Sunday I also opted to stay close to home for my hike of the day. My plan was to hike Big Hollow road (jeep road) to the summit of Prospect Mountain, then bushwhack to Black Spruce Mountain. I've hiked Big Hollow before. I've even done it at night with a headlamp. In the winter, this route is a snowmobile route.
The State recently acquired a parcel of land that includes the summit of Black Spruce Mountain; hence my reason for wanting to visit it.
I parked on the east side of the culvert tunnel beneath I87. In the summer I drive through the tunnel and park on the west side. Snowmobiles had tracked out Big Hollow, but I didn't see any on this day.
0.2 miles into Big Hollow Road, there is a nice waterfall on Big Hollow Brook. This is followed by an old dam and a series of water slides.
|Big Hollow Road|
The spruce give way to hardwoods higher on the trail.
At the parking lot for Prospect Mountain, I turned SW and went past a series of radio towers.
The snow at this point was over 2 feet deep. My dog Rev was having difficulty in the deep powder.
I was about 0.3 miles from the summit of Black Spruce. I estimated that it would probably take an hour to reach the summit with the conditions I was facing. I was also unsure if the dog could make it. I decided to save Black Spruce for another day.
It was quite pretty at my turnaround point. All the snow was still stuck to the trees. I stopped for a bit to just enjoy my surroundings.
|Late fall hiking conditions!|
|Our turnaround point...|
|Lots of branches on this pine!|
Once back at the parking lot for Prospect Mountain, Rev and I took the short path to the summit. We had the peak to ourselves; no snowmobiles, no people, and quite different from summertime.
|The Prospect Mountain parking lot|
|Looking towards the Narrows from Prospect Mountain|
|The summit pavilion|
|Lake George down below|
|Million Dollar Beach|
After Prospect Mountain, I backtracked down Big Hollow Road to the car.
Hike Distance: 8 miles
Hike Time: 3 hours, 45 minutes
Total Vertical Gain: ~ 1400'
|The route (Click image to enlarge)|