Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Hiking - Dibble's Quarry and Kaaterskill Falls

Today Holly and I joined friends Beth and Mike for a couple of short hikes in the Catskills.

Dibble's Quarry is an old bluestone quarry about a mile from the parking area for the Pecoy Notch Trail near Elka Park.  It's said that the stone quarried here in the late 1800s was used for some of the sidewalks in New York City.  The quarry is long abandoned, but the stone has since been used by persons unknown to create a variety of structures on the hillside overlooking Platte Clove.  It's an easy hike, and the surroundings upon arrival are pretty unique.  We had lunch in the "Throne Room", where Beth and Mike occupied the king and queen seats side by side.

Holly tried out the "Druid's Throne", with its brand new cupholder, my contribution.

The structures continued further back into the woods, where we found a dining room table and chairs, and down the hill from the "Throne Room", an overhanging rock shelter with a fire pit and more chairs that we dubbed "The Den".  It's a very interesting place to explore.  But the stones aren't the only enticement.  There's also a terrific view of Kaaterskill High Peak and its smaller brother Round Top across the valley.  Huckleberry Point and the Hudson Valley are visible in the distance, and Twin Mountain looms far above.  Fall colors were way ahead of where we expected, adding to the beauty of the scene.

Round Top and High Peak
Heading home, we had to pass the trailhead for Kaaterskill Falls, always a spectacular sight, so we decided to stop and tackle the half-mile climb to the base of the falls.  This smaller waterfall is what most people see when driving by on NY-23A, and the trail starts just to the right of this picture.

The short walk to the base of the falls was well worth it, with more water flowing than we'd expected, and a great view of the double waterfall above.

It was a perfect early fall day to be outside, and we were all thrilled that we'd taken advantage of it with such wonderful scenery fairly close to home.

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