Posts filed under ‘Snowshoeing’
Blue Cut Nature Center’s name originates from the construction of the railroad in the 1840s. They cut into Blue Vernon Shale. The 40 acres of land have several trails winding through red pine, mixed hardwoods and wetlands.
Blue Cut Nature Center offers trail has three self-guided trails. There is a small teaching shelter, picnic tables and restroom facilities. The “Nature Center” would be better called a preserve as there is no center on the property or elsewhere.
Train tracks run right through the nature center. If you love train-watching, you can watch up close while still on the trail. While I was hiking along the wetlands I was able to see the train pass close by the woods trail, then stop for quite a while at a location across the pond.
The water was frozen while I was hiking, creating another nice trail through the wetlands. Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are allowed as snow permits. Biking is not allowed. This is a perfect picnic spot and nice for young kids as the trails are not too long.
Hours: Grounds open dawn to dusk.
Buildings: Small lean-to and an outhouse (bathroom)
Picnic Area: 5 Tables for picnics and 3 charcoal grills available
Blue Cut Nature Center is located on State Route 31 in the Town of Newark in Wayne County.
At the furthest eastern side of the Finger Lakes is a little slice of the Adirondacks. The oldest county park, Highland Forest is a mini mountain, featuring 20 miles of trails, 11 of which are groomed and track set daily, offering a variety of challenges for many different levels of skiing ability.
Park maps are available at Skyline Lodge. During ski season the Adirondack-Style Skyline Lodge serves food and drink on weekends. Trail Map
Ski lessons are available, weather permitting, Saturdays & Sundays, mid December – mid March and daily during school breaks.
What else can you do at Highland Forest?
Highland Forest trails offers all levels of snowshoers a chance to enjoy the forest on 5 trails; a 1 mile loop, 2 mile loop, 3.6 mile loop, 7.75 and a 9 mile loop.
In the summer there is no better place to get a great workout than Highland Forest’s mix of country road, mountain trail and backwoods trails. Mountain Biking trails are open May 1 – October 31.
Visit the Pioneer Museum
One of the park’s most famous attractions is the Pioneer Museum. The museum is run by the Fabius Historical Society and focuses on the historic Skaneateles Turnpike, a tollroad that once brought travelers and settlers from Plainville, in the east near the Cherry Valley Turnpike to Skaneateles.
An early snowfall with a twenty degree drop in temperature. I hear shovels and snowblowers at work. Time to layer up, grab my skis and enjoy Corbett’s Glen.
At the end of my street is a spur trail that takes me into a lovely park called Corbett’s Glen. When Mr Corbett lived here, in the fifties, he mowed a ball field for my sister and brothers to play on. Now it’s a Brighton town park with two miles of paths. The skiing here is some of the best in the county. Although the trails are not groomed like Mendon Ponds, the snow is often here for a week or two longer than any other park.
As you travel through the park you may hear three or four trains pass. Take notice as this is the famous New York Central Line. These tracks are where Abraham Lincoln’s body travelled as it was transported from Washington DC to Springfield Ill for burial. The train passed through the glen area most likely in the night of the 26th of April of 1865, as it left Albany April 25, at 10pm, and arrived in Buffalo, April 27, at 7 a.m., traveling at 20 MPH. Lincoln’s funeral train was the first national commemoration of a president’s death by rail.
The north-west side of the glen has a Parking lot facing Penfield Road for easy access. The southern side can only be accessed by parking on Glen Road, off 441, and walking under the railroad trestle bridge. Two miles of Trails loop in a circle around both sections of the glen.
My Mom told me years ago that the part of the glen nearest Penfield Rd would never be developed because the Tobin Meat packing plant had used it as a dump during the war. She was convinced the ground was contaminated. My family’s first home was built on Dale Road (formerly an orchard) as soon as construction began after the war. I’ve never read this information anywhere else to verify.
The paths wind through the woods, full of Bittersweet in the fall, and the prehistoric looking Pileated WoodPecker. There are some unusual geological features: eskers, and moraines. (eskers are what give the park trails their dramatic pitch and slope. Rivers on the ice sheet would sometimes bore a hole and flow under the ice in a winding tunnel. When the glacier and water were gone these stream beds looked like low snaking ridges of rubble.)
Today the trails are busy all day with dog walkers, families, fishermen, photographers, runners and in the winter, snowshoers and skiers. Allen Creek winds through the southern edge of the park with lovely waterfalls. There are board walks to traverse the swampy areas, a picnic table and benches and boulders along the trails for resting.
It’s nice to take a hike, even nicer when you have an experienced guide to share everything you would ever want to know about the plants and the history of the area.
I took a hike with the Penfield Trails Committee to learn more about Lucien Morin Park, aka the Ellison Park Wetland aka The Rifle Range Trail. The Rifle Range Trail is so named because it passes what remains of a rifle range and pistol range formerly used by the National Guard and State Police, during WWII.
At normal water levels both Hemlock and Canadice have limited shoreline. Left alone, the forest grows right to the water’s edge. However, after a long dry summer, the lake level drops, creating a generous shore with some startling views.
Great article in the Albany Times Union about winter fun in the Ithaca area
Situated in a valley on the southern tip of Cayuga Lake, about a three-hour drive from Albany, the city’s streets slope steeply toward the water. There are more than 100 waterfalls and gorges within 10 miles of Ithaca, leading to the local slogan, “Ithaca is Gorges.”
Besides great food, beer and gorges sites, Ithaca has a great music scene.
My idea of a GREAT day is to be able to run two hours of solid trail. That’s not always so easy to find in the suburbs, but Webster New York, is definitely Trail Town. A joint effort between Friends of Webster Trails, The Town of Webster, The Genesee Land Trust, and the Monroe County Parks has created a huge network of connected trails and my perfect run