The sun is bright, the temperature is warm, and the greenery around us rivals anything you'd find in a Crayola box -- is there a better time to slather on the sunscreen and climb a mountain or two? I think not, so let's get out and tackle what is arguably the most scenic hike in the Northeast -- Gertrude's Nose in the Shawgunks Mountain Ridge.
We're going to follow carriageways and hiking trails to six different breath-taking overlooks. Our journey will take us through dense hemlock forests, over streams, and make us marvel at the crags and crevasses of the Shawgunks Ridge which has extraordinary beauty in its combination of pale, high cliffs and dwarf pines. We'll make our way to the apex of our hike -- Gertrude’s Nose -- a unique geologic formation that looks like the prow of a great ship, with massive blocks of fallen rock below. Witnessing nature’s glory from this special place, overlooking the long rocky ridges and sweeping valleys below makes life worth living.
Swimming is allowed in the crystal clear waters of Lake Minnewaska, if we finish the hike early we can rejuvenate ourselves with a swim -- bring a bathing suit just in case.
A $2.00 organization fee will be collected at this event, your organizer is in the running for hardest working person on meetup.
The Important Stuff ...
- This is going to be an INTERMEDIATE hike of about 8 miles. You don't need to be a world-class athlete to participate, but you need to be in decent physical shape as this is one of the more challenging treks in area with a bit of elevation gain and a few rock scrambles. We will be out all day so leave your afternoon/evening open.
- This is a social hike, the pace will be moderate -- we'll be stopping to take in the views and smell the flowers. If you yearn to channel your inner Mountain Goat and feel the need to race everyone to the top of the mountain, this is not the hiking trip for you.
- Dress in layers of non-cotton clothing, wear hiking boots or trail shoes (I wouldn't recommend sneakers but that is at your discretion), a hat, bring 2-3 liters of fluid, a packed lunch and/or snacks, sunscreen, and insect repellent.
- There is a parking fee of $8.00 per car.
- Rain cancels the hike.
- No guests allowed, sorry.
- RSVP only if you seriously plan to attend as space is limited.
- I will distribute my mobile phone number to the confirmed RSVPs two days before the event. Do not leave home without it.
How To Get There ...
Take the New York State Thruway to Exit 18 (New Paltz). After paying the toll, turn left onto Route 299 and continue west through the Village of New Paltz. When you cross the bridge over the Wallkill River at the west end of the village, continue ahead on Route 299 (do not turn right towards the Mohonk Mountain House). In another 5.5 miles (from the Wallkill River bridge), Route 299 ends at a T intersection with Route 44/55. Turn right here and follow Route 44/55 as it negotiates a very sharp hairpin turn and climbs to pass under the Trapps Bridge (a steel overpass). Continue for about three miles past the Trapps Bridge to the entrance to Minnewaska State Park, on the left side of the road. A parking fee of $8.00 is charged at the gatehouse. Continue uphill for 0.4 mile to the parking area at Lake Minnewaska, the UPPER one nearest the lake.
Please post if you are driving and can pick up passengers (how many and from where), If you need a ride, please be proactive and contact a driver directly. Passengers, as a courtesy you should chip in for gas, tolls, and coffee for the driver.
This hike is cross-posted in Evenings and Weekends in New York City. Check there when trying to set up a carpool http://www.meetup.com/E-W-N-Y-C/events/126647952/