Friday, October 7, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (10/7): Advance parking reservations required through Oct. 31 at Adirondack Mountain Reserve

outdoor conditions logo

The 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

NEW THIS WEEK

Reminder – Parking Reservations Required at Adirondack Mountain Reserve: Advance parking reservations are required through October 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. To reserve a spot, visit AMR’s website. Walk-ins are not permitted and day-of reservations are not available. Visitors without a reservation should seek alternate hikes. Hiker shuttles do not drop off at AMR.

Pine Lake Primitive Area: The gate at the former Outer Gooley Club on Chain of Lakes Rd., Town of Indian Lake, has opened for the fall hunting season.

LAST WEEK

Bog River Complex: The Student Conservation Association (SCA) recently completed several improvements to primitive campsites located on Tupper Lake, part of Horseshoe Lake Wild Forest. Improvements to 11 campsites included new campsite numbers on the shoreline, replacement of privies, rebuilt fire rings, and staining of two lean-to’s.

Independence River Wild Forest: Water will be shut off at the Otter Creek Assembly Area the week after Columbus Day weekend.

Black River Wild Forest: Timber harvesting has completed on the Flatrock Mountain Conservation Easement. The entire property has been re-opened for public recreation.

Sable Highlands Conservation Easement Tract – Barnes Pond Public Use Area: The gate has been opened for hunting season. Use of high clearance vehicles is recommended.


General Notices

Know Before You Go Graphic

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

Know Before You Go (10/07):

  • Temperatures: Expect a chilly fall weekend in the Adirondacks. With highs in the low-50’s and nighttime lows in the mid-30’s, your extra layers will come in handy this weekend. Friday calls for potential showers, most starting in the mid-morning. Sunday’s forecast predicts afternoon showers. Keep in mind that 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. Summit temperatures will be colder than at the trailhead and winter conditions may be present at higher elevations.
  • Water crossings: Never attempt to cross high, fast-moving water, especially following rain or storms.
  • Sunrise/Sunset: Sunrise = 6:58 a.m.; Sunset = 6:26 p.m. Make a timeline and stick to it. Pack a headlamp even if you expect to finish your activity before sunset.
  • Travel: As we head into peak leaf season, expect trails to be especially 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. Consider taking a shuttle (more information below).

Hiker Information Stations: Stop by a Hiker Information Station for information about parking, alternative hiking locations, local land use rules and regulations, safety and preparedness, and Leave No Trace™. Please visit us at the following locations this weekend:

  • Friday, Saturday, Sunday & Monday:
    • High Peaks Rest Area, Northbound on Route 87, starting at 7 a.m.
  • Other Stations this Weekend:
    • Friday, Mount Van Hoevenberg Complex, North Elba, starting at 7 a.m.
    • Saturday – Monday, Frontier Town Gateway, North Hudson, starting at 7 a.m.
    • Friday – Monday, Marcy Field and The Garden, times to vary

High Peaks Hiker Shuttles: The following shuttles provide safe, free transportation to select popular trailheads in the Adirondack High Peaks region.

  • Route 73 Hiker Shuttle: Runs from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. this Saturday, Sunday, and Monday from Marcy Field in the town of Keene to the Rooster Comb, Giant Mountain Ridge Trail, and Roaring Brook Falls trailheads. The shuttle is free and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Masks are required. Only certified service animals are permitted. Check the map (PDF) and schedule (PDF).
  • October Foliage Shuttle: Runs from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. this Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. The shuttle departs from the Frontier Town Gateway, dropping off and picking up at the Giant Mountain, Roaring Brook Falls, and Rooster Comb trailheads and the Marcy Field Parking Area. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Dogs are not permitted and masks are required.
  • Garden Shuttle: The Town of Keene shuttle from Marcy Field to the Garden Trailhead operates Saturdays and Sundays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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 10/07, fire danger is low 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 currently range from average to below 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.

