The Crooked Canes Journal


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Goodnow Mountain ~ Apr 13, 2012

Journal entry by Wanderer



Change – not everyone likes it. During our working careers we all had to put up with it so it was with that in the back of my mind I had to make a decision whether to leave the accustomed CC Thursday schedule alone or move the hike to Friday the 13th – a possible bad omen? Monitoring the weather forecast all week it became apparent that the weather people were unified on predicting cloudy skies with rain/snow showers and wind for Newcomb – but would they be right? They have a less than stellar record when it comes to forecasting weather and only a marginally better one reporting it the day after. Hey - we are retired – we don’t have to drive an extra hour just to get wet so the decision was made to postpone the hike to Friday. Secretly, I was happy to see the rain/snow showers on Thursday and that was in Greenfield; checking the weather in Newcomb several times during the day also supported my decision so I felt relieved and looked forward to Friday.

Waking up to blue skies and cool temperatures I knew the attendees were in for a treat today. Goodnow Mountain isn’t a very tall mountain, only 2600’, but from its fire tower summit the views are expansive – on a clear day. I had asked everyone to let me know if they were planning to attend so it wasn’t a surprise to have a total of seven people at the WCMC or the five additional people at the Black Bear Restaurant in Pottersville. With visiting reserved for the ride and hike we were on our way and on schedule.

I never tire of the drive from Pottersville thru Olmsteadville to Minerva; it is like time has stood still. Seeing the Minerva Town Hall reminded me of when I used to audit this and other tiny municipalities in the North Country and passing Murdie’s General Store – the Price Chopper of the area – another reminder of the slower pace of the area. The remaining drive from Minerva to Newcomb gives the visitor a small glimpse into just how vast a forested area we are in with only an occasional side road to a camp. Continuing west, twelve miles from Minerva, we pass thru Aiden Lair and the historical marker denoting the approximate location where, in 1901, Teddy Roosevelt became president after the death of President McKinley. The original Aiden Lair Lodge is across the road from the decaying building that is seen in back of the sign but all that remains is the stone foundation. Enough of the side tracking – back to the hike.

We arrived at the trailhead parking lot to find it empty of cars and on the eastern edge the last remaining snow from the season past. A quick picture and we were on our way at 10:30. The trail was in very good condition, well manicured and only a couple of blowdowns on the 2 mile length and nearly 1000’ gain. As always, people leapfrogged, taking turns visiting on the way and enjoying the spring like weather – with the temperature in the mid 50’s and bright blue skies. I was surprised on how many people in the group had not hiked Goodnow before and was anxiously awaiting reaching the summit to hear their first impressions. Arriving at the top and hearing the word “wow” more than once meant I had done my job and everyone was going to have a good memory. Although we didn’t hear a whistle our watches showed noon – perfect timing. It wasn’t difficult to find a seat on the large rocky area under and near the fire tower and the sunshine was abundant so out came the sunscreen. Some chose to explore a little, others were hungry and took out their lunches and some couldn’t wait to climb the fire tower and take in the expansive views in all directions.

It wasn’t long before I ventured to the top of the tower and pointed out some of the landmarks that I knew to whoever was interested. It was made easier because the High Peaks to the north had received a solid coating of snow recently and they stood out like huge ice cream cones, contrasted against the blue skies. McNaughton, Mt. Marshall, Algonquin, Iroquois, Colden, Redfield, Skylight, Marcy, and Haystack to name a few. In the foreground looking north was the hump of Couchsachraga and to its east Panther and Santanoni. Immediately in front of us was Rich Lake and a good view of its large beach on its east shore. Looking southeast was Vanderwhacker Mt., and to the southwest Blue Mountain. Bodies of water and bogs dotted the view no matter which direction you looked.

The sun was warm and everyone had settled in – except for Peter Wood – he was inspecting the ranger’s cabin and some recent vandalism to one of the windows. Not having a tape measure he used a branch to mark off the dimensions to drop it off at the Adirondack Interpretive Center (AIC) on the way home so that they could promptly do the repair. It was difficult to announce the need for us to think about leaving but an hour and a quarter seemed long enough so I used the excuse for a group picture to get everyone to assemble and then suggest we start down. To my surprise the group had descended only a few hundred feet before stopping again at an overlook to take in some more sunshine and test out the bench, strategically located for a good view and perhaps the contemplation of life. We finally got going again and a little over an hour later had reached the parking lot, meeting a few people on their way up. Of course, as part the memory of the hike, Fran wanted to gather some rocks for her flower beds and managed to convince Peter Wood and myself to assist her in her “mining” operation on the way down.

Normally, we would make a beeline back but we decided to stop at the AIC (formerly known as the Visitor Interpretive Center administered by the APA but now operated by SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF)) for a bathroom break and for Peter to submit his plans for the replacement of the window at the rangers cabin. They were approved and we were on our way again but not before seeing several colonies of coldfoots flowers on the edges of the parking lot and walkway (Pretty Little Yellow Flowers to me).

Thanks to Tom, Peter and Donna Wood, Karen Burka, Jim Israel, Linda, Ken, Don, Jim Ralston, Fran, and Dave for attending another great CC outing.

Peter

4/14/12 - Wanderer . added 11 photos.

4/14/12 - Ken Gericke added 8 photos.

19 photos



Group at the Parking Lot From L to R: Peter, Jim Israel, Dave, Don, Fran, Tom, Donna, Ken, Karen Burka, Jim Ralston and Linda - by Wanderer



Octopus Tree - by Wanderer



This is just the foot - imagine the size of the bird! - by Wanderer



High Peaks L to R: Wallface, Iroquois, Algonquin, Colden, Marcy, Skylight, Haystack and more - by Wanderer



High Peaks Panorama - by Wanderer



Rich Lake and Mountains Looking North - by Wanderer



Looking Southeast - Vanderwhacker Mt dominating - by Wanderer



Looking Southwest with Blue Mt on the horizon - by Wanderer



On the Tower - by Wanderer



Goodnow Firetower - by Wanderer



Last Ice of the season! - by Wanderer



Adk High Peaks...we sure live in a beautiful place! - by Ken



Ranger cabin on Goodnow Mtn summit - by Ken



Linda and Fran enjoying the sun. - by Ken



Jim Ralston and Karen Burka taking a little breather. - by Ken



AHA!...an elfette!! - by Ken



Nope...it's Fran searching for rocks for her garden. - by Ken



I'm sure the North Pole and Santa's Workshop is around here somewhere!? - by Ken



Mt Marcy from the village of Newcomb. - by Ken



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