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Old 11-04-2004, 02:18 PM   #1
soco7tyx7
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Northville-Placid trail experiences

hello all. my friend and i are planning a thru-hike of the Northville-Placid trail in the summer of 05'. i wanted to know everybody's experiences that have hiked the trail, either thru or parts. these can be anywhere from problems encountered, victories, things learned, things not to do the next time, inspiration and/or anything else you could possibly think of that might be important for a first timer to learn before taking on the trail. i'm really looking foward to reading your replies so please dont be shy !!
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Old 11-04-2004, 04:02 PM   #2
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soco, here's some reading material:

http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=1253

http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=1341

http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=1073

http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=900

http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=868
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Old 11-12-2004, 04:28 PM   #3
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My son and I did this trip (Upper Benson to Placid) at the end of the summer this year. The few things I would advise are:

1) plan a decent amount of days in which to hike the trail based on your ability - we were in fairly good shape going into the trip and we took 11 days to complete the trip

2) take some type of sandal with you - to get your hiking boots off at the end of the day and also ford the trail where it is underwater between McCanes and Stephens Pond

3) take a few days hikes (10-15 miles) and if possible at least one over-night before you do the trail. It will ensure that your boots are ready.

4) make sure you take enough moleskin and first aid stuff to take care of your feet

5) start planning well in advance of your trip - it will allow you to relax before you start

Just of few observations.

It is a fun trip. We will probably do it again sometime. If you have any specific questions, feel free to leave me a note here and I can get back to you. I had several people be kind enough to answer my questions as I was planning and I would be happy to help someone else.

--NicksMaint
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Old 11-13-2004, 02:29 AM   #4
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I hiked the NPT in September in 10 days. I believe Sacco put up a link to my thread. A few tips I can add:

1.) When I do it again I will take more time. 11-12 days would have made it a lot easier.

2.) Check out Back to the Basics . Dan and Kim are great. They offer a free night of lodging to thru-hikers either the night before or the night after you finish(depending on the direction you are going) and will drive you to the trailhead. Their hospitality is amazing. They cooked dinner and breakfast for me and made me feel right at home. Also when you finish they will add a page to their website with your photos and journal entries.

3.) Try to plan your itinerary so you spend a night at Lake Durant campgroud which the trail passes through. That mid-hike hot shower was great! Its also a good place to have someone meet you for a re-supply.

4.) The sandals are a great idea. I also used mine for the road walk from Wakely Dam to McCanes. they were a lot easier on my feet than my boots would have been on the gravel and pavement.

5.) As you pack analyze every item to see if it is really necessary. When I was resupplied I sent a lot of items home that I thought I had needed...fork, knife, stuff sacks. Its amazing how quickly weight stacks up.

6.) Drink, drink, drink, and don't forget an electolyte replacement

7.) When you're done...get a massage. You'll feel brand new.

Enjoy!! I had a blast and I can't wait to do it again.
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Old 11-13-2004, 09:17 AM   #5
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Ditto on comment by frvwld in regards to Lake Durant. We stayed there overnight and actually had my wife meet us to bring us the supplies we needed to finish the trip (along with some clean clothes). Also good comment on the fluids - you have to be drinking all the time.

One thing I forgot to mention that I did before our trip and that was to read whatever notes I could find on-line from people who have done the trip. Links to fvrwld's trip, a site www.avatar12.com both would be good to read (even after you have done the trip). Also I posted a short report of our trip on www.viewsfromthetop.com under this same name (NicksMaint), posted 9-14-2004. Did not put them here because I was not aware of the forum at the time.
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Old 11-13-2004, 11:26 AM   #6
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Last summer I did Long Lake to Placid. Prepare to get really wet after Long Lake. I was up to my chest in water, and had to hold my pack over my head. After Duck Hole it was kind of messy with lots of blow down and questionable bridges. That aside, I went alone and walked for 3 days with out seeing more than one or two people. Its the best trip I have ever taken. For years I have been hiking in the peaks. There is so much beauty on this trail I can't belive I havn't done it sooner.
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Old 11-16-2004, 02:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natty Bumpo
Last summer I did Long Lake to Placid. Prepare to get really wet after Long Lake. I was up to my chest in water, and had to hold my pack over my head.
This spot now has a very well defined herdpath around it.
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Old 11-16-2004, 10:01 AM   #8
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val, what do you think about a winter trek from LL to placid?
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Old 11-16-2004, 03:49 PM   #9
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Better the other way I think Placid to Long Lake. I might be game.
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Old 11-16-2004, 04:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redhawk
Better the other way I think Placid to Long Lake. I might be game.

