The Disappearing Footprints- Winter in the Hemlock-Canadice State Forest – Canadice Outlet

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February 19, 2017 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Pam's house
NY 14466

Note:  Please arrive at 1:45, park along 5107 Old Bald Hill Road (near the curve), drop off a dish to pass for our social, dress for weather conditions, bring winter boots and, if desired, snowshoes.

How did those footprints of a man (or woman with large feet) and a dog disappear? Where are the boundaries of the State Forest and private land? What happened in the early 1900s  when all the mills disappeared from the Canadice Outlet area?    All these questions will be explored as we hike from the abandoned Dixon Hollow Road through the Canadice Outlet area, ending at the Canadice Hollow Cemetery. Our adventure will take us through ravines, across creeks and tributaries, climbing and skirting ridges, bushwhacking through hardwoods and pines, and connecting with a DEC trail that will lead us to a cemetery.  Only a mile-and-a-half as the crow flies will seem like four as we wind through the State Forest, taking time to enjoy the frozen creek and snow-covered trees while avoiding those nasty pricker bushes, and playing like children.

This can be a strenuous hike for many, especially if the snow is deep.  Accordingly you may want to bring snowshoes, but they will have to be removed from time to time for traveling through dense areas that require bushwhacking.  Once we reach the DEC trail, there will be a stretch that will accommodate snowshoes.

Naturalists will follow the old abandoned Dixon Hollow Road down into the depths of the gully called the Canadice Outlet, exploring the area of the old Adam’s Mill and what I call “Superman’s Ice Castle.” Depending on the level of water in the creek, ice build-up, and sunshine, photographs can be outstanding in this area. Sometimes the creek is able to be crossed if you have waterproof boots.  A small tributary dumps into the outlet adding beauty to this area.  For those that would like to check out the Hemlock trees for the HWA, time will allow you to examine the health of the forest.

Tracking animal footprints is also possible since my grandson indicated he found an area where “something was living.”  What animal would be eating a chunk of honeycomb right now?

Tourists and Climbers will follow the same beginning route, each at their own speed, crossing the tributary and climbing high above the creek. With special permission from local property owners, we will skirt the outlet area, bushwhack through hardwood forests, climb hills, and finally drop upon the DEC logging trail that leads to the cemetery. This can be an intermediate or advanced hike for many (especially one area where we will climb a very short but steep hill)  and can be more difficult depending on snow depth. Cars will be located at the cemetery for the return trip.

We will return to Old Bald Hill between 4 and 4:30 for a social, outdoor campfire, and the indoor warmth of the wood stove.    Please bring a nice dish to pass, your drink of choice, and tales.

Directions: Follow these directions to the meeting place. Please arrive by 1:45 and park on the road but not directly on the curve.

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