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Overlook 12/3/6

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  • Overlook 12/3/6

    Yes, this feels like Neil's "Marcy, yes Marcy" post. Everyone has done Overlook right? Well maybe, but yesterday, we decided to explore a little. If you hang a right at the first dirt road going up the main road, you come to a split. If you go right, you come to a cell tower and a cabin. The cabin looked like it was still in pretty good shape, with lots of posted signs. Nice views from here as well!

    Continuing up the other fork, there are 2 old settlements. One is just a ruins, and the other is a run down cabin. Not much of any interest, but interesting to know they are there.

    The road breaks down into a path which leads to a small sub-summit of Overlook. From here you can get great views of the tower, the cliffs, and the old mountain house. Eventually the path comes back out to the road, a little before the house.

    We explored the house a little too. Laurie told me it had never been used! It closed before it ever opened, due to the stock market crash! You learn something new every day!

    Eventually we got to the summit and the tower. We were surprised to see that Echo Lake is just barely visible from the top flight of stairs up in the tower. Cool!

    The wind was howling up there, but the views were great in the late afternoon sun.

    We walked along the cliffs and saw the plane wreck down below as we slowly headed back down.

    It was a fun day of exploring a familiar mountain!
    Tom Rankin - 5444W "In the depths of Summer, I finally learned that there lay within me an invincible Winter"

    Proud Member #0003 of ADKHP Foundation
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  • #2
    Hey Tom,

    Sounds like you and Laurie had a great hike. I will have to keep that in mind, sounds like something I would like to explore; maybe in February when I am up there backpacking Echo Lake.

    Happy Trails!
    I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
    -Maya Angelou


    • #3
      Sounds great. I love Overlook, particularly for that little ledge on the side trail past the cabin. It always breaks my heart to leave that lookout. It's sort of a shame that a lot of folks don't seem to take Overlook seriously for it's small size and it's easy trail.
      молоко хорошо, ну а водка ещё лучше.


      • #4
        Nice report. I do remember many times looking up at Overlook back in the 1970s at night and seeing lights in those settlement cabins when they were still occupied. The UMP called for the two cabin ruins near the junction to be removed. I am not sure why the one is still standing while the other was removed several years ago. The cleared site seems to be infested with gnats, otherwise it might be a nice camp site. The cell tower and the TV/radio tower near the hotel ruins are both now on state land, but were built before the state purchase. Both have long term leases which could run until 2105 (cell) and 2073 (TV/radio) - though it is hard to imagine we will be using these technologies that long. The cell tower site was once part of the Overlook Hotel property - it was "The Shandaken View", a once wide cut and maintained view of the "Shandaken Mountains" (the original name of the Catskills south of the Esopus). At one time the Shandakens were considered inferior to the Catskills (the mountains generally north of the Esopus). However, once Arnold Guyot established that Slide Mt was higher than any of the Catskills, the Shandakens were quickly annexed into the Catskills. There is a map of the Overlook Hotel property in Alf Evers' book Woodstock, History of an American Town. The map shows the roads that Tom and Laurie hiked, and many other now obscure paths.

        There was an article in the May-June 1976 issue of DEC magazine The Conservationist, "My Grandfather and the Mountain", written by Bill Newgold, grandson of Morris Newgold who built the ill fated third hotel we see in ruins today. Two earlier wood hotels had burned on the site. The article has quite a bit of history that I have not seen elsewhere. Morris Newgold was the owner of the Times Square Hotel in NYC. He purchased the second Overlook Hotel in 1917 and restored it to profitability. It burned in 1924. Morris Newgold sold the Times Square Hotel and used the proceeds to fund the new concrete hotel on Overlook. Work began in 1927. He was not invested in the stock markets, and so was unaffected by the stock market crash. Construction work continued on the hotel through the depression until Morris Newgold became ill in 1939. The exterior was essentially done. A central wooden tower rose 4 stories above the current roof line, shown here. The hotel was boarded up in 1940, but quickly was vandalized. World War II and the changing tastes in American travel were the final blows that kept the hotel from completion. Additional info and photos are on the Hudson Valley Ruins website.
        “Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right.” Henry Ford
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