|Quick Look - Winnisook and Spruce(from Slide PA)|
|Difficulty||Round trip||Total climb||Location||Internet Maps|
|4.5 mi.||1485 ft.||N42.01790 W74.42010||Google Maps|
Winnisook and Spruce are two peaks located across the road from Slide Mountain in Ulster County in the town of Denning. There is private land in some areas near Winnisook so stay on state forest land. The better alternative is to seek permission from the landowners just in case you may stray onto private property. Some areas of the hike are steep both ascending and descending.
From Route 55 in Curry between Neversink and Grahamsville, go north on the Claryville Road. Turn left on Route 47, the Frost Valley Road, just before the hamlet of Claryville. Continue on Route 47 to the Slide Mountain trailhead. You may also get to the parking area by driving south on Route 47, the Frost Valley Road, from Route 28 in Big Indian. Park in the Slide Mountain parking area and then cross the road to begin the hike. I headed almost due north after crossing the road and aimed for the Col between Winisook Mountain and a bump just to the west of Winisook. I made my way through some ledges on the unnamed bump and then headed almost due east through the Col and up to the Winisook summit. While climbing up to the summit, there were some views over my shoulder but none seemed worthy to photograph. The summit was pretty flat and there was one view on the lake below. After finding the highest point around, I headed back down to the col and up the bump. From the bump I walked southwest and through a col to Hemlock. Hemlock had a lot of blowdown which was difficult to get through as I turned northwest toward Spruce. When I got to the top of Spruce, I walked around as usual to find the highest spot and since there were no views I left. On the way back I avoided some blowdown by staying a little north of my original route. As I started down off Hemlock, I decided to head directly southeast toward the road and the parking area. This worked out Ok but there were a few cliff bands to work through and there were areas that were steep on the descent.