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Old 03-30-2021, 08:34 AM   #11
DSettahr's Avatar
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 5,296
Originally Posted by Justin View Post
Cool! I’ve been wanting to try this bushwhack since my first trip to Boreas Ponds back in May of ‘16. I guess I better get on that before it becomes a marked trail.
I mean... at the rate that the state moves on these things, I think it is probably safe to assume that you have the better part of a decade (at least) before those plans become reality.

I've poked around on both sides of the river as far up as the site of the Brace Dam. There is an old road on the west side (you can see it shown on the USGS map) but the first tenth of a mile or so is on private property so the only way to access it is to bushwhack up the east side of the river and ford the river. There's also some patches of gnarly blowdown in the vicinity that can slow you up some, but once you make past the blowdown it's pretty easy walking on the old road up to the dam site.

The east side of the river you can find evidence of what appears to have once been a fairly well-established fisherman's herd path but it's pretty much gone now.

The Adirondack Museum has a few photos of what the Brace Dam area looked like, which are neat to compare to the present day views at that same spot. It doesn't look even a little bit the same:



I've also poked around a bit along Andrew Brook, north of Wolf Pond. There was a main branch logging road that accessed that area from Blue Ridge Road via the Boreas property- you can still park at the Andrew Brook Road Parking Area on Blue Ridge Road and hike in that way. The old road gets pretty brushy in spots and honestly the forest in the vicinity was pretty well cut over and there's a lot of young growth and the bushwhacking in that area isn't the best. I did hike through from Andrew Brook Road to Wolf Pond last summer and it was an OK bushwhack, noting particularly exciting- just lots of dense, young forest.

Interestingly, no road connection was ever constructed between Andrew Brook Road and Gulf Brook Road, even though portions of the spur roads from both roads pass within maybe 1,000-2,000 feet of each other in a few spots.

At some point, I'd also like to hike the Cheney Pond-Irishtown Snowmobile Trail all the way through. I've hiked this from Blue Ridge Road as far as the Lester Flow dam site, and even crossed the river here and poked around a bit before returning, but have yet to explore any further south (apart from some higher elevation ramblings in the Hoffman Notch Wilderness in the vicinity of Marion Pond).

It would be neat if a longer backpacking loop could be constructed combining all of these areas- plus the Ragged Mountain/Branch River area to the east and Hoffman Notch itself.
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