On Saturday Paula and I hit the road nice and early to avoid the pending snowpocalypse and hiked Black Mountain in Lake George. The last time I hiked this peak, I was working toward my Firetower Challenge and training for a marathon.
Paula picked me up at 6AM and we were dressed and on the trail at 7:46AM… but not before stopping at the new rest stop! I mentioned this stop in my previous hiking post and decided to take a couple of photographs this time around. Did you know NYS spent 16 million dollars on this project?! Holy smokes! The fancy video wasn’t playing this time around and I noticed there’s a fenced in area for dogs which is a perk I missed last time… not like I have a dog to let loose in there. I’m telling you, it’s good, but I don’t know if it’s 16 million dollars of taxpayer money good. Needless to say, I’ll be using this stop before every hike from now on to get my money’s worth.
Back to the hike. For some reason I remembered this hike being a little harder than it turned out to be. Maybe my legs were mega tired from all of the running I was doing back in those days? Or maybe it was the heat? On Saturday it was a lovely little hike, never really kicking my butt / requiring me to stop to catch my breath and question what the heck I was doing on my day off. Paula and I climbed at a steady pace, stopping only once to go to the bathroom and put on our microspikes. There was ice on the trail under the thin layer of snow that made it a little slippery. Admittedly it was a lot colder than I anticipated and my water tube froze. I woke up that morning and saw a balmy 26* on my iPhone and thought I’d be fine, but the further north we drove, the temperature dropped. When we started the hike it was only 7*. Not good planning on my part but I did know it was a short hike so I wasn’t too concerned.
When we arrived at the summit, I noticed the small windmill that wasn’t there the last time I visited and the snow covered tower (that you cannot climb due to the equipment that’s mounted to it). I thought we were completely socked in and scanned the sky to find gorgeous views of Vermont! AND! We were above the clouds looking west and north! It was super neat to see the snow storm clouds moving in quickly. We were lucky in that it wasn’t windy, so we could take a number of photographs without having to seek cover in the tree line.
Because it was an overall chilly morning, we only spent about ten minutes on the summit before heading down the trail. As always, I bundled up in my last layer and added a face mask; I’m typically colder on the way down due to the less amount of work needed to descent, especially in the snow. A sled would have been perfect!
On our way down we ran into a number of people, including Assemblyman Dan Stec. He was on the last hike we took two weeks ago as well – it’s great to see representatives on the trail! We also ran into two gentleman on snowmobiles who were cutting / moving downed trees from the trail. Now that’s dedication in this weather!