Apparently all other hiking venues must have been closed to other hikers this weekend because most every one of them were at Harriman! Of course, this had to be our first time hiking there and the weekend was our only opportunity to do so. When DH stopped in at Tents N' Trails in NYC earlier in the week to pick up a new Harriman NY/NJ Trail Conference map, the salesperson told him he lucked into one of the last few remaining copies they had in stock. All morning long they'd been inundated w/folks coming in to pick up Harriman maps!
"You're gonna have a lot of company up there this weekend", she warned him.
Fortunately, with so many trails and variations on different hikes, we rarely ran across more than a few other hikers on each of the trails we took. Some sections we had totally to ourselves. Seems most people who opt to do the Lemon Squeezer just go out that far and head back, leaving many of the trails that leave off after that "fairly" solitary.
Our only variation on Dawn's trail was based on her less-than-enthusiastic opinion of the Ramapo-Dunderberg and Kakiat Trails as a finish. If doing this hike again, she'd choose instead The White Bar. That's what we did. Not that much better I suspect. Last 1/2 mile or so ran alongside Seven Lakes Drive and the trail itself was more an abandoned, depressing, narrow, weedy & muddy maintenance road primarily, I think, for use by the fiber optics company whose lines run buried near there.
Outside The Lemon Squeezer
Through The "Squeeze"
Definitely NOT "The Easy Way"
Hiking a new area is always made that much more enjoyable and stress-free when you can rely on previous hikers' experiences and descriptions of their hikes and routes there. Dawn & Daniela never fail to reward on both counts. Thanks again.
All in all two great days of hiking: weather wise, condition wise and directions wise. We'll definitely return to Harriman after having experienced our first maiden hikes here. So many other trails; so many other hikes to follow and many to make on our own I'm sure.