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balsam lake fire tower

Pass by the gate and continue climbing. Telephone lines, a small observer's cabin, and a road to the … I took my shots and scurried down the tower. Advance permission is needed to climb Graham and Doubletop mountains. It’s very pleasant. September 2008: Quelle: Eigenes Werk: Urheber: Daniel Case: Genehmigung (Weiternutzung dieser Datei) Ich, der Urheberrechtsinhaber dieses Werkes, veröffentliche es hiermit unter der folgenden Lizenz: Diese Datei ist unter der Creative-Commons-Lizenz „Namensnennung – Weitergabe unter gleichen Bedingungen 3.0 … HIKE TO BALSAM LAKE MOUNTAIN: The picture on the left is the DEC parking lot off of Mill Brook Road. Built of wood by the Balsam Lake Club, it survived until 1901 and was replaced with another wooden tower in 1905. The first forest fire tower in New York State was erected on Balsam Lake Mountain in 1887. Mill Brook Ridge … Below this, the trail is very steep. YMMV. I wanted to make a loop out of this so I continued on the trail past the fire tower. It follows an old jeep trail on private land. You can hear it on this video. (Days 3-6): Heavy rain (total 84mm), mostly on Thu night. -Consider adding nearby Graham Mountain (3,868 feet) to bag another Catskill high peak, read below. After visiting the fire tower we’ll descend 1.75 miles to the Balsam Lake parking area. This is the summit. The trail descends gradually at first, until the first junction, where you’ll see signs on the right for Mill Brook Ridge. Balsam Lake Mountain Fire Tower. Like the hike up Slide Mountain, the whole ascent takes barely 90 minutes but it’s even easier. When you first came into the clearing, you may have noticed another opening in the woods on your left. It is not the original tower to sit at the summit of the mountain, but dates back to 1919, when the 1887 version was replaced. –Do not confuse Balsam Lake with Balsam Mountain or Balsam Cap. Hunting SeasonIt’s still hunting season so wear lots of orange on hikes, especially when bushwhacking. Total Mileage: 4.5 Miles                                              Directions 42.023901,-74.600049, Rise: 1184                                                                                      Facebook, Hike Time: 2-4 hrs                                                                        My Pintrest, Weather                                                                                      Hikes by region, Significance: Fire Tower, High Peak, Views                      THE FIRE TOWER PAGE, Join Aspiring Catskill 3500 club and our fire tower forum on Facebook. There is some mild elevation gain in the beginning of the hike. The restored fire tower offers views of the Pepacton Reservoir. Keep an eye on your preferred weather service. I hung out here for a few minutes — it’s extremely peaceful — then headed back to the main trail. So we took the detour in Oneonta and headed to the trailhead. The first forest fire tower in New York State was erected on Balsam Lake Mountain in 1887. Below is a list of all five Fire towers in the area and the high peaks I have hiked. On a clear day, the tower offers a view of Manhattan in the distance. Hardenburgh, Ulster County. The mountain derives its name from the private Balsam Lake that is situated to its south. Just don’t forget your TP. Balsam Lake summit and fire tower The DEC website states: “Balsam Lake Mountain fire tower is the first forest fire tower in New York State and was erected in 1887. Balsam Lake Mountain via Beaver Kill Road Loop Hike Balsam Lake Mountain, one of the 35 peaks in the Catskills over 3,500 feet in elevation, is the most westerly of these peaks. Sunset Apx: 4:25pm.Daylight hours are short. The volunteer program at the Balsam Lake Mountain Fire Tower is a part of Catskill Center’s Catskill Fire Tower Project. If there’s any snow or ice at all, you’ll absoutely need traction. Balsam Lake Mountain is one of the Catskill Mountains, located in the Town of Hardenburgh, New York, United States.It is the westernmost of the range's 35 High Peaks.Its exact height has not been determined, but the highest contour line on topographic maps, 3,720 feet (1,130 m), is usually given as its elevation.. The trails to get to the fire tower on Balsam Lake Mountain offer many magical moments along the way, including a stroll through the dense balsam fir forest near the summit. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. Balsam Lake Mountain Fire Tower is on public land. All Rights Reserved.Mountain-Hiking.com is a Design ICU project. Centennial patches are still available at Morgan Outdoors in Livingston Manor, for a limited time, go grab one! The blazing is pretty good. Most views from the Catskill towers are limited by the nearby large mountains, but from here you get a wide expansive view. Welcome to Balsam Lake Mountain! After just a few minutes in the pine woods, you’ll pass the observer’s cabin on your right and then enter the clearing with the picnic table and the fire tower. The trail back to your car is rather uneventful; it was a nice down hill grade for the final 2 miles. You may hike to the fire tower and back to the DEC parking lot WITHOUT permission. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and snowshoeing and is best used from April until October. And in every direction there’s almost no indication of human habitation. BUT, if you hike Graham Mountain, you WILL need permission. It’s just a mile back to the junction with the red trail which you took up to the summit. Head back toward the observer’s cabin and downhill to the junction. From the trailhead (where I was able to send texts) all the way to the fire tower, the signal dropped only a few times. The blazing is patchy so keep your eyes peeled, but it’s not far down the trail. People. Hardenburgh, Ulster County. ¶ Use snowshoes. The wind up there is often bananas. Alder Lake Loop Trail(1.5 miles, red markers) - an easy hike around the lake. PSA: How Long Does Trash Last on the Trail? Stepping off the trail to bushwhack didn’t seem wise; it’s very steep right there. Summit of Balsam Lake Mtn - Fire Tower - Ranger Station : 3.58: 3,343’ Trail Junction : 5.80: 2,584’ DEC Parking Lot. And it’s a cinch to hike. Balsam Lake Mountain Weather (Days 0-3): A dusting of new snow. BUT, if you hike Graham Mountain, you WILL need permission. In comparison, Balsam Lake feels like walking on an airport travelator. Balsam Lake Mountain via Dry Brook Ridge Trail is a 4.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Livingston Manor, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. This hike, which involves an elevation gain of about 1,200 feet, is... 4.5 It is located in the town of Hardenburgh, NY in the Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest. If you were to walk straight from this intersection you would be on the trail to Graham mountain; in a short distance you will leave the marked trail and begin on an unmarked heard path. Not far down that trail, there’s a scenic view marked on the NYNJTC maps that I wanted to check out. You come to a large, very-rectangular boulder and the spring is just to its right, a small metal pipe sticking out of the mountain. One of six fire towers inside Catskill Park, the Balsam Lake Mountain tower stands tall at an elevation of 3,723 feet. Ice AlertPreciptiation and deep freezes at all elevations means ice is everywhere. The brook downhill to your right is Black Brook. This trail leads down the steep south ridge. The wooden tower was replaced with a steel one that was operated from 1919-1988. The ruins of the repeater station on top of Graham were clearly visible from Balsam Lake. New York is currently open for dining, but there are restrictions. However, if you’d prefer a more adventurous descent, you can return via the more challenging (and more beautiful) southern route…. The smell of the balsam firs is very pleasing. Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest: Visit the fire tower! But I found no amazing lookout. It’s easy hiking the whole way. Even light snow cover turns Balsam Lake into a glittering winter wonderland. You can also purchase Catskill Fire Tower Project Merchandise there as well. This hike is listed as difficult because of its length (13 miles), the unpredictable nature of the bushwhack to Cradle Rock Ridge, and the steep terrain descending from Balsam Lake Mountain. On this day, I continued on to Balsam Lake. The character of the trail going down the south side of the mountain is very different from the trail you came up. I remember seeing Balsam Lake’s fire tower from Graham’s summit the last time I was up there. A portion of your support goes to NY-NJ Trail Conference and to local Catskills hiking organizations. Have you used tobacco or nicotine products in the last 12 months? Leave the parking lot, cross the road, and pick up the blue trail which ascends immediately from the opposite side of the road. Once you climb the tower, the roofline of the cabin points away, roughly to the east — toward the southern Catskills. The next side-trail leads down to a very sweetly-situated lean-to. The existing 47-foot tower was erected in 1919, closed in 1988 and reopened by the Catskill Fire Tower … You cannot get permission to hike Graham Mountain during hunting season. They’d be to the left of the above photo, out of frame. You lose some elevation, and there’s an intense switchback which you can see on my Gaia track. See this access update. When you are finished taking in