Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Hiking/Snowshoeing - Hadley Mountain

Hadley Mountain (2675') is a small mountain in northern Saratoga County, NY. The 1.8-mile trail to its summit and firetower climbs 1525' from the trailhead, making for a short stiff climb. The first mile is especially relentless, climbing over 1000' of that total with few breaks.

Somewhat on the spur of the moment, I climbed Hadley today on a well-packed trail, taking about 1:15 to the summit. Along the way, there are wonderful views to the south toward Great Sacandaga Lake from some rock ledges.

Just below the summit is the former fire observer's cabin, its sheltered front porch a common refuge on windier days.

Today, there was very little wind and a brilliant blue sky. Views to the north toward the High Peaks were outstanding.

On the summit, I met Nancy and Linda, two fellow Adirondack 46ers, who guided me to a second northern summit, lower but more isolated. Hadley is an incredibly popular trail in the summer months, and even on weekends in the winter. Having a second place to get away from those crowds will be very welcome. I've climbed this peak 10 previous times, but never knew this other spot existed!

Back on the true summit, I did my part for the Summit Cheeseburger Project. I had discovered this website quite by accident, but decided to help out whenever I could. On the drive up, I remembered this, and stopped in Corinth at a Stewart's Shop and picked up a cheeseburger. On the summit, with temps in the 20s, it was barely lukewarm, but it served the purpose. Hadley is only the third of 3,397 New York summits to be logged as completed.

The trip back to the car took less than 45 minutes. It's amazing how much easier a rocky rooty trail can be in the winter when it's smoothly packed snow.

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