Day Hike Notes – Breakneck Ridge

Storm King Mountain on another day, courtesy of Ahodges7, Creative Commons

Storm King Mountain on another day, courtesy of Ahodges7, Creative Commons

I am going to experiment with day hike reports in a format similar to my Pemigewasset trail notes. They may even be of use to someone. So here goes with a Halloween hike in Hudson Highlands State Park. It was an Appalachian Mountain Club hike, complete with leader, so I had no need to navigate.

The views fell so short of potential that I may go back on Tuesday if the weather is good. My youngest is off school for Election Day, and I am sure she would much rather take a very strenuous hike than hang out at home with a book and Halloween candy.

Start & Finish: Parking area on NY 9D, 2.0 mi north of Cold Spring.
Route: Breakneck Ridge and Notch trails out, Wilkinson Memorial return.
Distance: 5.5 mi approx.
Time: 4.5 hrs (9:30 – 2:00)
Terrain: Rough – steep scrambles; many short ups and downs; false summits. Mostly wooded with several bare summits.
Map: NY-NJ Trail Conference East Hudson Trails (#102)
Link(s): NY-NJ Trail Conference (not exactly the same hike)

Weather: Mild down below. Chilly in the blowing mist on the ridges.
Wildlife: None that I remember.

Photos: None (too much mist and conversation).
Breakfast: McDonald’s in Fishkill – Sausage McMuffin, hash browns, coffee.
Lunch: On rocks at 1,200 ft – steak baguette, apple, old trail mix.
Ups:
–  Fantastic views of Hudson River, including Storm King Mtn looking stormy.
–  800-foot clamber right at the start to get the heart pumping.
Downs:
–  Fantastic views of Hudson blurred by mist. Views from tops unavailable.
–  Despite months of dry weather, some boulders quite slick. Breakbutt Ridge for a few of us.
Kit: Poles a hindrance on scrambles. Definitely a day for layers to put on and peel off.
Company: An entertaining AMC group of seven – five guys, two gals.

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