The Crooked Canes Journal


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Holiday Hike at the Hennig Preserve ~ Dec 21, 2017

Journal entry by Wanderer



What better way to celebrate the winter solstice than by hiking with friends.  That’s exactly what we did today when twenty-four of us did a walkabout of the Hennig Preserve and Homestead County Forest, located in the town of Providence, Saratoga County.  The regular Cane group hasn’t hiked with Don and Tom for quite some time so having them lead an A-Team hike for a portion of the day was a treat.  After dropping off a couple of cars at the eastern trailhead to allow for a thru-hike for Don and Tom’s group, we assembled back at the Hennig sign and quickly began the day’s adventure.  There were a few that thought we weren’t quick enough but I simply mumbled something and that seemed to do the trick - we were even able to squeeze in a group picture at the kiosk!  Finally underway we followed the yellow trail in a clockwise direction through beautiful mature mixed forest with our first stop the Bronson cellar hole, site of a homestead dating back to the mid 1850’s.  Located here are the remnants of the original cellar, with its mortarless stonework, a very intact hand-laid stone well and a number of stone walls in the vicinity.  After a short stop, with some discussion of what life must have been like back then, we continued our hike on an old, mostly flat, woods road thru more mature mixed forest with very large white pines scattered in the forest along the trail.  It had snowed earlier in the week but there was a warm period that consolidated the snow and walking was rather easy with just Microspikes – snowshoes not necessary.  There was abundant sun that seemed to warm our spirits despite the rather brisk temps.

Our next stop was at the junction of the red trail, a spur trail to Round Pond.  It was at this point that we said our good-byes to Don, Tom, Joy & Mark.  I learned later that evening that they continued to Round Pond but decided to return to the junction and enjoy lunch at the preserve’s high point where there was a little more sun.  They later hiked the light blue trail, a nice loop trail on their way back to their cars.  It was so nice to be able to visit with them and catch up with what they have been doing.  Our group continued on the yellow trail and soon we were at the eastern trailhead.  Here we crossed Centerline Road and entered the Homestead County Forest, consisting of over four-hundred acres of forest, wetlands and streams adjoining the southern half of the Hennig Preserve.  The trail goes thru a plantation forest at first before crossing the outlet of Round Pond and re-entering mixed forest.  The forest is rather dense in parts of this section as we head for Cadman Creek and the cascade that will serve as the backdrop of our lunch spot.  With so many people we were rather scattered and envied the small group that had found an area right on the edge of the creek and in full sun.  Lunch over; we continued on the yellow trail, stopping for short visits at two sawmill sites that used Cadman Creek as their power source.  Shortly, we reached Packer Road and re-entered the Hennig Preserve and stopped at the site of the Packer cellar hole – another homestead dating to the mid 1850’s.  A short distance beyond we came to “Times Square” – the junction of the yellow, green and blue trail.  We decided that we had enough energy and interest to take the blue trail (a.k.a. the Esker Trail) through the woods, gaining the top of the esker and hike along its ridge.  An esker is typically formed by streams within an active glacier that deposit various types of sediment that remain after the glacier retreats, resulting in a ridge of varying heights and lengths.  The esker at the Hennig Preserve is a highlight for many visitors because the trail follows the ridge, with steeply sloping sides along its nearly quarter mile length until it re-joins the yellow trail.  Once back on the yellow trail it was only another ten minute walk to Centerline Road and our cars and the end to another Cane adventure and a most enjoyable one.

12/29/17 - Scott Anderson added 3 photos.

7 photos



"The Group"



Denis on the lead - good thing I caught up with him and informed him that he had missed a turn and was going in the wrong direction! (Just kidding - he did a fine job)



Cascade on Cadman Creek - site of our lunch spot. (If anyone has pics of people enjoying lunch please add)



Christmas Ice Bells near the Cadman Creek Cascade



Second crossing of the outlet of Round Pond - Karen, Lenore, Kendra, Linda and the rest



Overlook of Cadman Creek with its new beaver dam - another one was located just downstream



Christmas Mice invasion. - added by Sandy




Attendee’s for today:  Lenore & Jack, Kurt, Denis, Shelly, Linda P, Karen & Leon, Sandy & Bob, Glen, Karen Burke, Mary, Scott, Margie, Gail, Dan, Kendra, Linda and Peter.  A-Team:  Joy & Mark, Don, Tom

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