how come?


can't really nail down any dates right now, but it's the last of the NPT for me to do. i was thinking it might be nice to do it when LL is frozen since i've already done from LL village to the top of the lake and that part of the trail isn't that scenic anyway.

the funny thing is, since reading about noah john rondeau back in highschool, it's the part of the trail i've most wanted to do and never have gotten to it.
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Old 11-16-2004, 04:46 PM   #11
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i was thinking some time in march when there's still snow and the lake is still solid, but the days are a little longer.
like to do it on skis

thoughts?
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:52 AM   #12
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I would love to but March is a very busy month for. Maybe I could do the 1st week in March or the middle of Febuary. Also I don't have skis, I paln on taking a few cross country lessons this year but I doubt I'll own any by then.

FYI...Long Lake is very busy with snowmobile traffic in the winter. Not necessarily a bad thing, you could catch a tow.
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:06 AM   #13
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Unless I get skis and some expertise this winter, rule me out as far as skis go. I might showshoe.
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:08 AM   #14
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sacco & socco

Sounds like a new Ben & Jerry's flavor doesn't it?
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Old 11-17-2004, 01:13 PM   #15
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i'm gonna take this conversation to a new planning thread.
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Old 11-25-2004, 09:52 AM   #16
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i did a solo end-end trip in 97. i carried about 44 lbs and did not resupply. i took 7 days to do the trail and then hitched a ride to heart lake where i hiked the range to keene valley, another 2 days. it was a great trip. what would i do different? i would take more time and use drop bags for resupply so i could lighten the load.
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Old 12-15-2004, 04:49 PM   #17
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Npt

We just finished a 9 day thru hike at the end of October '04. It was a great time of year. No bugs, not that much mud, and few people on the trail.

A few pointers:

1. We went from Upper Benson to Mud Lake the first nite, then from Mud Lake to the Third Lake lean-to(which is terrific, it is right on the lake and there is a dock). This was the longest day of the trip, very long, 20+ miles and much of it was up hill. I am in pretty good shape(completed the NYC Marathon 2 weeks after the thru-hike) and I was completely beat after that stretch. i would definitely break up that day in to 2. We didn't bring tents, but if we had we probably would have camped where the Trail crosses the Jessep River. Great spot.

2. Between the property formerly known as McCains and Lake Durant, there is a "substantial" marsh. Closely monitor the right side of the trail for ribbons on the trees that lead you around the wettest part and to a downed tree that acts as a bridge. I read a few posts recently that talk of hikers wading there. It isn't necessary.

3. Don't stand too close to the guy who runs the general store in Piseco. Or strike up a conversation with him if you are in a hurry. Nice guy. Good talker though.

4. After Lake Durant, enjoy the hike to Tirrell Pond. Spend some time there. Relax in the camp furnature someone made. It gets pretty steep to the hight of land between there and Long Lake. And it is very steep decent to Long Lake. Get a room at the Adirondack Hotel, and arrange for a ride from the Hamlet to the trailhead the next day. Saves a lot of highway walking. If time does not permit a stay in Long Lake, the first lean-to on the Lake is only 1 mile in.

Two of us used a MSR Superfly stove and used less than 2 fuel canisters.
We had a water filter breakdown, bring contingencies.

Bring a bear canister.

We didn't need a tent, there are lots of lean-to's.

Vodka and powdered Tang make for a nice cocktail in the evening.

The ADK book is fairly accurate. There was lots of blowdown and mud, get ready for it. It should be muddier in the summer.

Have a blast! It was one of the best vacations of my life.

Please contact me with any other questions. I could talk about that trip all day, so i would love to share our experience with you.

Rob
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Old 12-15-2004, 04:52 PM   #18
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Where you from Rob?
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Old 12-15-2004, 04:56 PM   #19
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I should be working...

I am from Albany, currently living in Saratoga Springs.

You?

Rob
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Old 12-15-2004, 05:16 PM   #20
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I live in Wells, just about 7 miles from the Whitehouse trailhead... You been "playing in my backyard".

If you want to meet some of us, we are gathering here in Wells this weekend. You'll see the notice on the Forum Xmas gathering.

ALternative itinerary on the Benson to Piseco is to do Benson to Silver Lake the first day and the second day do Silver Lake to Buckhorn Pond just off the trail about 1 mile from the Piseco Trailhead. great tent camping places there, along with a Blue Heron Rookery, osprey nest, beaver lodge, fishing and moose sign. Then hike into the Spruce Lake lean tos the third day.

And Welcome to the adkforum!!
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