Thursday, December 30, 2010

XC Skiing - Dyken Pond Environmental Education Center

With over 20" of snow falling to our east in parts of Rensselaer County in this last storm, it seemed like a good area close to home to find some nice skiing. First, we drove to Pittstown State Forest, south of NY7 near Pittstown, only to find the parking area unplowed, and snowmobiles being the dominant tracks in the snow. So, we headed a little south to Grafton Lakes State Park, ate lunch in the parking lot, and discovered that today, this too was overrun with the buzzing machines. Then Holly suggested Dyken Pond Environmental Education Center, not far from Grafton, also at high elevation, and usually with some pretty deep snow. It was a good choice!

We pulled into the parking lot about 15 minutes later, to find our friends Roy and Sue also just getting ready to start off. They'd been talking with a staff person about the current state of the trails, many of which had not yet been broken. So the four of us set off following the trails that HAD been broken, and had a very nice outing. The snow was indeed 15-20" deep, soft, and fluffy, though with today's warmer temperatures, we all experienced some stickiness from time to time. We probably skied for about an hour and a half, much of it in deep partially broken snow, on a sunny blue-sky afternoon. That snow will definitely survive any rain that passes through this coming weekend.

Pictures courtesy of Roy, since I forgot my camera... :-(

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