdays).

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  • NJTom
    commented on 's reply
    I'm new to the Elk Lake game, having never been in there as yet. Is the northernmost lost supposed to reopen for parking at some point and, if so, when?

  • DSettahr
    replied
    Originally posted by MTVhike
    I thought the first parking area (the DEC one, before Clear Pond) was open, and access on foot was open until Oct. 22.
    I went back and re-read the press-release and you are correct. I misread it as being "closed to all foot traffic on 10/12," but it's open to foot traffic until the 10/22. They just shut the gate on the 12th.

    BTW, it's semantics but the Clear Pond lot is not the first parking area. There's another on further down- there's 3 total parking lots on that road. There's the "Lower Elk Lake Lot," the "Upper Elk Lake Lot" (the one at Clear Pond), and then the last lot right at the trail head that is on the Elk Lake easement itself (the one you currently can walk to but can't drive to). For some reason, the DEC decided to call the middle lot the "Upper Lot." Hence some of this confusion.

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  • MTVhike
    commented on 's reply
    I thought the first parking area (the DEC one, before Clear Pond) was open, and access on foot was open until Oct. 22.

  • DSettahr
    replied
    Originally posted by MTVhike View Post
    I have a friend who's planning to go there this weekend. He will park at the first PA and hike in to Panther Gorge, then exit via either the East River or Calamity Brook trails to Upper Works(ish) where he will have spotted another car.
    First parking area where? If Elk lake then... EDIT: I'm an idiot- the clear pond gate closed to motor vehicle access on 10/12, but foot traffic is permitted until 10/22.

    If Boreas Ponds, then your friend should be aware that Boreas Ponds road is currently closed to all pedestrian traffic until at least the end of November while culverts are torn out and bridges installed in their place. Additionally, the roads north of Boreas Ponds have been torn up and are extremely unpleasant to hike on at present. It's also tricky getting from Boreas Ponds to the Elk Lake-Marcy Trail without running afoul of private property on AMR lands.
    Last edited by DSettahr; 10-13-2021, 11:50 AM.

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  • MTVhike
    replied
    I have a friend who's planning to go there this weekend. He will park at the first PA and hike in to Panther Gorge, then exit via either the East River or Calamity Brook trails to Upper Works(ish) where he will have spotted another car.

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  • DSettahr
    replied
    Originally posted by NorthShore View Post
    Planning this route and DEC weekly bulletin still says the bridge is out and wading is the only way to get through. It's the same notice since 2020. Has anyone been there recently?
    EDIT: Nevermind, I'm an idiot (see explanation below).
    Last edited by DSettahr; 10-13-2021, 11:52 AM.

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  • At-Trail
    replied
    I ate lunch on the bridge a couple of weeks ago. Nice build; the handrail is up.

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  • tgoodwin
    replied
    I will try to get the DEC to update their bulletin. The bridge is definitely there. The DEC's weekly bulletin does not mention this problem.
    Last edited by tgoodwin; 10-10-2021, 09:26 AM. Reason: Additional information

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  • NorthShore
    replied
    Planning this route and DEC weekly bulletin still says the bridge is out and wading is the only way to get through. It's the same notice since 2020. Has anyone been there recently?

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  • tgoodwin
    started a topic Elk Lake-Marcy Trail update

    Elk Lake-Marcy Trail update

    The bridge over the Inlet to the Upper Ausable Lake is now back in service. A railing will eventually be added, but the bridge is safe to cross with a bit of care. The rest of Marcy Swamp remains fully bridged.
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