Ascent of Tenant Mountain on 2011-09-11

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Date:Sunday, September 11, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Tenant Mountain
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:2756 ft / 840 m

Ascent Trip Report

A trail and moderate bushwack hike ..... 7.4 miles, 6h20 hours RT.

I overnighted at the Stony Creek Campground, located beside the creek in Stony Creek, NY, west of Lake George, in Warren County. I got an early start, picked up the Harrisburg Road in the center of the village, at the 4 corners, and drove the winding road west for 11 miles to the end of the pavement and the Harrisburg Lodge on the left, which appears to be no longer operational, evidenced by the poorly maintained grounds and the "For Sale" sign. A large historical sign reads "Stony Creek Dude Ranch, 1935", a country club of its day.
I couldn't find the the ATV Road TH referred-to in other reports so I drove the area looking for signs of life (too early to be knocking on doors on a Sunday morning). Two fellows, out walking their dog, gave me the necessary information.
My main source of information on hand for this climb was Gary Fallesen's book and Michael Schwartz TR.

The TH is the Harrisburg Road/Leon Lane (pvt road) junction, on the left (west) side of Harrisburg Road 50 yards before the Lodge. Walk up Leon Lane 150 yards to a left on the ATV Road, which runs generally south 2.2 miles to the Saratoga "County Line". At about 15-20 minutes stay right at a fork (I made the mistake of going left on the wider track) as it descends a short distance to a swampy area. Just before the swamp stay left at the next fork, cross a stream and circumvent the swamp clockwise on a narrow trail to the south side of the swamp, where you once again pick-up an ATV Road (not much of a Road really .... from here on its more like a little-used wide trail with some blowdown to contend with). Cross a number of streams on the way to the Saratoga "County Line", which you can't miss with all of the red blazes on the trees and the "Posted" yellow signs. It took me 1h10 hours to get here from the TH, I took a good break. This location is the start of the bushwack.
***** I must say (even after this climb) that I am somewhat unsure if in fact this is the "County Line". When I zoom-in on the PB Google Map the "County Line" location moves north a good distance and the Line "State Forest Preserve Body" appears. So which Line is this?

The "County Line", on a 275 degree compass reading, is red blazed with "Posted" yellow signs all the way and its easy to stay on Line with constant awareness (less blazes higher up). I lost my line a few times. The bushwack is in woods that are fairly open with patches of undergrowth and blowdown to circumvent/contend-with, on the steeper section of the climb the route gets rocky/poor footing, however overall it is not difficult.
After bushwacking for less than a mile (1h10 hours) the "County Line" comes to a height-of-land. On the left at 40 yards is a higher/small knob somewhat open but badly overgrown with tall ferns and briar bushes. I left the County Line and went over to the knob, very difficult walking since you can't see your foot-plant. I took a good break and checked my location/orientation. I believe this is the knob shown on the Google map as spot elevation 2037, the summit/hiking-route is at a compass reading of 240 degree.

I left my position and slowly made my way up the knob in the tall ferns/bushes, I stayed right/found a track going in my direction (240) degree compass, a bit of a descent to a wet area, the summit area clearly visible straight ahead. The going through here is difficult because of the tall-ferns/briar-bushes (from the knob through the wet area to where you start to climb is perhaps 400 yards). Once you start the climb the track is well defined only to lose it as I got to the summit area. I just kept going for the higher ground. The summit is about half a mile, 30 minutes from the small knob. My total time from the start of the bushwack to the summit was 2h05 hours.

Once I reached the summit I scrambled around some and found the first high ground in very dense spruce, I circled/fought my way to my first spot at a mossy covered rock with little evidence of human traffic, my GPS read 43.36776, -74.10732.
I walked northwest and checked out the area for a second high ground area (not as dense), I chose my spot at 43.36840,-74.10800.
I am not able to say which of the 2 is "the" high spot.

I descended the same way ..... the descent from the summit to the start of the bushwack took just 1 hour, I was out at the TH after a 6h20 hour day somewhat zapped.
I cleaned up changed my clothes and got behind the wheel for the long drive home. I stopped to pick up a hamburger at McDo, the border crossing was ridiculously long (1 hour).

Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1387 ft / 422 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1387 ft / 422 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.4 mi / 11.9 km
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1307 ft / 398 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 1227 ft / 374 m; Extra: 80 ft / 24m
    Loss on way in:80 ft / 24 m
    Distance:3.7 mi / 5.9 km
    Route:southboundroad/bushwack from harrisburg road
    Start Trailhead:harrisburg road/leon lane  1529 ft / 466 m
    Time:3 Hours 35 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:1307 ft / 398 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 1227 ft / 374 m; Extra: 80 ft / 24m
    Gain on way out:80 ft / 24 m
    Distance:3.7 mi / 5.9 km
    Route:road/bushwack to harrisburg road
    End Trailhead:harrisburg road/leon lane  1529 ft / 466 m
    Time:2 Hours 10 Minutes

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