I've led you guys on amazing daytime adventures all over the tri-state area but it is my night hikes that you seem to enjoy the most. Why in the world would you want to hike in the dark? With your vision reduced your other senses become hyper aware and you'll experience the forest in a whole new way. You'll be able to smell and hear that bear about to eat you rather than just see him!
We're going to have a nocturnal adventure at Harriman State Park, one of my favorite local playgrounds. Starting at the Reeves Visitor Center trailheads in the Southern section of the park, we'll trek through the forest along the Seven Hills trail, follow a bubbling brook for a bit, then trek through the night forest, ascending to our destination -- Pine Meadow Lake. We'll hang out lakeside for a bit under the full moon, enjoying the stars and serenity of night, and if the mood strikes -- and we can find dry wood -- we'll make a campfire to toast some marshmallows.
A little heads up, if you are afraid of things that go bump in the night then you might want to sit this hike out.
A $3.00 organization fee will be collected at this event, your organizer is in the running for hardest working person on meetup. While everyone else is running in the other direction, I'll be the first one to jump in front of that bear when he tries to eat you.
The Important Stuff ...
• This is going to be a BEGINNER/INTERMEDIATE hike of about 7 miles. You don't need to be a world-class athlete to participate, but you need to be in decent physical shape.
• This is a social hike, the pace will be moderate. 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 -- remember it is chillier at night, 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 dinner and/or snacks, and insect repellent. Also pack a pocket poncho in case of showers.
• Bring a headlamp and spare batteries. You may want to bring an additional handheld flashlight as well.
• Heavy rain cancels the hike.
• I will distribute my mobile phone number to the confirmed RSVPs.
How To Get There ... Carpool!
There is no mass transit option for this hike so drivers are needed.
Take NJ Route 17 north to the New York State Thruway and take the first exit, Exit 15A (Sloatsburg). Turn left at the bottom of the ramp onto N.Y. Route 17 north, and continue through the Village of Sloatsburg. Just past the village, turn right at the traffic light, following the sign for Harriman State Park. Cross an overpass over railroad tracks and continue along the Seven Lakes Drive, passing under the Thruway overpass, and soon entering Harriman State Park. Proceed for another mile to the Reeves Meadow Visitor Center, on the right side of the road. Park in the Visitor Center's parking lot (SEE PHOTO BELOW). If the lot is full, parking is allowed in certain roadside areas.
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.