Super Full Moon Hike - East Otto State Forest

  • June 21, 2013 · 9:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

Note:  If you put your name on the waiting list then you will get an email inviting you to decide whether or not you are going to join in this hike a few days before the hike.  The first 12 people who respond to that email will be listed as participants in the hike. Those who don't respond to the email will remain on the waiting list which will then operate as a normal waiting list.

I go on these hikes whether or not anyone else joins in, but I need to know if others are joining as I will wait at the trailhead for late arriving participants.

Sunday, June 23 is a Super Full Moon - i.e., the full moon is within 90% of its closest distance to the earth. Thus, it should be a great night for a night hike. But I assuming most people have to work on Monday morning so a late nigh hike on a Sunday may be out of the question.  (I'm working on getting permission from the Erie County Parks Department for a Sunday night hike in Franklin Gulf Park which, if permission is granted, we can also do in addition to this hike Friday night in East Otto State Forest)

If we move the ASP Beck Hollow leanto hike to Sunday, then we could do this hike Friday night, June 21. Camping is also allowed in East Otto State Forest in case you don't want to drive home late at night (no facilities, just primitive campsites)

We will meet at 9 pm at the parking area at the entrance to the forest, then hike the Forest Road to its end point, a round trip hike of 4 miles.

The forest road is wide enough to give us a chance to view the full moon. If we were on a trail our view would be obscured by the trees.

We will hike as much as possible by the light of the moon but you must bring a headlamp or flashlight to participate in this hike.

This is one of the few hikes that will be canceled if cloudy skies are expected because that would obviously defeat the purpose of the full moon hike.

A waiver of liability will be required.  You can download it, fill it in on your computer, then return it to me by email.  Failure to return the waiver will preclude you from participating in this hike.  Here is the link to the release form: Release of Liability

Link to G4map showing the forest road and designated campsites (you don't have to camp at a designated site - you can camp anywhere that is 150 feet from a trail, road, or water.)

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  • Gary

    We lucked out with a clear sky, bright almost full moon (I couldn't tell the difference) and fire flies to light the way. The company was great - thanks to all who attended. Anne and I had a very relaxing campout and a beautiful morning to enjoy Anne's cowboy coffee.

    June 22, 2013

  • Anne M

    have to reply again to rate the stars!!

    June 22, 2013

  • Anne M

    OK for anyone wondering how much sleep I got last night. OMG I loved it...I fell asleep quickly and woke up to the birds and daylight early but continued to slepp until 8am. I was very comfy!! Those dang fears are all in my head. I think I found my new way to camp!! Great Hike- beautiful moon -and a magical firefly lit road!!!

    1 · June 22, 2013

    • Anne M

      Oh and lovely company!

      June 22, 2013

  • Nancy B.

    Kathy and I will be leaving the park and ride soon. We will see you at the trail head at 9 Mi.

    June 21, 2013

  • Mimi

    Lookin like 815 or 830

    June 21, 2013

  • Mimi

    Nancy,
    Thanks I will be there no later than 830 an will strive throughout the day for earlier. Look for a 700pm update. Mimi :)

    June 21, 2013

  • Tom

    Sorry I have to cancel. Its been a tough week and I'm going to bed early so I can work tomorrow. -:(

    June 21, 2013

  • Gary

    We had a mix up in communication so the participant list has been expanded by one to resolve that problem. I'm hoping to get there by 5 pm to set up camp and have dinner in the woods. If I have service on the smart phone I'll try to post my campsite number so if you arrive early you can stop by the campsite. You also can try calling my hiking phone - which I'll send to you all in a email -

    June 21, 2013

  • Nancy B.

    Hi Mi. Could you, and anyone else who is interested, meet at the Orchard Park Park and Ride to car pool? It is located just off the 219 at the 20A exit. Turn right (east) when you exit and it's on the left. The hike is about a 30 min. drive from this point. I was thinking of leaving the P&R at 8:00. But I'm flexible. Let me know what you want to do.

    1 · June 21, 2013

  • Gary

    hopefully we will hear some of this tomorrow night

    Coyote: http://macaulaylibrary.org/audio/55333/canis-latrans-coyote-canada-alberta-lucie-gunn

    June 20, 2013

    • Anne M

      I couldnt open this...but I am kinda hopin we don't..heart pounding...have they ever tore up and eaten a human? ok I wont be a sissy..woo hoo coyotes...lol.

