Taconic Crest Three-fer

May 30, 2009 at 7:15 pm 6 comments

It was a cool windy day, with possible afternoon showers, so instead of biking, I went for a short hike on the Taconic Crest Trail north of Petersburg Pass. There are several named summits that the actual trail skirts to one side or the other, and I decided to bushwhack these and see what I would find.


There was this nice open view to the west before I left the trail for the bushwhack to White Rocks.


It’s a steep summit to the east of the trail as the trail descends sharply and then reclimbs to the ridge. There were no views, and very little reason to ever return here, now that it’s been ‘burgered.


Returning to the trail, I continued on along the ridge. The woods were very lush, with ferns and Canada mayflowers everywhere.

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Leaving the trail again, I headed for the summit of Smith Hill, once known as Jim Smith Hill on earlier maps. In the open meadows of the summit, laurel was in bloom, along with another low shrub with white flowers. And of course, the blooms of blueberries to come.  Here I consumed the day’s second cheeseburger.

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I left the summit without using the compass, thinking I knew where I was going, and eventually found myself descending the Birch Brook Trail down the Massachusetts side of the ridge, not what I wanted to do. As I climbed back to the ridge, an eastern coyote darted across the trail not 50 yards ahead of me. These guys are reclusive, and I felt lucky to have seen one.

Finally back on the main TCT on the ridge, the setting was almost park-like, in stark contrast to the brutal winter conditions of my previous visit.


Finally, I headed for the summit known erroneously to the USGS as “TheSnow Hole”. It’s the 697-meter bump on the ridge shown on the map above. Locally, everyone knows that the “Snow Hole” is actually a deep fissure in the rock that has snow at the bottom even in the middle of summer. Its actual location is also shown on the map above. The mislabelled summit had no view whatsoever, but I downed the third burger of the day here.


Having been to the real Snow Hole numerous times, and with time getting short, I now headed back to the car along the trail. It had been a nicer day than expected, and I had also largely avoided the hordes of people out enjoying the main trail.


Entry filed under: New York Summits.

Trapper’s Point, WY – Yet Again. Balch Hill, Hanover, NH (942 Ft.) Memorial Day 2009

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Wimpy  |  May 31, 2009 at 8:42 pm

    Great post.

    Especially nice to hear about some bushwacking.



    • 2. summitcheese  |  June 1, 2009 at 6:04 am

      What’s bushwacking?

      Nice cleanup work on some of those out-of-the-way summits!


  • 3. adk46r2783  |  June 1, 2009 at 6:14 am

    Wiktionary: “to travel through thick wooded country, cutting away scrub to make progress”

    It’s probably more of an eastern term, meaning going off-trail to reach a destination, though we don’t “cut away scrub”. Map, compass, and often GPS are involved. As you can see from a couple of these summits, there were plenty of bushes to whack, unlike some of the open terrain out west, thus the term.

    • 4. sirloinofbeef  |  June 1, 2009 at 1:37 pm


      I was joking a bit about the bushwacking. Anyone who has hiked with me knows I enjoy nothing more than losing the trail – even here in the West. I usually have the scratches to prove it.

      BTW – what’s a compass?


  • 5. adk46r2783  |  June 1, 2009 at 2:02 pm


  • 6. wimpy  |  June 1, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    What’s a compass?

    Now that I can believe for SLOB. Or if he even owns one, the declination would be set for Peru or the Antarctic


    I think he invented it.


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The Mission

To encourage, enable, and document the consumption of a Cheeseburger on every summit on earth.
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