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Old 02-07-2021, 12:18 PM   #1
smr220
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Fairytale forest hikes

Unusual request - but what hike or region would you consider the most “magical” or “fairytale” like. You know the images from red ridding hood
Or Hansel and gretel. Mystical mossy taller trees fir/needles blanketing the ground, etc etc.

I’ve found a few hikes in the Catskills that sort of fit this bill (Pratt rock hike comes to mind).

Anyone?
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Old 02-07-2021, 01:54 PM   #2
montcalm
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I have a couple that come to mind but none are continuously that way.

The trail to shallow lake from Brown’s Tract road has a section I think of like the this but it’s only after you leave an old road and first enter Pigeon Lake WA. It doesn’t last that long before it turns to more ‘ordinary’ forest.

I also really like the trail between Ochre pond and Fish Pond that goes around Mud pond (and not the Truck Traill). It’s s up on an Esker with large white pine and Hemlock hovering above. You also seem to walk through the tree tops below as the esker is steep sided. It’s cool.

I can also think of a number of areas like that in the Paul Smith’s area. Some along the trail to St Regis Mtn. Some around the VIC rails at PSC.

Pine Orchard is a short hike to a fairly magnificent older stand of White Pine.

Sections of the Oswegatchie River and the adjacent trail have theses kind of qualities.
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Old 02-07-2021, 02:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montcalm View Post
I have a couple that come to mind but none are continuously that way.

The trail to shallow lake from Brown’s Tract road has a section I think of like the this but it’s only after you leave an old road and first enter Pigeon Lake WA. It doesn’t last that long before it turns to more ‘ordinary’ forest.

I also really like the trail between Ochre pond and Fish Pond that goes around Mud pond (and not the Truck Traill). It’s s up on an Esker with large white pine and Hemlock hovering above. You also seem to walk through the tree tops below as the esker is steep sided. It’s cool.

I can also think of a number of areas like that in the Paul Smith’s area. Some along the trail to St Regis Mtn. Some around the VIC rails at PSC.

Pine Orchard is a short hike to a fairly magnificent older stand of White Pine.

Sections of the Oswegatchie River and the adjacent trail have theses kind of qualities.
Perfect thanks for the great suggestions!

Keep em coming folks!
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Old 02-07-2021, 02:50 PM   #4
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Pine Orchard also came to my mind when reading this thread- that's in Wells, in the southern Adirondacks. Pleasant walk on an old road into an impressive stand of white pine.

The trail connecting Bradley Pond to Duck Hole has always sort of felt like this to me. Much of it follows an old road through evergreen stands in a remote valley nestled in the High Peaks, and it's easy to imagine along the way that you are hiking through a forgotten forest of eras long past. The trail gets very little use, and most of it is flat and pleasant hiking along a babbling brook. (Although be warned- the first mile or so of the trail north of Bradley Pond is super steep and pretty badly washed out and eroded in spots.)

Indian Pass is nothing shy of fantastic, especially the sections where the trail wanders around and over boulders the size of houses all jumbled and piled together.

I'll also ditto the recommendation for some of the trails at the Paul Smiths Visitors Interpretive Center (VIC). Nearby, you might check out the trails to Grass Pond and Sheep's Meadow in the Hays Brook area of the Debar Mountain Wild Forest. These trails follow old roads through stands of pine. Sheep's Meadow in particular is super neat- there's a bunch of natural heath barren-type clearings here. It sort of feels like the Dolly Sods in WV in a way.

Pack Forest is open to the public for hiking. Some of the logging roads here make for pleasant strolls through pine forest.
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Old 02-07-2021, 04:42 PM   #5
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Trails near and around the south end of Massawepie Lake, through the edegs of the Massawepie Mire.
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:08 PM   #6
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I have a couple of areas that will require a bit of walking and some bushwhack travel.

There are gigantic very deep kettle holes on a bushwhack to the east of Ledge Pond, south of Mountain Pond, north of Long Pond in the St Regis area. Deep crater-like kettles with connecting crater rims to walk along connecting eskers. Adding to the scene are the largest piles of pine cone midden debris left by squirrels that I have ever seen at the base of pine trees. Some piles are 3-4 feet high up the tree trunks.

Another place I like a lot is somewhere on a short bushwhack just off the trail between Deer Pond and Cowhorn Pond in the Five Ponds Wilderness. Large kettle bowls with virtually no trees inside, rather filled with lush soft ferns. I dubbed the area "Jurassic Park", since one can easily picture galloping dinosaurs romping through the depths of ferns. Not far away from there and the bushwhack to the "Tri-County Marker" is "The Old Man", a gigantic very large diameter white pine tree whose top got ripped off during the 1995 derecho. I heard that It at one time was a contender for the largest white pine in the state. Before that blowdown event there were dozens of similar extremely large pine brothers in the area.


