Ascent of Snowy Mountain on 2015-07-24

Climber: Alan Bangel

Others in Party:alone
Date:Friday, July 24, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Snowy Mountain
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:3898 ft / 1188 m

Ascent Trip Report

On the 24 of July after a cold restless sleep I got up and out at around 7:15. Leaving Mary Lou's I headed into Indian Lake and planned to find a better place for breakfast instead of Stewarts.
Its nice to know Stewarts is there with a variety of things should you need something but at the same time its not the best quality. The Hazelnut coffee I made for breakfast there yesterday did turn out to be a better coffee than I got at the restaurant though. I went to a place called Chrissy's, lots of people there and they serve both breakfast and lunch (closing around 5:00 each day).
I sat at the bar and almost instantly remembered the last series of hikes I was on where my back spasmed soon after sitting down. I decided to eat standing up instead. I wasn't taking chances when I had a hard hike behind me and another in front of me. Breakfast was good and filling the coffee, weak and lacking flavor.

The trailhead was just ten miles down the road and I reached it at 9:15, one other car was already there. At 9:35 I was on my way and another car had pulled up and four occupants, plus a baby, were out and on the trail just ahead of me. They were young and did a lot of talking and eventually we separated. Our hikes pat each other several time and we had brief conversations at those times. They were planning to rock climb the East and North face of Snowy. Apparently they had done it before and were not interested in the summit and the tower.

The first two miles were pretty easy going and then things changed. Only about 500 feet were gained in the first two miles. The trail steepened and I was tossing the idea around that if this was the 1/4 mile steep section it was not as bad as some other climbs I've done. After about a mile of tough climbing I reached the steep section. It was as bad as anything I have come across in my years hiking up here, without having to belly over huge boulders and worrying how I was going to find a way down later. It was about as steep as climbing a ladder next to your house but the trail was strewn with loose rock and boulders making it clear that anyone above you could really put you in danger if they started things falling.

Another hiker came up behind me just as I had reached an area that no longer had a marker or a trail that could be followed. I turned and told him that I could see a marker over to my right but that I was unable to move towards it from my present position. I needed to come down about 15 feet and look right for a better path. He listened and soon he was well above me and moving out of sight. I was very tied at this point but didn't want to think about not completing this climb. As the trail turned slightly to the right there were several huge boulders that had to be negotiated and as I crawled over the last one a person above me called out "You've just finished the worst of it, from here on you are good" I called back to him " easy for you to say, GOOD left a long time ago". The last tenth mile to the tower was easy but the thought of what had to be done to leave this summit was fresh in the back of my mind.
The gent that had past me on the climb came down the tower. I heard voices above, and with no good views from the summit I was anxious to get into the tower. I was in the tower at 12:00. In the tower I met Darryl and Duane they were on vacation together and this was close to the end of their trip. They were from Rochester but had traveled to Michigan and into Canada doing a circle around Lake Huron.
After some time they headed down and I started taking pictures and getting my food out. The tower was very windy, but the summit was still. I had to strap my hat down so I didn't lose it.
Stats GPS 3.41 miles 1808' to 3914' - 2106' of elevation gain. The peak is listed at 3899' but this tall fire tower may not be included.
I left the tower as I was getting chilled but had to re-climb it to call home. I was fortunate that on both towers this trip (Gore and Snowy) I was able to make the connection to Chris.
On the second climb the GPS gave a reading of 3942' At 12:48 I started off the summit.

I took my time on the way down, and continued until all of the steep section was complete. I took a short break at the same place I had stopped on the way up. The time was 2:05, not bad for covering 1.4 miles in about 1 hour 15 minutes, not bad for this terrain. The walk back to the car was uneventful both my knees and hips were achy from the last two days. At 3:15 I was at the car.
GPS - 6.83 miles 1686' - 3924' - 2238' of elevation gain.
I took off to take some pictures of Snowy from the road and then headed South on Rte. 30 towards Speculator and a planned swim at the public beach. Passing the Jessup River I decided to double back and throw a line out. On the fourth cast I was hit by a feisty 9" smallmouth, I could see other fish of the same size following this one. I stuck around for awhile to see if I could catch a second fish but I suppose the action of the first scared off all others.
I reached Speculator about 4:40 and the beach closes at 5:00. A quick change and in the cool water. I could see that one of the lifeguards had a megaphone in her hand to call me as it got close to five, since I was the only one in the water and it was beginning to sprinkle, and I was as far out as you were allowed to go, I opted to head back in.
In the bathroom drying myself I could hear the lifeguards scurrying around to close down, soon I heard "Is the old guy still in there" I emerged and told the embarrassed girl that the "old guy is finished and headed back to his car". She was apologetic and I smiled to tell her not to worry "if your an old guy, your an old guy". After drying and changing into clean clothing I was back on the road at 5:02.
In Perth I stopped for Burger Kink and my usual (2 whopper juniors and a med. onion ring), and the I headed home. Stopping in Oneonta for a quick visit with the Tesieros'. I reached home some time around 10:45.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2175 ft / 662 m
    Total Elevation Loss:85 ft / 25 m
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Stream Ford
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles, Bivouac
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2175 ft / 662 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 2090 ft / 637 m; Extra: 85 ft / 25m
    Loss on way in:85 ft / 25 m
    Distance:7.2 mi / 11.6 km
    Route:Main trail - Fire Tower #25
    Start Trailhead:Trailhead off Route 30  1808 ft / 551 m
Descent Statistics

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