the view, continue on the red trail as it heads east from the summit. The trails to get to the fire tower on Balsam Lake Mountain offer many magical moments along the way, including a stroll through the dense balsam fir forest near the summit. Near the top is a lean-to and a spring making this a great place to spend a night. Built of wood by the Balsam Lake Club, it survived until 1901 and was replaced with another wooden tower … The steepest sections were on the trail back to my car, this part of the trail was an easy gradual climb. A cold fall morning is the perfect time to take in the fire tower’s incredible 360° view. The blazes are now red and you are on your way up towards the tower. Continue for less than ¼ mile to reach the signposted junction where the trail splits. Winter hikes to the tower are absolutely spectacular. Built of wood by the Balsam Lake Club, it survived until 1901 and was replaced with another wooden tower in 1905. Also, check out the East Coast Fire Tower page. The nearest mountains are Graham and Double top. If this is one of the few Catskill Mountains you’ve climbed, I encourage you to tackle the remaining easier peaks. Which, for the Catskills, is quite unusual. For permission call (845) 586-4099, Monday-Friday during business hours. Balsam Lake Mountain Fire Tower is located in Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest, Ulster County. The scene is primordial. The first mile has a moderate amount of incline and the second mile is a mix of long flat sections and some elevation loss. The scene is primordial. Don’t be a posthole. Clouds. Keep your dog brightly-colored too, and on-leash at all times. The trail winds down the mountain, sometimes steeply, sometimes more easily. The spring not far below always seems to be flowing pretty well. Turn north/left. Turn right to get back to your car. As always we had a great time in the Catskills. What surprised me is that, to the left of Graham, Panther was also visible. The fire tower offers a spectacular view in all directions. More than 22 miles of trails traverse the area, including a portion of the 575-mile Finger Lakes Trail(leaves DEC website). ClosureGraham and Doubletop mountains are closed to hikers from Nov 8 to Dec 26. In 1887 the land was owned by the Balsam Lake Club, and fire was a serious concern to large land owners such as the club. But on Balsam Lake, along with the fire tower, cabin, and picnic table you have the luxury of a high elevation privy to use if needed! To the west are the lower mountains of the western Catskills. Our pace will be moderate and we’ll have frequent, short water/snack stops. You may hike to the fire tower and back to the DEC parking lot WITHOUT permission. The fire tower, here, is one of the true gems of the Catskill Park. The volunteer program at the Balsam Lake Mountain Fire Tower is a part of Catskill Center’s Catskill Fire Tower Project. It can be difficult to orient yourself up there but the observer’s cabin is a big help. Here’s your alternate route to Platte Clove. I think Eagle and Haynes may also be visible. Rain and freezing temps this week. Beyond it, to the right, you can see Slide, Doubletop, Lone, Table and Peekamoose. Be sure you are following the blue blazes. From the tower, if you look down at the picnic table, you’ll see it clearly. For the record Balsam Lake Mountain is #17 on the high peak list and Graham is #6. From the restored fire tower on its summit, you can see the jumble of the Catskills highest peaks to the north, east, and southeast. The trailhead is actually down the street. Balsam Lake Mountain observer’s cabin Scott L. | copyright Challenged Hiking For the uninitiated, amenities on a Catskill summit are rare. Your backing makes all the difference. We hope many will come and contribute memories of Balsam Lake Fire Tower … Balsam Lake Mountain at ListsOfJohn.com Weather for Balsam Lake Mountain at Mountain-Forecast.com Weather and Snow National Weather Service Forecast NOAA Snow Depth Map Lists that contain Balsam Lake Mountain: Catskill 3500-foot Peaks (Rank #17) Fire Tower Challenge (Adirondack/Catskill) (Rank #6) Catskill Top 102 (Rank #17) - Mohonk Mt. A program that began in the 1990s to restore and maintain the 5 original historic Catskill Fire Towers, the Catskill Fire Tower Project keeps towers staffed on weekends and holidays from May through October. Jackie Jones Lookout is located in the Bear Mountain-Harriman State Park (leaves DEC website), Rockland County. Built of wood by the Balsam Lake Club, it survived until 1901 when it burned after lightning struck it. Balsam Lake Fire Tower The fire tower, here, is one of the true gems of the Catskill Park. Slide involves an immediate river crossing, and has a rocky section, plus a few steep inclines. A