Frum Outdoorsman: Rare but Possible

The wanderings and adventures of an orthodox Jew

Getting lost in the woods on erev shabbos is not cool

Posted by Frum Hiker on May 6, 2007

I wore I would never ride there again because the first time I rode there it was more of a hike then a ride. But on Friday afternoon at about 2:30 I found myself in these crazy trails off Spier Falls Road in the southern Adirondacks- about 15 miles west of Glens Falls.

The ride is super technical and unless you are in perfect shape with a 22 pound bike, extremely hard to ride. I spent about 50% of my 3.5 hours in the woods hiking- which wasn’t bad because the views are amazing. The bad part is not having a map. I figured I would ride around and eventually come back down. It was 5pm and I started worrying since the trail I was on was a ridge tail and didn’t appear to be going anywhere but across the west side of this mountain while overlooking the Hudson River and this hydro-power dam about 600 feet below me.

If you do chose to ride this trail- be prepared to hike a bit. I would say for even for advanced riders like myself- there are many parts of the trail that are not ridable. The ride up is steep and long- at the top the views are awesome- you have a clear view to the east overlooking the Northway and the Green mountains in Vermont.

I ended up on the West Ridge Trail which is yellow, I was following the Hudson which made for great views. The ridge trail riding was very technical- but great single track sections are everywhere including some great rock drops. Every couple minutes I would pass little ponds with still leaves floating on top. There are a few swampy areas which means in a couple weeks the bugs will be terrible as they always are around these parts.

By th time it was 5:30 I was freaking out a bit and already wondering how I would be able to get down in time for shabbos. I was an hour away from home and bushwacking with a bike is out of the question. I heard voices and turned around and saw two trail runners. Thank G-d I thought to myself, they gave me a trail map and pointed me in the right direction. Luckily I caught them because I was about to take an intersecting trail which would have brought me back to where I started.

I endd up taking the yellow ridge trail all the way down to the bottom- I had a few miles of road riding to do, which was a nice rspite from the bouncy rock strewn trails of the mountain I had just descended. The Hudson flowed peacefully on my left and I could hear the water rushing over the Spier Falls Dam as it made its way towards the south.


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