Plan: I will drive the ~90 minutes and park on Shindagin Hollow Road, in Caroline, NY. I'll find a place to park, maybe at MP 6.3 of FLTC map M18, where I left off hiking from the east a few years ago.  Then I will hike West to the White Church Road, MP 3.0, and return to my car. This will be 6.6 miles hiking, round trip, and should take less than 3 and a half hours, with no trouble.

Well, I did all that, except I parked at Braley Hill Road, which was better parking, and about in the middle of the planned hike. It was perfect. I was hiking at 0600, and it was barely light enough to hike without my headlamp, so I left it in the car. It was 39 when I started and 37 when I finished. I signed into the trail register and got going.

I tried getting to the parking spot on Shindagin Hollow road from both ends, but it is not maintained and the frost was still heaving the road up. Since the trail crossed Braley hill and it was navigable in my Prius, I decided to park there.

It was very pleasant walking to the east. The ground is almost dry enough that you don't tear it up too much walking. I had only a very light daypack, a Camelbak Aqua Day with 3 liters of water and an orange, 10 essentials, etc. I also carried my Garmin Oregon 550, but I didn't see anything to photograph. And my Garmin GPSMAP 62s with it's antenna on my top backpack shoulder strap.

Because my knee and leg are so sore, I didn't make very good time. At the east end of my first leg, there is a somewhat steep downhill to White Church Road and a brook crossing that required a jump (this time of year). According to my field notes I was 53:19 moving time to travel 1.76 miles. It was 0702 when I turned. I didn't take any more measurements until I got back to the car at 0927, where I was 3:09 moving time and 6.66 miles.

I did note that when the trail guide (map) says there is a steep climb, it is very true. The east to west leg shows 748' of ascent and 883' of descent. Almost all of that was at either end, within less than a mile. Of course, the barometer was dropping fast during this hike. It did rain on the last leg from White Church Road back to the car.

Total moving time was 3:10. Total distance was 6.66 miles.

I was very glad to have completed map M18.

2011 April 16 FLT