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 & EducationHike 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.

Setting a Turn-Around Time

As the colors of the leaves change, so does the amount of available daylight to enjoy them. While fall is a popular time to hit the trails, it is also more important than ever to pick and adhere to a strict turn-around time for your hike.

What is a turn-around time?

This is a time at which, no matter where you are along your intended route, you turn around and start back towards your car, camp, or shelter.

Why do I need one?

With dwindling daylight hours, it can be easy to be caught off-guard and left finishing your hike in the dark. When unprepared, being caught in the dark can be cold, disorienting, and extremely dangerous.

Even with a turn-around time, it is essential to pack a headlamp, flashlight, and extra batteries. A phone’s flashlight and battery will not suffice for long, cold hours in the backcountry.

How do I pick a time?

Be sure to research sunrise and sunset times for the day and destination of your hike. Keep in mind that it starts getting dark before sunset in valleys or heavily wooded areas.

Estimate how long your group will take to reach your destination based on your anticipated pace. Be realistic and leave at least the same amount of time for your descent/return.

Allocating more time for your return creates a safety net, allowing for more time on the summit, a slower pace as the day wears on, and extra daylight even in the event of a mistake or emergency.


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!

Channel Your Inner-Onion

Dress like an onion! Weather in the mountains is unpredictable and can change suddenly, especially in the fall. Dressing in layers – like an onion – traps body heat in the space between the layers of clothing, creating extra insulation.

Wear synthetic, moisture-wicking fabrics to help keep your skin dry and regulate your body temperature no matter the conditions.

Avoid cotton as much as possible. Cotton holds moisture, drawing heat away from your body as it cools and evaporates. Materials like wool, nylon, and polyester are better suited for keeping you dry and moderating your temperatures when you’re moving on-trail.

Finally, always be sure to pack an extra layer. Weather changes rapidly, particularly as you gain elevation. An extra shell, down jacket, or other insulative layer will help keep you warm when you stop along the trail or at a gusty summit.


Recreation Highlight: Last Weekend for Hiker Shuttles

A photo of the Love Your ADK Route 73 Hiker Shuttle

Don’t miss your last chance of the season to take advantage of a hiker shuttle. Get to your trailhead destination safely and conveniently without the hassle of finding a parking spot – and enjoy more of the stunning fall foliage views along the way!

Please note that neither shuttle route drops off at AMR. Parking reservations are required to park at and access trailheads on AMR property. Please check for advance reservation availability at hikeamr.org. Walk-ins are not permitted.

Fall Foliage Shuttle

Take a ride on the fall foliage shuttle from Frontier Town Gateway in North Hudson. The free shuttle provides safe transportation to Marcy Field in Keene and the Rooster Comb, Giant Mountain Ridge Trail, and Roaring Brook Falls trailheads along Route 73. The shuttle will operate on a loop Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, October 8, 9, and 10 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Check the schedule for approximate drop-off and pick-up times. Dogs are not permitted and masks are recommended. Each shuttle can accommodate 20 riders and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Please note that the Frontier Town Gateway will not open until 11 a.m. Please “go before you go” and use the bathroom before you arrive. Stewards are stationed at Frontier Town Gateway from 7 a.m. to noon to help hikers navigate the shuttle system and educate on responsible recreation, including preparedness, hiking safety, and Leave No Trace™ principles.

Route 73 Hiker Shuttle

The Route 73 Hiker Shuttle will operate on a loop Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, October 8, 9, and 10 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Park and board at Marcy Field in Keene and ride to the Rooster Comb, Giant Mountain Ridge Trail, or Roaring Brook Falls trailheads. No reservations are needed. Dogs are not permitted and masks are recommended. Each shuttle can accommodate 20 riders and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Stewards are stationed at Marcy Field to help hikers navigate the shuttle system and educate on responsible recreation, including preparedness, hiking safety, and Leave No Trace™ principles.

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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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