Jurassic Park:
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File Type: jpg jp2.jpg (86.2 KB, 120 views)
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:17 PM   #7
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Another giant white pine grove, a roadside trail with no bushwhack necessary, is Cathedral Pines, near the north end of Seventh Lake on Rte28. Thee's a very small sign, and it is easy to miss with not much of a pull-out for one or two cars only.
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:26 PM   #8
montcalm
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Seems like one area comes up... Paul Smith's, St. Regis Canoe Area.

For whatever reason, there's a lot of pockets of forest like that up there. Part of the reason I really love it. That coupled with the topography of ponds, lakes, eskers and kettles makes it really cool.

Truth be told - those types of forest are all over the park. Virtually everywhere if you know where to look, usually in small pockets. I think poor soil, wind exposure and drainage have a big impact on where you see these pine and hemlock stands which give what I think you are seeking. You actually see this type of forest a lot along ponds/lakes, and up on steep slopes near river basins. Also edges of cliffs/rugged terrain. Pretty much anywhere that is too harsh for eastern hardwood forest to dominate and not so low and wet as to turn it over to tamarack and spruce (or so high an elevation to go to spruce/balsam or birch forest).
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Old 02-08-2021, 12:40 AM   #9
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There's a small area on the the way back to our tent camp we use during deer season that we've always referred to as the Fairy Swamp, always lush and green swamp that looks like it's out of Lord of the Rings.
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Old 02-08-2021, 08:12 AM   #10
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Tongue loop from Clay Meadows with a bathing suit and water shoes.
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Old 02-08-2021, 09:20 AM   #11
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The Pharaoh region with its numerous crystal clear lakes & ponds & campsites & lean-tos & fishing & dry trails & tumbling streams & waterfalls & beaver meadows & rugged terrain & cliffs & open peaks & open woods & old growth & bushwhacking opportunities & old mines & history etc etc.
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Old 02-08-2021, 11:06 AM   #12
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A few places come to mind;

-When no one else is there, Panther Gorge gives me a feeling of isolation and remoteness.

-Hunters Pass with its slides on both sides makes me feel small.

-The trail from Long Pond that passes Mountain Pond on its way to Long Pond Mountain has some mossy areas that feel primeval.

-Agree with Justin about the Pharaoh area, especially the untrampled open peaks. In late spring I have found patches of Lady Slippers that were too numerous to count.

-The Cold River always has a magical feel to it.

-The old mines and ruins in Graphite can be eerie.

-The McIntyre Blast Furnace.

-Elk Pass and Gill Brook.
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Old 02-08-2021, 02:54 PM   #13
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Indian Mt. Pond, sheer cliffs framed by open water and matted with Blue Flag Iris with the setting sun casting an deep orange tint to all that care...lucky to see a trout rise or hear a beaver tail flap..pines whispering their secrets...
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Old 02-08-2021, 04:03 PM   #14
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These are all fantastic suggestions. I google mapped many of these are entirely what I was looking for.

Was up in the PNW 2 years ago and every nook and cranny is dotted with these magical scenescapes, and whilst I know it is not apples and oranges to compare the cascades with the ADK; I was hoping there would be at least a few areas. And indeed it appears that there are.
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Old 02-08-2021, 09:24 PM   #15
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I agree with Dave about Hunter's - a special feeling there.

Many of my 46 were done at nite, by this I mean leave at 11:00 pm to see the sunrise from the summit. The moonlight always added a fairytale element to the hikes.

One instance was a bit different. I was climbing Marcy so I could see the sunrise and snap some outstanding photos with my disposable camera. Then I would head down the other side, climb Skylight, and be back in Rochester for dinner.

I've tramped all over the ADK's, at nite, and by myself, but this ascent creeped me out like nothing ever has. There was a light fog blowing around and the moon was insanely bright. Kept looking behind me, peering around corners, etc. Just sitting on rocks in the windy, foggy moonlight was weird. I've never felt this way before, and I hope I don't again.

I wouldn't call it magical, but it is firmly etched in my memory.

I got my start nite hiking in the Sleeping Bear Dunes in northern lower Michigan. If you like nite hiking, wait till the moon is out and hike back to Lake Michigan across the dunes. It's like another planet.
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Old 02-09-2021, 04:46 PM   #16
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The walk along Colvin Ridge, (little traveled) is a nice trip.
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