N e w s
The week of January 31st began with periods of clouds and sun on Sunday with temperatures reaching 50 degrees in Livingston Manor. The temperatures will continue to be mild on Monday with highs in the mid 40's. Rain showers are likely throughout the day on Monday. The skies will clear on Tuesday with sun for most of the day and highs in the low 40's. Rain will move in overnight on Tuesday and linger throughout the day on Wednesday. The highs on Wednesday will again be in the low 50's. The rain disappear and the sun comes out on Thursday but the temperatures drop into the high 30's. On Friday there will be sun but the temperatures will hover around freezing for much of the day. The forecast for Saturday is for more of the same but with temperatures again dipping to around 30 degrees. Despite the lack of snow in the valleys some of the trails on the 3500 peaks may be icy. The lack of snow does not indicate a lack of cold. Be sure you are dressed appropriately in winter clothing with layers that can be used to manage the changing temperatures. Pack your favorite hiking spikes so you don't have to turn back on your planned route. Keeping hydrated in the cooler temperatures can sometimes be tricky since you may not feel that you are sweating as much as on a warm summer day. Hydrating properly will allow you to hike longer and in greater comfort. Once you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Remember, the weather forecast is only a prediction and always contains percentages. Be prepared and have a plan for the most likely and least likely forecast! Are you prepared to stay out overnight on a trail? Conditions in the morning can change drastically by afternoon. Conditions at the trailhead do not always reflect the conditions on the peaks! Variable trail and weather conditions are a hallmark of these mountains. BE CAREFUL AND BE PREPARED!
Friday: December 4th: Frick Trail Maintenance
The Willowemoc Trail Crew will have a workday scheduled as soon as there is some significant snow. The snow will allow us to trim branches that are higher than we could otherwise reach. This allows us to clear the way for snowshoes and skiers. In the meantime contact Ralph Bressler if you have some free time since he is often out on the trail cutting blowdowns, clearing water drainages or placing trail markers.
I take hundreds and sometimes thousands of pictures each year. It is hard for me to "throw out" pictures so most of them end up in my online albums. Some of these pictures are better than others and I am trying to be more selective. For the past four years I have looked at ALL of the pictures for the year and selected some to publish in print. Various websites such as Winkflash, Blurb and Zazzle provide this service. I always wait until there is a sale of 50% off or more! Below are links to the PDF copies of these books.
It is time again to think about carrying traction devices! Not all traction devices are created equal under all conditions. Some are better on snow while others excel in icy conditions. Even on ice different traction devices will operate differently depending on the amount of ice. CAUTION: The Yak Xtremes are NOT appropriate for hiking unless it is on ice on flat terrain. There are at least two design flaws which make the these devices fail in actual hiking conditions. Do NOT depend on these devices! Click here for a complete explanation.
- Instep crampons
- Full crampons
I often use Silky saws to clear blowdowns from trails and they work very well. Recently I have been trying out various premium axes to see how well they perform in removing some larger blowdowns. I have concentrated mostly on higher end premium axes both those made in America and those produced abroad in Sweden, Germany. Austria, New Zealand and Latvia. These axes when used properly are a good choice for felling and sectioning most large blowdowns and some smaller ones.
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