Ascent of Hook Mountain on 2010-05-30

Climber: Eli Wolfhagen

Others in Party:Jane Portman
Vadim Gindin
Lena Katsnelson
Emily Bauman
Frankie Portman
Date:Sunday, May 30, 2010
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Hook Mountain
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:730 ft / 222 m

Ascent Trip Report

For our 2nd Annual Pre-Vadim's Birthday Hike, I chose to do a portion of the Long Path. Since the rest of the group (at least at the time) trusted me to make these types of decisions, I opted for the closest topographically interesting part of the LP to New York City: the northern arc of the Palisades from Hook Mountain to South Mountain.

I sold everyone on it being about 14 miles (ended up being 14.25 mi), which since we had done a 10 miler last year didn't seem too out of the ordinary. Little did they know that I hadn't exactly consulted the guidebook to see how many additional ascents and descents we'd have to endure on what turned out to be probably the hardest hike any of us had completed.

We did the trip as a shuttle hike, dropping one car at the Nyack Beach State Park parking lot, for a cool $6, and another car at the end in the Mount Ivy Commuter Parking Lot at the intersection of US-202 and NY-45 (just off Exit 13 on the Palisades Interstate Parkway). The portion of the trip traveled on the Long Path is generally covered by Sections 3 and 4 (pages 31-42) in "The Long Path Guide, 5th Edition" (LPG).

From the parking lot we scurried bake up the driveway to the Park entrance, asked the guard how to get to the Long Path, and followed the instructions. Head out south on North Broadway Avenue from the Park entrance and take your first right onto Larchdale Avenue. Follow Larchdale Avenue to its end at Midland Avenue and take a left onto North Midland Avenue. After about 200' (shortly after passing a a vacant street for future development), the trail enters the woods at a "boulder with white blazes". Follow the white blazes to its intersection with the Long Path shortly after Mi 2.5 in the LPG. From here turn right and uphill on the Long Path. At Mi 3.25 in the LPG (Mi 1.5 in our trip), we came to the beautiful open peak of Hook Mtn. Thinking fairly highly of ourselves for such an early victory we happily snapped a few photos and headed back down the Long Path.

Our mood did sour all that quickly, but after hitting six additional "peaks" en route to the Landing Hill Road (Mi 5.6 in LPG/ Mi 3.85 in out trip), we began to worry that we just dropped about 500 ft from the top of Hook Mountain and still had the higher High Tor and South Mountain to scale in the 2nd half of our trip. Needless to say, our mood and water supply had significantly dwindled by the time we reached Route 9W (8 peaks and 3.4 miles later).

For HIGH TOR and SOUTH MOUNTAIN, see corresponding ascents.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2245 ft / 684 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2005 ft / 610 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.2 mi / 11.7 km
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail
    Weather:Hot, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:745 ft / 227 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 720 ft / 219 m; Extra: 25 ft / 7m
    Loss on way in:25 ft / 7 m
    Distance:1.5 mi / 2.4 km
    Route:Upper Nyack Trail to Long Path
    Start Trailhead:Nyack Beach State Park Parking Lot  10 ft / 3 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:1980 ft / 603 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 480 ft / 146 m; Extra: 1500 ft / 457m
    Gain on way out:1500 ft / 457 m
    Distance:5.7 mi / 9.2 km
    Route:Long Path
    End Trailhead:Route 9W  250 ft / 76 m
Ascent Part of Trip: 2nd Annual Pre-V Bday Hike (0 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Hook Mountain2010-05-302245 ft / 684 m
2High Tor2010-05-301155 ft / 352 m
3South Mountain2010-05-30407 ft / 124 m
Total Trip Gain: 3807 ft / 1160 m    Total Trip Loss: 3392 ft / 1034 m

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