Reminder: Deer hunting season in our area with guns know as “regular season” starts Saturday November 19th 2011 and ends December 11th 2011. Deer hunting continues after that with primitive weapons (archery and black powder). See NYS DEC website link below for exact dates on that. Please; whether you hunt, bike, hike or play: wear fluorescent neon colors (like “hunter orange” or “biker neon yellow”) so we can all see each other. The hunters in our area have an excellent safety record … but (for example) it is just as scary for them to think they hear a deer tromping through the woods only to discover it is a naive hiker wearing brown. So; wear neon! Oh and YES hunting is permitted at Hammond Hill and Shindagin Hollow and generally all similar NYS forests. Deer hunting is not allowed after sunset. Regulations are stricter in areas designated “parks” like Treman or Buttermilk for example. Here is DEC’s web page with hunting dates: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/28605.html
Archive for the Category ◊ Intermediate Outing ◊
It’s late January and the collective we are getting ready for the next snow storm. Six to nine inches of fresh fluff is on its way. It is at once peaceful and quiet, falling softly from the sky laying blankets of white everywhere, and noisy with its accompanying school closing announcements, event cancellations and the various plowing machines it sets in motion. For some it is a time to run in and hibernate. But for the snow bunny genus, it brings a gleam to our eyes signaling it’s finally playtime! One way to enjoy this weather is to get out and cross country ski. Believed to be developed in Sweden, which boasts ownership of a 4500 year old fossilized ski, cross country skiing was once a form of transportation. It is more of a recreation sport now and if you are an Ithaca snow bunny, you are blessed with a wide variety of habitats and many playmates. A great place to connect with other bunnies is through the Cayuga Nordic Ski Group.
Per the group treasurer, Joan Jedele, “The ski club was founded in the mid 80’s and one of the founding members is Tob deBoer. He was the president of the club until 2003 and still is an active member in the club.” From the by-laws, the club promotes “Nordic ski events suitable for skiers of all abilities. These may include tours, races, ski technique clinics, racing clinics, waxing clinics etc.” Having been a member for two months now, I can attest to the wonderful community the group is and the fun to be had. Group outings happen as regularly as the weather allows, which this year has been pretty much since Thanksgiving.
Community members host weekly night skis, such as that out at Hammond Hill led by Mike and Raylene Ludgate, of Ludgate Farms. Breaking trail with the local store owners comes with the added benefit of enjoying gourmet chocolates at frozen forest intersections. The CNSG also has a presence at area races and organizes trips for those interested in going further north for winter fun. In February there is a fun trip to BREIA, the Black River Environmental Improvement Area up in the Tugg Hill plateau region, for two days of groomed trails and camaraderie.
At a recent group ski out at Yellow Barn State Forest in Dryden approximately a dozen of us, ranging in age from 3 to 77 skied a 4 mile loop of gorgeous (Ithaca is!) terrain. The group divided into fast and medium skiers with the former racing circles around the latter as we made our way out and back. With check-ins at every intersection and a designated sweep to bring up the caboose, no one was left out for slowness or lack of ability.
So, what do you do upon finishing a good ski? Aprés-ski, but of course! Similar to the 9th hole celebration at a golf game, aprés-ski offers a chance to unwind, enjoy some heart and body warming treats and get to know your fellow bunnies. An essential part of all events, group members contribute goodies such as trail mix, hot cocoa and oranges. When there is nowhere to drive après après-ski, glögg, or mulled wine, makes a fine drink with a salute back to the Swedes.
Other bennies for the ski group bunnies includes discounts at businesses throughout the area such as Cayuga Ski and Cyclery, Podunk Ski Shop and Eastern Mountain Sports.
For more information go to: http://www.cayuganordicski.org/site/.
See you on the trails!
1 bottle of red wine
½ a liter of brandy or vodka
2 cinnamon sticks
2-3 dried figs (optional)
Sugar to taste
Throw the first 5 ingredients in a non-reactive soup kettle and place on the woodstove. Bring to a simmer, but do not boil. Place a trivet under the pot and allow to cook slowly for about an hour. Taste the glögg and sweeten to your liking. When ready to serve, place a teaspoon or two of the raisins and almonds in the bottom of a teacup. Ladle glögg over and serve with a spoon for scooping.
