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Old 03-23-2011, 09:39 AM   #1
Josh Seeley
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Question Early Season Hiking! Crane Mountain -> Conditions?

Hello Hikers,

I am proud to say that I have finally made my way back from Manhattan to my true homeland of upstate NY. I am thrilled and plan to do lots of exploring in the ADKs soon.

Like most of you, I am totally feeling the itch to get out there and do some hiking! I always love the High Peaks, but am pretty sure they are still covered in winter conditions.

I know we are getting a bit of snow tonight, but has anyone been up Crane Mountain recently? I love starting the season with this hike and wonder if it is still totally covered in snow and ice? I would like to hike there this weekend, but don't really want the burden of snow shoes, crampons, gators, etc. etc.

Does anyone know what Crane Mt. area looks like right now?

Also, what other cool day hikes do ya'll like to do, early season, in the lower ADKs. I live in East Greenbush (near Albany).

For early hikes, I like places like:
- Crane Mountain
- Pharaoh Mountain

What ones do you like?
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Old 03-23-2011, 09:58 AM   #2
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Welcome home! I'm anxious to get out without all the winter gear as well, but we still have a while to wait. I live in the Lake George area and we still have lots of snow especially in the woods. I snowshoed in the Berry Pond Preserve area (near Prospect Mt.) last Thursday and the snow was very deep and soft. I like Buck Mt., Sleeping Beauty, and Prospect Mt. for early season tune-up hikes because they're all fairly close to home
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Old 03-23-2011, 08:26 PM   #3
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Buck Mt. is a great hike - I hiked it on 3/13/11 and needed snowshoes the whole way, about 2000 ft. elevation gain for a 6.6 mike RT hike, excellent views on the summit.

Hadley Mt. in Lake Luzerne / Corinth is another good early season hike.

Goodnow Mt. in Newcomb has great views and a firetower - a shorter hike, but well worth it.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:16 PM   #4
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I hiked Crane a many years ago in April. We had already had a string of 80 degree days leading up to the weekend. We climbed up from the trailhead with no issue. The snow didn't start until after we started descending the back side of the mountain towards the pond. It was steep and slippery, and I hadn't even thought about snow as being an option! If I remember correctly, the trail ascends the south / south-west facing side of the Mountain which gets sun.

Anyway, we ran into DEEP snow on the cut-off trail which leaves the pond and cuts back to the main trail below the summit. We were breaking through every other step up to our thighs! Not a fun experience but very educational for me. I would definately go prepared with snowshoes at this point.
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Old 03-25-2011, 10:41 AM   #5
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Thanks for the great suggestions and input. I guess I'll have to be patient and wait until Mother Nature lets us in. For now, I guess I'll be doing some local training around Albany. Does anyone have any places near Albany they like to hike early season?

Five Rivers? Grafton State Park? Pine Hill Preserve? Thatcher State Park?

Ummmm...
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Old 03-25-2011, 10:47 AM   #6
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More of a walk than a hike, but I like the bike path in Niskayuna. Right along the river.
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Old 03-25-2011, 01:35 PM   #7
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Yeah, that is nice down around Lock 7 and whatnot. Flat, but a good place for a jog or a bike ride.

I also like kicking around the Plotter Kill Falls area in Rotterdam. Such impressive falls for being so close to Albany. Anyway, as I type I realize that this is the Adirondack Forum so I probably shouldn't be talking about local hiking near Albany. My apoligies.

I am desperate to get out there on the trails!!!
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:41 AM   #8
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Hi,

Can't get to the trailhead yet (almost), there's snow to get to the side slope, and snow in the hollows - lots of it - below the summit.
This was a tough winter and there's a lot of snow still lying in shaded areas. Bizarre but true.
Lowland hikes that stick to south facing slopes are still the ticket: maybe Sleeping Beauty or Buck Mtn?

RE: Crane; I found something left behind at the parking area Monday morning. Anyone lose something after their hike up Crane over the weekend?
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Old 04-14-2011, 02:20 PM   #9
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Buck is good, was there today...
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:55 PM   #10
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Crane still need snowshoes? Was planning to go there this weekend.
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CKing View Post
Crane still need snowshoes? Was planning to go there this weekend.
Depends on how early you get up past the high hollow. I walked on top of the snow at 9am; sank to my knees a few times at 5pm.
The south-facing parts of the trail are clear; the hollows and northerly parts are deep in snow still.
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Old 04-16-2011, 04:49 PM   #12
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Thanks, we're going to head up there tomorrow. I'll bring the snowshoes but it doesn't sound like we'll be wearing them.
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Thanks, we're going to head up there tomorrow. I'll bring the snowshoes but it doesn't sound like we'll be wearing them.
You may want to reconsider. It's raining here as I write this (8:50pm), has been warming up over the past three hours. Started as snow this afternoon.
So you may encounter slopsh in the hollow tomorrow. Dunno what will stay on top of that. Obstinance is what it will take.
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:58 PM   #14
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The weather today was actually great. We timed it well, got started a little bit late to try to time the rain. Got started around 11 and it was great. Windy and gray for a bit but clear and blue later. Not blue when we got to the peak but the views were still pretty good.

I will say for the record: bring snow shoes! We decided not to and regretted it often. You'll have to switch between nothing, microspikes, and shoes quite a bit but there were sections near the top (after the first ladder) where we really wished we had shoes. Dumb me. And you'll want them more on the back part of the loop. Will probably need shoes for the next 3-5 weeks unless temps get really high. At times we ended up knee deep or more if we broke through, so I suspect the snow to stick around for a while.

What a great hike! Never done Crane before but we'll definitely be going back. Best hike I've been on in the 'dacks so far.
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:02 PM   #15
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Heh, I kinda like it, too. Just don't come during black fly season.
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:15 PM   #16
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We probably doubled the amount but I suspect all of the post holes I saw today were from you? Thanks for marking the trail LOL. At times we knew what to avoid and at other times I followed your nicely compacted steps. And plenty of other times I ended up knee deep in snow.






Damn I need gaiters. . . .
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