Friday, October 28, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (10/28): Little Moose Lake Outlet crossing difficult to navigate due to beaver activity

outdoor conditions logoThe following are only the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for a full list of notices, including seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information


Moose River Plains Wild Forest:

  • Wilson Ridge Trail – The Little Moose Lake Outlet crossing is difficult to cross due to beaver activity.
  • Otter Brook Trail – Fording the Otter Brook may be difficult during periods of high water. The trail east of Otter Brook is overgrown and blown down trees may impede travel.

Adirondack Rail Trail: DEC anticipates upcoming work and maintenance on sections of the future Adirondack Rail Trail that will require closures. Details will be provided on the rail trail webpage as they become available. Please respect posted signage and barricades in work areas and email with questions.


Boreas Ponds Tract: A temporary bridge was installed over the LaBier Flow Dam on Gulf Brook Road in the Boreas Ponds Tract, restoring access to the Four Corners Parking Area at the terminus of Gulf Brook Road for pedestrians and motorists.

High Peaks Wilderness: Per the conservation easement agreement with Elk Lake Lodge, the Gate at Clear Pond is closed to Public Motor Vehicles and will not open until after mud season in May of 2023. Hikers will need to park at the Upper Elk Lake Road Parking Lot on the west side of the Elk Lake Road approximately 2.3 miles south of the Elk Lake Parking Lot and Trailhead. From the evening of October 21 until the morning of December 5, no hikers may enter the Elk Lake Conservation Easement.

Blue Ridge Wilderness: The bridge that crosses the Cascade Pond outlet is damaged and unstable. Hikers should be prepared to ford the outlet or cross elsewhere.

General Notices

Know Before You Go Graphic

Visit the main Adirondack Backcountry Information page for more trip-planning resources.

Know Before You Go (10/27):

  • Temperatures: It’s shaping up to be a mild fall weekend in the High Peaks. Temperatures in the region call for daytime temperatures between 50 and 60 degrees with nighttime lows in the low to mid-30’s and warming slightly throughout the weekend. As always, these temperatures are estimates for base elevations. Always anticipate colder or wintery conditions at high elevations. Weather changes quickly in the mountains, even when sunny skies are expected. Carry extra layers, rain gear, and be prepared to adapt to changing conditions. Traction devices are recommended for anyone planning on hiking at elevation this season.
  • Water crossings: Never attempt to cross high, fast-moving water, especially following rain or storms. If there is rain forecast during the day, be mindful of how water crossings might swell between your first crossing and your return trip.
  • Sunrise/Sunset: Sunrise = 7:28 a.m.; Sunset = 5:48 p.m. Make a timeline and stick to it. Pack a headlamp even if you expect to finish your activity before sunset.
  • Travel: Expect trails to be busy. Plan on arriving at your destination early and have several back-up plans in place in case parking at your desired location is full. Check @NYSDECAlerts on Twitter for real-time updates on parking lot status.

Check the Weather: Check the forecast for your destination and pack and plan accordingly. Check the National Weather Service Northern Adirondacks and Southern Adirondacks Mountain Point Forecasts for select summit forecasts. Check both daytime and nighttime temperatures and remember that temperatures will drop as you gain elevation.

Fire Danger: As of 10/27, fire danger is moderate in the Adirondacks. Please use caution, follow local guidelines, and avoid open fires if possible. Check the fire rating map.

Water Conditions: Water levels throughout the Adirondack region are average for this time of year. Check the USGS Current Water Data for New York for stream flow of selected waters. Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs aka lifejackets) are strongly recommended.

Hiker Information Stations & Hiker Shuttles: Hiker Information Stations and Hiker Shuttle Systems have concluded operations for the 2022 season. Thank you to all who visited a station or took a shuttle to your trailhead destination.

No Overnight Camping at Trailheads: Please note that overnight camping is not permitted at trailheads or other roadside locations where a camping disc is not present. This includes individuals sleeping in cars, vans, and campers. Campers should seek out designated roadside campsites marked with a camp here disc or campgrounds.

Ticks: Wear light-colored clothing with a tight weave to spot ticks easily. Wear enclosed shoes, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt. Tuck pant legs into socks or boots and shirt into pants. Check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors. Consider using insect repellent. Stay on cleared, well-traveled trails and walk in the center of trails. Avoid dense woods and bushy areas. Additional tips for tick prevention.

Bear Canisters Required: NYSDEC requires the use of bear-resistant canisters by overnight users in the Eastern High Peaks Wilderness between April 1 and November 30. NYSDEC encourages campers to use bear-resistant canisters throughout the Adirondack backcountry. Bear canisters should be used to store all food, food garbage, toiletries, and other items with a scent. Canisters should be stored a minimum of 100ft from tents, lean-tos and cooking sites and kept closed whenever they are not being accessed. Learn more about bear canisters and avoiding human-bear conflicts.

Adirondack Mountain Reserve: Parking reservations will be required May 1 through Oct. 31 for single-day and overnight access to the parking lot, trailheads, and trails located on the privately owned, 7,000-acre AMR property in the town of Keene in the High Peaks region. For a list of frequently asked questions and to register, visit AMR’s website.

Safety & Education

Hike Smart NY Poster Summer

Fall is here! Whether you’re going for a hike, a bike, a paddle, or fishing, Hike Smart NY can help you prepare with a list of 10 essentials, guidance on what to wear, and tips for planning your trip with safety and sustainability in mind.

How To: Prepare for Fall Hikes

Fall weather and trail conditions can vary drastically. Though the peak of fall foliage season is behind us, preparing properly for hikes this season remains just as important.

Dwindling daylight hours, changing weather, and winter conditions at high elevations are all important factors to consider when planning your next outing this season.

To help you remember it all, check out NYS DEC’s new video on preparing for fall hikes to learn more about how you can stay safe and have fun on the trail.

Leave No Trace

Leave No Trace 2021 Partner Logo

Follow the Seven Principles of Leave No Trace to maintain minimal impact on the environment and the natural resources of the Adirondacks. Use proper trail etiquette to ensure an enjoyable experience for yourself and others and tread lightly!

Stick with the Stove

Use a camp stove for cooking at your campsite. Stoves are faster and easier to cook on than campfires and will create less impact at your tent site.

When it’s time to use that camp stove, be sure to make the “Camping Triangle” and try to find a comfortable space to cook at least 100 feet from where you plan to sleep that night.

If possible, reserve fires for emergencies only. If you do choose to have a fire, be sure to follow local guidelines and try to minimize your campfire impact as much as possible.

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Information attributed to NYSDEC is taken from press releases and news announcements from New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation.

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