Monday, January 19, 2015

NY Appalachian Trail - Section 12 - Route 17A to Long Path

January 19, 2015

Miles: 6.5
Time: 3 hours 20 minutes

Year to date miles: 6.5

Parking: Large parking area at intersection of Continental Road and Route 17A.
A short distance from the parking area is Bellvale Farms Creamery which is great place to stop by for ice cream on a hot day.

Rest rooms: None.

Hike directions:
Take blue trail from parking lot.

Cross Continental Road.
Turn left on AT (northbound).
Cross Route 17A

Climb over Eastern Pinnacles rock outcrop (or use blue trail for route around rocks)
Climb over Cat Rocks rock outcrop (or use blue trail for route around rocks)
Pass blue trail on left to Wildcat Shelter
End where trail turns sharply right away from woods road.
Retrace steps back to parking area.

Map: Appalachian Trail Conservancy New York / New Jersey Appalachian Trail Guide and Maps

Hike description:

Temps in the 30's and icy trails. We used microspikes most of the way. We attempted to climb Eastern Pinnacles and Cat Rocks - each time we made it part way and then had to turn around. The rocks at the top were covered by a solid sheet of ice - nothing to hold onto. Luckily there is a blue blazed side trail which takes you completely around the rocky sections. They'd be fun to climb in the summer - just too dangerous now - plus the dogs don't wear microspikes :)

Our end point was marked in our book as being the intersection with the Long Path. It looks like the Long Path has been re-routed. I noticed a painted over teal blaze near the intersection.

This hike is mostly level, so was pretty easy. Footing was a little difficult. There were a lot of frost heaves - sometimes we'd step and the ground would collapse underneath us. There were a couple of minor stream crossings - easy to cross.
Parking area at intersection of 17A and Continental Road

Eastern Pinnacles - rock climb up ice.

We made it part of the way across

And part of the way up Cat Rocks (the other side was a sheet of ice)

Intersection with what we guess used to be the Long Path

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