      June 21, 2013

  • Anne M

    looking forward to being one with nature this night. there will be no singing out of this girl. Thats why i passed up a much more social meetup on this date. I really want that heart to pump in the forest!!

    June 20, 2013

    • Gary

      well...lets hope we don't run into anyone getting too close to nature - Friday is nude hiking day and I've heard that Zoar Valley, just across the creek from East Otto, is a favorite spot. Let's hope none of them gets lost and surprises us.

      June 20, 2013

  • Gary

    A few thoughts - everyone needs a headlamp or flashlight, and because there may be no one else in the forest, everyone should have all the basic hiking gear to address an emergency. If the skies are clear, our eyes will adjust to the moonlight.

    Although we all need a light source, we want to limit the use of lights as much as possible. Our eyes will adjust to the moonlight. If the campsites are mostly empty, then there should be little other non-natural noise in the forest. Thus, the quieter we are, the more we will experience. Remember Ralph's advice: "Good observers have the manners of trees and animals, and if they add words, it is only when words are better than silence.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Country Life,” 1857

    Nothing gets the heart pumping like listening to an unknown creature crashing through a dark forest headed straight toward you. By the time you realize it is just a squirrel your imagination will have already convinced you it was a bear on a killer rampage.

    3 · June 20, 2013

  • Gary

    1 · June 20, 2013

  • Nancy B.

    I'm driving down just for the hike. Does anyone want to carpool from Orchard Park? I would like to go earlier than 9 if possible.

    June 19, 2013

    • Anne M

      Nancy Buck is in the house. Looking forward to seeing you girls!!

      June 19, 2013

    • Mimi

      Hi! What time an where in Orchard Park are you meeting?

      June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    At the end of the 219 Expressway take a right onto Peters road, then take a left onto old Rt 219.

    Your next right should be Connoisarauley Road. Follow it to East Otto Road but note that Connoisarauley Road splits into Connoisarauley Road North and plain old Connoisarauley Road. Do not go onto Connoisarauley Road North. Stay on Connoisarauley Road itself.

    Take a right onto East Otto Road, then another right on to Hammond Hill Rd and a quick left onto Utley Rd.

    Utley road makes a 90 degree turn to your left at Meyers Road. Make that turn to stay on Utley Road.

    Shortly thereafter Traffic St (also know as 9 Hole Road) comes in from your right.

    Take Traffic street to the forest parking lot on your left (the forest road is directly across from the parking lot on your right.)

    June 19, 2013

    • Anne M

      Thank you Gary!

      June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    Those who received an email from me requesting the waiver but who failed to respond have been placed on the not attending list to allow others who might want to attend to do so. In the future, please send the waiver to me by email on the day you rsvp.

    June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    Link to google street view as you head south on Rt 219 and approach Connoisarauley Road. If you pass the "Real Stuff Galery" with the iron art work on display then you have gone to far down Rt. 219
    http://goo.gl/maps/Eh1ub

    June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    Here is a link to the google map for drving directions. http://goo.gl/maps/QcdCI

    The layout of roads in East Otto is the oddest in the world. Although it may look simple on the map it can become confusing on the ground, so please be sure to print the map and take it with you.

    June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    We will meet at the parking area at the entrance to the forest at 9 pm, but if you arrive early take a ride to the end of the forest road to get a look a the forest in daylight. If you get there early enough, park in the parking area at the very end of the forest road and climb the hill to your left (west) for some nice views of the hills to to the southwest (although the view may be obscured by the foliage)

    June 19, 2013

  • Gary

    Here is a link to some pictures I took during a snowshoe hike in East Otto State Forest in March of 2011, including pictures of the entrance, the parking lot, the pond, and the 12 campsites that existed back then. there are now 14 campsites. A few of the campsites closest to the entrance (1 through 4) may have been moved further into the forest since then.
    http://www.meetup.com/Buffalo-Hiking-Club/photos/15583802/

    June 18, 2013

  • Anne M

    I may get there a little early to watch the rise if i can.

    June 18, 2013

  • Gary

    Moonrise is 7:02 pm Friday night, so it should be well above the horizon by the time the sun sets at 8:56 pm. By 10 pm we should have a nice moonlighted forest road to walk along.

