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Posted: 12/27/2011 2:17:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/27/2011 2:18:23 PM EDT by trickyasafox]
Ok all-

A few friends and I want to plan a 3 day hike sometime in May. Something where we can all get away for a few days- but we have accepted none of us are all that 'hardcore'. We are all moderately athletic, mid 20 somethings. We were thinking something along the lines of 25-30 miles? is 8-10 miles a day a reasonable expectation? Also, We are not sure where to hike. We live in Buffalo, Syracuse, and Albany respectively, so we have staging points across most of the 90 in NYS. Central NY and the 'dacks would probably be easiest, as it is equidistant for the buffalo and albany folks- but we are willing to drive a bit more for a better experience.

We wanted to 'thru-hike' and not just camp in one location while going out on day hikes. We will get backcountry permits where necessary, but at this point we are not sure what trails are worth pursuing. We all like camping and hiking as individual activities, but this will be our first time combining them in a thru-hike environment.

where would you all recommend for that time of year? (May)
What is a reasonable expectation of distance?

We can stage one car at the end of the trail and another at the beginning, so the trail need not come in a full loop.

Thanks in advance-

Mike
Link Posted: 12/27/2011 2:32:18 PM EDT
There are a bunch of trails in the ADK that would suit your needs. The Cranberry Lake Trail might be something you would enjoy.
Link Posted: 12/27/2011 3:11:36 PM EDT
If you don't find what you're looking for here, check out ADKforum.com.


They're the AR15.com of the Dacks.
Link Posted: 12/27/2011 3:51:56 PM EDT
Mt Marcy is a must if you have never been up there. Make it a 3 day 2 night by hiking in and getting a lean-to. Then using day packs hike mt marcy and skylight and coldin then a few the next day on your way out.
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 1:55:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/28/2011 1:58:46 AM EDT by tc556guy]
Are you familiar with the Finger Lakes Trail?

http://www.cnyhiking.com/TompkinsCounty.htm

Tompkins County is a three hour drive for both your Buffalo and Albany people, an hour from Syracuse.
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 5:16:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/28/2011 5:22:10 AM EDT by Tahawus]
I would highly recommend going before May 15. Black fly season in the Adirondacks starts about then. A little earlier or a little later, depending on the weather in any given year. I would suggest a section of the Northville-Lake Placid trail. The final section between Long Lake and Lake Placid maybe, but that is about 40 miles. There are lean-tos along the way on the whole trail. Other parts of the trail can be broken up into more manageable section. But that final section is really nice.
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 7:28:08 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/28/2011 7:33:12 AM EDT by trickyasafox]
Thanks much everyone!
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 7:44:02 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Tahawus:
I would highly recommend going before May 15. Black fly season in the Adirondacks starts about then. A little earlier or a little later, depending on the weather in any given year. I would suggest a section of the Northville-Lake Placid trail. The final section between Long Lake and Lake Placid maybe, but that is about 40 miles. There are lean-tos along the way on the whole trail. Other parts of the trail can be broken up into more manageable section. But that final section is really nice.

This is all good advice.
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 12:41:33 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/28/2011 12:42:22 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/29/2011 8:38:47 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/29/2011 8:52:57 AM EDT by tc556guy]
Originally Posted By Aimless:
some areas seem possible but some areas seem like a trail though a bunch of private property


Yes, unlike many trails the FLT does pass through private property.

As far as camping, I know that parts of it locally run through state parks that have campsites. I can't speak for the rest of the state
Link Posted: 12/29/2011 8:44:09 AM EDT
Originally Posted By tc556guy:
Are you familiar with the Finger Lakes Trail?

http://www.cnyhiking.com/TompkinsCounty.htm

Tompkins County is a three hour drive for both your Buffalo and Albany people, an hour from Syracuse.


Finger Lakes Trail is pretty cool. I've never seen anyone else on it which could be an advantage or disadvantage- depends.
http://www.fltconference.org/trails/





Link Posted: 12/30/2011 2:51:35 PM EDT
Have you ever considered the AT, the Appalachian Trail, its about 2180 miles long, cuts thru the bear mtn area before crossing into CT, MA,VT,NH,ME. Park 2 cars so you can backtrack. Lots of shelters and privies and water along the way.
Link Posted: 1/5/2012 5:42:47 PM EDT
Hmmm, think he'll need a bit more than the intended 3 days for the AT.........

Cranberry Lake region is nice. The new 50 Trail is nice, could easily park a vehicle in a couple strategic locations to make a nice through 3 day hike. Decent places to camp, either tent or a few leantos along the way. Some sweet fishing in certain locations. Not a lot of vertical, so perfect for someone or small group to do as a warmup. Blackflies can be down right oppressive if you time your trip during the prime hatch though.

I also like the northern section of the Northvillle Placid trail, very nice. Get a taste of the High Peaks w/o a lot of vertical. I personally would not suggest the Eastern Zone of the High Peaks (Marcy/Colden/Algonquin area) for a multiday trip for a newish group to this kind of thing. Do a few day trips in there first, during an off-peak weekday(s). Trust me on this. Excessive amounts of poorly prepared people, restrictive camping regs (read no fires), most of these trails go straight up the fall line in places(read steep) and several other reasons come to mind....

Once you get more accustomed to what you like, what you can do in a day and what is out there to explore you could spend years hiking the 'Daks w/o seeing the same sights twice.

The FLT is also a good option. Centrally located for your friends and plenty of bail outs in case someone wants an out. FLT does indeed cross much private lands that are closed to camping but it also zig-zags to touch virtually every piece of State Forest along the way, which are open to primitive camping. A very little research a head of time and you could plan reasonable camping/overnight spots and also stops to acquire provisions while on your trek. Maybe consider a section through Cortland/Tompkins counties.

Good luck.
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