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Mt. Inez: A Wonderful History Lesson 9-17-22

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  • Mt. Inez: A Wonderful History Lesson 9-17-22

    DISCLAIMER - Mount Inez sits on Private Land. I did this hike with Champlain Area Trails who obtained permission from the property owners to lead this hike. Do not go on this hike without receiving permission first or you will be charged with trespassing.

    Inez Milholland was at the forefront of the women's suffrage movement in the early 20th Century. She travelled far and wide pushing for women's rights. Which ultimately led to her contracting anemia which led to her early death. She passed four years before women's movement achieved their main goal: the right to vote. Had it not been for her untimely passing you may have thought of her name before thinking of Susan B Anthony when you hear the words "Women's Suffrage Movement." Inez's family lived in Lewis for the latter part of her life. Her father requested that the small peak on his land be renamed Mount Inez in 1916.

    The USGS rejected Mr. Milholland's request. It would be a long battle for "Mount Inez" to become a reality. Locals followed Mr. Milholland's wishes and referred to it as such. Finally, in 2019 the peak went from a bland and overused name to being renamed Mount Inez.

    My first memories of Mount Inez come from some point in the 1990's. My family was driving to my grandparent's camp at Kings Bay on 87 and I saw this mountain on fire.
    Passing it on the Northway, this small peak sticks out because of it's impressive "newly" exposed rock faces and ledges which stand out on the highway. It's even more impressive looking when driving North on 9.

    Inez has been on my bucketlist for a while. I even did some research into it and neighboring (the other) Rattlesnake Mountain this past Spring after some hikes in Lewis. Realizing they were both on private lands. I pretty much dropped the idea.

    On Thursday night, I saw an ad from Champlain Area Trails (CATS) stating they were leading a hike up Mount Inez! I immediately signed up.
    I feel that I've been pretty vocal in my support around CATS around here... Opportunities like this, are just one reason why. Seriously, stop right now and go follow them on your preferred choice of social media or email and then get back to reading this TR. The CATS group rules!

    I received an email telling me where to show up and by when (1:30). I arrived at 1:15 and was glad to see that Ray (President of my ADK Chapter) and fellow chapter-mate Anne were there.

    "How many peaks does your daughter have left?" asked Ray.

    "We finished last month, Ray" I replied.

    "Oh great, what peak did you finish on?"

    "Haystack." I said. Then, I gave an abbreviated account of my TR which you can find here.

    Group Leader Tony is the new trailmaster at CATS and he is looking forward to expanding recreational opportunities. He is replacing Bill Amadon at the position.
    He led a group introduction and told us that we were crossing two property owners lands. The summit belongs to a family in Baltimore. They own the Noxzema line of skin care products.

    I wouldn't want to mess with them.

    Tony had us circle up and introduce ourselves and told us what to look for on the hike.
    The last guy to introduce himself was an older fellow in a red Barkeaters shirt... I thought I recognized his last name.

    The hike followed a woods road in a new growth forest.

    "This was the peak that was on fire in the 90s?" I said to Tony.

    "Yes, in fact this trail was cut by the firefighters," he replied.

    That's pretty cool.

    Because of that, there's a buncha loose rocks which could easily mess you up.

    I kinda adopted the role of middleman on the ascent. This was a large group being led by Tony and swept by CATS Blowdown Steve. I kept a position where a leading group could see me and the last group could also see me. This spot opened up a number of conversations.

    Anne mentioned that the man in the red shirt was her brother.

    "I think I caught it, But, what did he say his last name was?"

    "Biesemeyer," replied Anne.

    I knew Anne was married to an ADK legend, And, that she is one of the earliest finishers of the 46... I had No clue that her father was The Man up here.

    "Oh... Wow... We've stopped by your Father's lean-to a few times," I said, "That is one of the best hikes (Soda Range)."

    It was nice listening to her stories and opinions on things. She seemed to enjoy discussing and agreeing with a few of my opinions as well.
    And, of course we shared a few quick fun High Peak stories.

    Dang, I belong to a cool chapter of ADK.

    The trail took us the easy way up to the summit ridge. Once there, we stood over a number of ledges and open rock. I was one of only a few in the group to follow the ledges further South and appreciate the immediate Westerly view of the Jay Range. These viewpoints were very much like a zoomed in view from Poke-O and some of the Champlain Valley peaks. I personally enjoyed the view of Hurricane from this angle and the ability to see Algonquin. The Giant of the Valley blocks a few things when viewed from the North.

    I enjoyed enough time to do a little summit area exploration and eat lunch before we all lined up for a group Pic. Inez is a fine mountain with great views. Again, I encourage you to sign up for CATS updates. The descent was enjoyable.

    Back at the trailhead, I told Steve that my favorite ADK trail was a CATS trail.

    "I know that you guys have a little more freedom. But, the way that you guys have been cranking out trails blows my mind. DEC needs to take notes on how CATS gets it done."

    Steve and I went on to discuss my favorite CATS trail. It is the most well designed trail in the ADK. Steve told me that Matt Amadon spent a lot of time to make the trail include as many natural elements as possible.

    I replied, "That makes a trail a trail."

    Anne offered to lead anyone interested in a quick drive over to Inez's plot at the Cemetery. I went along.

    In a small town in Upstate New York, at the top of the Cemetery Field is a gravestone for Inez. There's also a pretty nice view of a mountain which bears her name.

    I'm really glad that took advantage of this opportunity to hike a small peak loaded with a ton of history behind it. Everything else was just an added bonus or added lesson. Seriously, take a minute to check out CATS. They offer some incredible opportunities.