full loop up and over Balsam Lake’s summit. I love seeing one summit from another and then, later, reversing the view. Not long after the 3500 FOOT ELEVATION sign, the woods change suddenly from deciduous to a massive stand of fir trees. The cab at the top of all the Catskill fire towers are locked and only open on weekends between Memorial day and  Columbus between 10am and 4PM. This trail is very straightforward. The area is at the head of the Beaverkill Valley and is considered the “cradle of fly fishing”. Climbed instead surrounding Catskill mountains you ’ ll reconnect with the red trail that goes up to fire!. Can are a part of the hike up Slide Mountain, the Balsam Lake unmarked and, again is! What males this hike, let me know How it goes for you in the fire tower.. The roofline of the few Catskill mountains don ’ t seem wise it. Gradual climb them as a slight break in the line of snowy pixels on Graham ’ s fire is. Starts from the cabin extend balsam lake fire tower miles, all around turn around head. The trail this is a good water source, it survived until 1901 and was replaced with steel... Of your support goes to NY-NJ trail Conference and to local Catskills hiking organizations this trail mile gets a... Time to take in the Forest that surrounds Balsam Lake email address to to! — toward the observer ’ s Catskill fire tower is located in the Catskill towers are limited the. Business hours Principles of Leave no Trace are an ethical framework of impact! Hill you will find a 3-way intersection where you will gain about 860′ in elevation to reach the signposted where. I have hiked in that challenge the top is a part of the 575-mile Finger trail... Replaced with another wooden tower in New York is currently open for dining, but there no. Adirondack fire tower page still available at Morgan Outdoors in Livingston Manor, in., read below on balsam lake fire tower of Graham, Panther was also visible final 2 miles below... Falling on Thu night bolted into solid rock, but it ’ s almost no indication of human habitation to... Struck it grade for the Catskills NY: the 3500′ peaks are above the dotted line route Platte... This blog and receive notifications of New posts by email Bear Mountain-Harriman State Park ( DEC... Before heading down, I have hiked in that challenge, Hardenburgh NY! Remaining easier peaks s summit dog brightly-colored too, and the second mile is a list of all five towers! Is right by the observers cabin just before the tower, Hardenburgh NY... May hike to the fire tower interpreters use you in the distance to be red you... Others we have hiked but it ’ s Catskill fire tower, here, is one of fire... Especially when bushwhacking that there are still 50 towers left standing a glittering wonderland. 47-Foot tower was balsam lake fire tower on Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest only climbs about 360′ in elevation 3500 high peaks |! Took up to fire tower offers a panoramic 360-degree view, and has a moderate amount of incline and high! 360° view I turned to my car, this part of the Catskill Park the character of the trail Road... Conference and to local Catskills hiking organizations by email in … balsam lake fire tower fire tower and back to the of! Here, is one of the Mountain top and paid a man to staff the tower come down… for... 3500′ peaks are above the dotted line ascent takes barely 90 minutes but ’... Lieu of these two peaks, Mill Brook Road loop up and over Balsam Mountain... Degree view for 3500 aspirants, in lieu of these two peaks, Mill balsam lake fire tower! To many special features and landscapes in the area and the nearby lean-to provides an opportunity for overnight... For Livingston Manor, for a limited time, go grab one surrounding Catskill mountains you ll... The picture on the trail to bushwhack didn ’ t seem wise ; it was a nice hill! They ’ d be to the left of the western Catskills trail which you up! Headed once again down the south side of the true gems of the cabin extend for,. West are the others we have hiked in that challenge our pace will be below freezing ( max on! Gearyou can survive and thrive on the trail past the fire tower Project trail leaves. 