Day Hike Notes – Schaghticoke Mountain

Appalachian Trail on Schaghticoke Mountain just north of Bulls Bridge CTI said a few posts back (Day Hike Notes – Bear Mountain via Lions Head) that Bert Schwarz and I were planning to co-lead an AMC hike near Bear Mountain this spring. Well, we changed our minds, and now plan to lead a group on the Schaghticoke Mountain section of the A.T., likely one weekend in June. Our hike yesterday was to familiarize ourselves with the territory. The section of the A.T. from Kent to Bulls Bridge is the only one I have never hiked in its entirety. I have been missing a treat. Oh, and I believe the name is pronounced SCAT-uh-coke. The A.T. crosses the small Schaghticoke Indian Reservation.

Date: Tuesday May 6th.
Start: A.T. trailhead on CT Route 341, 1.0 mi west of Kent.
Finish: Bulls Bridge parking area, 4.0 mi south of Kent on Rte 7.
Route: Appalachian Trail.
Distance: 7.4 miles on A.T., plus 0.75 mi from A.T to Bulls Bridge.
Time: 4.5 hrs (10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.)
Terrain: Up and down on good, dry trail. Scramble-free. Started and ended at 400 feet elevation, topping out (twice) at 1,300-1,400 ft.
Maps: Official AT Guide map (Five – Cornwall Bridge to Pawling).

Weather: Sunny in the morning, some clouding over in the afternoon.
Wildlife: Various species of songbird identified by Bert; turkey vultures, both in flight and hanging out in one particular tree in numbers (Jungle Book-style, “what’cha wanna do?”).

Photos: Album here.
Breakfast: McDonald’s in New Milford – Sausage McMuffin, hash browns, coffee.
Lunch: Cheese baguette and nuts eaten piecemeal.
Ups:
– Walking on snow- and ice-free trail.
– Frequent views over the Housatonic River and miles of lumpy, wooded hills.
Downs:
– None, not after the annoying server at McDonald’s anyway.
Kit:
– A long chat with an A.T. thru-hiker about the merits of various types and brands of boots, socks and layers. My takeaway: get a merino wool base layer. Doesn’t trap the stink, he said.
Company: Bert; various day- and section-hikers; the stink-free thru-hiker who had started at Springer Mountain in Georgia on Valentine’s Day!

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