    June 18, 2013

  • Gary

    Looks like it will be a good night for camping. The campsites at East Otto State forest are primitive, meaning no water sources, no picnic tables, no bathroom facilities. Basically, just a cleared area in the woods where you can pull up a vehicle or small camper and pitch a tent or hang a hammock. Think of it as backpacking out of the trunk of your car.

    An iPood or other type of trowel is needed to cover your solid waste and to cover the solid waste of the jerks who camped there before you. Bring water as most campsites are not near a water source of any sort. A chair makes sitting around a fire more comfortable.

    June 18, 2013

  • Anne M

    I'm going to camp under the super full moon. Anyone else up for the adventure?? Bring a tent or hang from a tree like I'm going to try...Should be cool!!

    June 17, 2013

    • Angie K.

      So does this confirm what I have suspected about you? You are part monkey!

      June 17, 2013

    • Anne M

      lol...a part crazy...Too bad you too can't swing in the wind on this one!!!

      June 17, 2013

  • Gary

    Here is a G4map link that shows the possible Saturday morning bushwhack hike in white. The orange is the forest road we will hike Friday night, the dots are campsites, the blue line is the path from the parking area at the end of the road to the top of a ridge that is a good place for non-campsite parking.

    http://www.mappingsupport.com/p/gmap4.php?q=http://www.wnytrails.com/EastOtto/2013-06-21-superfullmoonplannedhikewithbushwhack.kml

    June 16, 2013

  • Gary

    On Saturday morning I may do a short bushwhack from the parking area at the end of the Forest Road - about .7 miles of bushwhack and 1.3 miles along the forest road, for a total of two miles. All are welcome to join in that hike if you stay the night.

    June 16, 2013

  • Gary

    I'm planning on staying the night in East Otto as I don't want to drive back after midnight. There are 12 designated camping spots, but if they are all full we can camp anywhere that is 150 feet from the road and water (camping is not allowed near the pond.) Campfires are allowed, but the amount of dead and downed wood may be scarce because it is a popular camping spot in the summer through hunting season. If you bring wood you need proof that its source was within a 50-mile radius or that it is treated wood. You can buy treated wood from Wegamans, home depot, etc. Purchased wood must be labeled as "New York Approved Treated Firewood/Pest-Free" by the producer. If you cut wood from your property and it is within the 50 mile radius of East Otto forest, then you can fill out a self-certified document Here is the link to the self-certification document: http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/lands_forests_pdf/selfisscert.pdf

    June 16, 2013

  • Karen P (Twin 2.

    This sounds wonderful, but my baby graduates from high school that night!

    June 16, 2013

  • Gary

    Weather report is for clear skies Friday night, so this looks like a go. I'll take off the waiting list and move the Saturday hike to Sunday to accommodate this hike Friday night.

    June 16, 2013

  • Randy K.

    Gary, Can I add a guest?

    June 9, 2013

    • Gary

      they need to sign up as an individual for the waiver issue.

      June 9, 2013

    • Gary

      unless it is a person under 18, then you can prepare the waiver (assuming you are parent or guardian) and just let me know they will be attending.

      June 10, 2013

  • Gary

    OK Randall - you snuck in before I had the waiting list system turned on - no problem. Just 10 spots left for the hike.

    June 2, 2013

    • Randy K.

      Thanks. My computer freezes when I attempt to print the release form. Sorry. Do you have any ideas?

      June 2, 2013

    • Gary

      open the form with Adobe Reader, fill it in, save it, and email it back to me

      June 4, 2013

  • Angie K.

    Oh, if you do Sunday night hike June 23 I may be able to do that. I'll watch for your posts.

    June 2, 2013

  • Angie K.

    Oh, I'm so sorry I can't do this! I'm leading a bike ride for EOC and have to start out at 6:30 Sat. AM. Have fun! I hope you'll do another night hike

    June 2, 2013

  • Cliff L

    Love night hikes.

    June 2, 2013

    • Gary

      This will be a bit more like a night walk because we will follow the forest road. It's a dirt road through the forest. Woods on both sides except for a pond area we will pass. Hopefully we'll have a clear sky and enough moonlight to keep the lights off. Maybe roust up a bear - one was taken in the next town east last hunting season.

      1 · June 2, 2013

  • Gary

    oops - had the wrong date set up - this is for Friday, June 21

    June 2, 2013

  • Randy K.

    I'd like to attend either Sat or Fri night.

    June 2, 2013

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