Adventures of an Upstate NY Snow Bunny
Joey Diana Gates
POB 441, Ithaca, NY 14851
firstname.lastname@example.org (607) 351-0664
Despite the vast patches of brown, mushy grass in town with occasional remants of snow plow piles of white, there is still full coverage at Hammond Hill. While Brenda reported that conditions were near perfect on Tuesday, I can’t say the same for tonight. You could still get a good ski on soft snow in the woods, but the open trails were setting up after being in the sun all day. Brenda, Pam, Steve, Mike, Raylene, Cindy, Marilyn and 3 dogs skied up the sauna trail, down R1. When we hit Red Man run, Marilyn was havin sock malfunctions and turned back with Mike for a fast ski down Red man. The rest of the group took y5 to y7 and got in about 15 minutes after we did. They said it was good in the woods except for one bare patch at the bottom of y7. Pam has been coaching through some more interesting photo poses. Notice that we spelled out M-I-K-E with the skis. With temps forecast upwards of 50 on Friday but around freezing on the weekend, conditions may suffer.
We were thinking what a great winter it has been. Many, many outings, sometimes in sub zero weather with no gear failures, not even a headlamp! Well last night, Murphy noticed us and attempted to make up for it …
Six of us gathered at the workshop, got our gear together, adjusted our headlamps and layers then started to head out. We had Tammi, Pam, Anne, Dan, myself and David who was a few minutes late. David was excited to test his new back country, light weight tele gear …
We crossed the long skinny 10-feet-up-in-the-air snow covered bridge (you can see it it the snow pics). And started a meandering route up the hill across the private land (our ‘back forty’) … David stopped to adjust his new bindings … I waited … he said “no worries, I’ll catch up” …
At the top of the ‘back forty’ hill near the sauna we paused for a bit. Anne took this as opportunity to help Tammi with her skis. The temperature had dropped considerably and her wax wasn’t right. Anne applied some softer kicker, so Tammi could make it up the big hill with out total exhaustion. David finally showed up as we were wondering where he might be. He was wearing different skis! His new gear had failed him … well the bindings were not adjusted right … rather than trying to do that in the 18 degree cold and dark, he put on his other pair of skis.
We all started up the big hill … David was fussing with his 2nd pair of skis as we headed up. Same conversation occured “I’ll catch up” I gave it no further thought - he always does.
At the top of the big hill we paused where we usually do before the long flat haul along porcupine ridge. I counted the headlamps … hmm one missing. David again. OK, let’s wait (we always do, it is sort of our group motto) … we waited and waited … no headlamp .. we waited … we grew impatient (well I did) … We decided to ski back a little an holler … no answer. I dug out my cell phone and called him: just voicemail. We talked about it some more and decided we would all ski back and find him … hopefully not lying in the woods with a busted leg!
We found him at the top of the back forty between the igloo and the sauna, walking. His 2nd set of skis had failed, he was walking home. He had tried to call me but could not get a signal and then lost his cell phone in the snow. [ that reminds me; we should carry more of those walkie talkies I have for BikeSki)! ] … David was ready to give up skiing … not just for the night “for good” … but we convinced him to walk back to the workshop where I found him a pair of skis that fit his boots.
No one wanted to climb ’sauna hill’ twice … so we went up Canaan Road and climbed Y7 and came back down the same way just for the fun of it. The skiing was excellent!
So now we have had all our gear failures for the ski season in one night all on one guy … better luck next outing David, if you are still skiing?? -m
Twelve of us (yeah 12!) skied on deep warm spring snow. Who was here? In photo Ben, Christy, Steve, Sara, Marissa, Dave, Raylene, Bianca, Dan, Brenda, Jim and myself as photographer. We did a long loop starting up and along Porcupine Ridge Trail then Lady Slipper (R1) to Y4, taking Y8 down to the stone pile where we turned right and went across the trail next to the open pit shale mine and looped around Y1, Y6, Y5 back to Y8/Y5/Y7 area and home down the hill on Y7 and Canaan Rd. We skied for 3 hours and never saw any other skiers other than our own group - almost like a ghost town up here in the hills today! :-)