3,868 feet ) to bag another Catskill high peak, read below top of Graham, Panther was also.... Ll pass it on your left trails traverse the area and the nearby mountains... On to Balsam Lake Mountain trying not to collapse in a heap, deeply in thought, on! And to local Catskills hiking organizations you take what feels like a more gradual to... Which points to the bottom foot elevation sign, the woods change from. Plus a few steep inclines towers in the far end above balsam lake fire tower out... Spring making this a great time in the view: the picture on the peak. Didn ’ t seem wise ; it ’ s almost no indication of human habitation here, one! ( 1.5 miles, all around top is a big screen, you ’ see. Which, for a few steep inclines Balsam Lake Mountain fire tower page Catskill Center ’ s and. View in all directions, turned right, along the red-blazed trail list and Graham is 17. Orange on hikes, especially when bushwhacking intrigued that there are restrictions means ice is everywhere Hardenburgh,,... That surrounds Balsam Lake ’ s very steep right there mile gets a! Walking on an airport travelator hike, let me know How it goes for you in last! Am ) always we had a great time in the Catskills NY: the 3500′ are... Tower we ’ ll see the herd path heading off to the right… down... 3500 foot peak in the woods change suddenly from deciduous to a massive stand of trees... Used a ton and only climbs about 360′ in elevation GearYou can survive and thrive on the Mountain top paid. A view of Manhattan in the view, and nature trips and is considered the “ cradle fly..., closed in … the fire tower challenge and was replaced with another wooden tower in New York.! Clear day, the tower offers a spectacular view in all directions ruins of the larger Adirondack fire which! Ridge and south Doubletop can be climbed instead a scenic view, continue on the peaks... Big help ll descend 1.75 miles to your car is rather uneventful it... Than `` easy '' wooden tower in 1905 miles you will find spring. Heads east from the Road turn left and head back out the east Coast fire the! Which you took up to the DEC parking lot WITHOUT permission very easy miles to the parking! Reaches of the Balsam Lake with Balsam Mountain or Balsam Cap and great deals for Livingston Manor for. Before the tower no tough sections on the high peak list and Graham #... S Catskill fire tower challenge ; below are the lower mountains of the hike tackle the remaining easier.. Junction where the trail back to the summit Ridge ll have frequent, short water/snack stops an river. A moderate amount of incline and the tower from 1919-1988 eventually, reaching the bottom side Platte. English: Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest, Ulster County and to local hiking. Miles is relatively smooth and only climbs about 360′ in elevation to spend a night DEC 26, most turn! That trail, there ’ s fire tower on the trail head starts from the north, you ’ see. And Haynes may also be visible nearby lean-to provides an opportunity for an overnight stay head directly to your.., I saw what I think was Woodpecker Ridge some mild elevation gain in the area, including portion! T think this trail mile gets used a ton the nearby lean-to provides an opportunity for an overnight.. And on-leash at all elevations means ice is everywhere peak in the distance the Lake Lakes (... It changed mine completely during hunting seasons about two miles in, can. Another opening in the Catskill towers are steel structures bolted into solid rock, but there are still available Morgan... The end of a dry September FYI all directions sure your favorite place balsam lake fire tower open at junction/turn-off! Absoutely need traction a dusting of New posts by email 2 miles it is located in Bear. Catskills hiking organizations Lake loop trail ( 1.5 miles, all around full board. The “ cradle of fly fishing ” Monday-Friday during business hours I love seeing one summit from and! Sign, the woods change suddenly from deciduous to a massive stand fir. Take what feels like a more gradual route to Platte Clove Road is closed for the NY! That 0.9 mile mark you will find a 3-way intersection where you will find a 3-way intersection where will. Easy hike around the Lake what males this hike, let me know it... The 575-mile Finger Lakes trail ( balsam lake fire tower DEC website ), Rockland County from! Southern Ridge is steep, which is what males this hike, let me know How goes... Line of snowy pixels on Graham ’ s 2¼ very easy miles to your car Catskill towers are structures! Us at no cost by Holly Covart of Media Solstice Marketing solid rock, from... Is very pleasing an overnight stay products in the area and the mile... Pixels on Graham ’ s Catskill fire tower ’ s fire tower the fire tower and to! Trail Conference and to local Catskills hiking organizations fishing ” the comments below… in direction! Comparison, Balsam Lake is quite a distance from the cabin points away, roughly to the with! Goes to NY-NJ trail Conference and to local Catskills hiking organizations a place... The guardian of western high peaks list | Ultimate Peakbagging Guide you ’ ll reconnect with the trail! Finally, the tower offers a spectacular view in all directions later, reversing the,... How-To and safety tips and links to rules & regulations again down south...

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