Are you looking for a great winter hike. This Sunday may be perfect. There was about 4 inches of snow on the ground Thursday, enough so you know it is winter but not so much as to interfere with hiking. Traction devices and even snow shoes will give you a stable base as you hike, and even XC Skis would provide an enjoyable trip for anyone willing to carry their skis across a few gullies.
Bring you traction devices or snowshoes and dress for winter, but in layers because you will warm up. And poles for stability. And plan to arrive at 1:45 to carpool to the top. If you miss us at the bottom parking area, please go directly to the end of Pulver Rd
This Sunday, the sunset will officially start to get later. We will take advantage of the extra minute of daylight for a hike from Dunn Rd up on Italy Hill for 5 miles down to Italy Valley. We will pass through Italy Hill State Forest, and follow an old logging road on a gradual descent of nearly 1000 feet. At the bottom, a short (0.2mi) road walk on Italy Valley Rd will return us to our cars. This is one of the best downhills you will find – a very shallow steady incline broken up occasionally by various sized gullies. The trail is very even and well cared for.
In addition to the forest all around us, highlights include a small waterfall, the “Outback Inn Shelter”, and an absolutely beautiful Hemlock lined small gully on the trail down..
As usual on our Bristol Hills Branch hikes, this hike is a one way hike for Climbers and Tourists, so we will have some car driving to do at the beginning of the hike.
All hikers will meet at the parking area on Italy Valley Rd (42.626312, -77.281368) just north of the Flint Creek crossing at 1:45. All hikers will then carpool up to the top of Italy Hill.
The Climbers will drive South on Italy Valley Rd to Italy Turnpike, then up the hill to Dunn Rd where they will turn left and park at the end of the road. We will hike straight ahead on an abandoned section of the road for 0.7 mi, and then turn right to continue on the trail over to Pulver Rd where we will pass the Tourist cars and continue on the same route they are taking.
The Tourists will also drive South on Italy Valley Rd, up Italy Turnpike, past Dunn Rd and turn left on Italy Hill, and immediately left again on Pulver Rd. About 2.5 miles up Pulver, there is a parking area. The Tourists then hike north on the abandoned part of Pulver Rd for 0.2 miles and then will turn right into the woods. At 1.5 miles we hike down to the stream and waterfall, then scramble up the other side. At 1.7 miles we will reach the Outback Inn. After a brief rest at the Inn (bring an energy bar since this “Inn” is a carry in/carry out self serve establishment), we will start a long descent to the valley floor.
The Naturalists will carpool with the tourists to Pulver Rd, and will follow them to the waterfall. Turning around at the waterfall will mean a 3.0 mile out and back hike, primarily on flat terrain.
Upon reaching Italy Valley Rd, the Tourists and Climbers will turn right to follow the road back to the cars. We expect there will be enough cars left at the bottom to get everyone back up to the Tourists and Climbers cars at the top in one trip.
Total mileage, according to the FLT map, will be 5 miles for the Climbers, 3.7 miles for the Tourists and less than 3.0 miles for the Naturalists.
Following the hike, an optional social will be at the Neapolitan Pizzeria at 120 North Main Street in Naples, NY.
From Springwater, Wayland and Dansville: Take NY-15 south to Wayland. Turn left at the light onto NY 21 N. In 6.7 miles turn left to stay on NY-21. At the stop sign in Naples, turn right on NY 53S. In 1.3 miles, turn left onto Italy Valley Rd. In 7.7 miles, just over the bridge, there if parking for the Bristol Hills Branch. Please arrive at 1:45 to give us time to carpool to the top of the hike.
From Honeoye: Take CR 36 (West Lake Rd) into Naples. Turn right on NY 21S and continue straight onto NY 53S. In 1.3 miles, turn left onto Italy Valley Rd. In 7.7 miles, just over the bridge, there if parking for the Bristol Hills Branch. Please arrive at 1:45 to give us time to carpool to the top of the hike.
NOTE: Just a reminder that we will not be hiking next Sunday on Christmas Eve. Join us on New Years Eve for a 2:00pm hike at Harriett Hollister Spencer Park.