Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sleuthing Both The New and the Old in Upstate NY

Revisting Colonie Shale Trail(s) 

I was Upstate (NY) for the weekend for a family event on Sunday and was curious about the Colonie Shale Trails. On my last visit there I documented a bit of the destruction of the east side due to development. Was more of the forest razed?

I rode into the trail area in a different way--the second trail from the west--and spent some time riding the trails west of the ravine. Lots of short climbs and up and downs but familiar to me. I then rode down to the ravine and over to the east side.

I rode around a variety of "east side" trails eventually making my way back up to the eastern edge. Man... was I pleasantly surprised! Where the trail skirts the edge of the new cleared area,  the trail was rerouted and had even better flow. The local trail gnomes have been busy and have created a fantastic solution!
Rerouted Yellow Trail skirting the cleared area for development
Mini yellow trail markers dotted the park everywhere, but IMHO just go in and ride wherever it leads you. There are so many choices and great flow everywhere, don't worry about getting lost - just ride!
Yellow Trail Marker

The Charlton Mill Search Continues...

After returning to my parents house, I met my friend Gary and we ventured over to where Swaggertown Road crosses over the Alplaus Kill. History research indicated there was a mill here but after scouring the area pretty throughly we found no remnants. Needless to say, it was a beautiful stretch of the creek.

Mysterious Bunker in the Woods

Lastly my curiosity was satisfied by visiting the site of the G.E. experimental laboratory on Sacandaga Road. Further Background info here >

It was a little creepy, especially if you knew that nature of the radioactive work done here way back when... but fascinating nonetheless.
G.E. experimental laboratory
Close Up
Don't Go There!! - the "radioactive cellar"
An old Milling Machine
The road in/out


It was an interesting day biking in a "renovated" Colonie and history sleuthing in Charlton. As always, the quest to learn coupled with trying to see firsthand any remnants "in the field" proved fruitful and fulfilling... :-)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Pequonnock Valley - Ah It's good to be back...

I hadn’t been out much yet this year - a short jaunt up at Luther last weekend was about it so after a late start (there was a million things I had to do around the house), I hit the trails at Noon.

I was a very cool morning and some of the chill was still in the air which I think made the riding a little easier.

The sun was out, the woods were brimming with greenery and the trails were dry - Heaven!!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Charlton NY Streams and Forests

I was up at my parents and could sneak out for only short periods of time. Not enough time to mountain bike but three short treks at different times still held off any cabin fever.

  • Alplaus Kill - Tucker Heights
  • Charlton Mill Pond Park
  • Conde Creek Sawmill Site

Alplaus Kill - Tucker Heights

In mid morning I revisited the Tucker Heights spot. This is where I wandered as a kid growing up. It is always enchanting…
Clay River Banks
Clay River Banks
Mini Dam (how to cross the Creek)
Next Generation! (minnows)
Side by Side Footprints
Crossing back over the mini dam
The Ascent back up to Tucker Heights
"Hogwarts" Tree

Charlton Mill Pond Park

Charlton Mill Pond Park off of Crane Road is a charming 10+ acre spot. There are remnants of an old mill near the bridge.
Holmes Mill Ruins
The Mill Pond Embankment was probably man made in the late 1780s 
Rusty Car and Farm Cart Relics
Algae-laden Mill Pond
An Old Carriage Road
Tall Pines - I saw two wild turkeys here!

Conde Creek

Quite a charming hidden gem right under Sacandaga Road!