Sunday, February 1, 2009
From the Internet to Mohonk
One of the joys of cross-country skiing in the Shawangunks, thanks to the artful design of the old carriageways that become ski trails in the winter, is the combination of big vistas and intimate spots of beauty. Both were available yesterday at Mohonk, which I visited with some handy e-mail information on trail conditions from the Mid Hudson Cross Country Ski Society.
Reliable reports on the state of ski trails can be hard to come by: my telephone calls yielded descriptions ranging from good to fair to poor. But I joined the Society's discussion group on Friday afternoon and had up-to-date reports by e-mail Friday night. Armed with that information, my son Max and I drove to the Traps and spent a great afternoon skiing to Copes Lookout at Mohonk and back. The picture here shows the spot near the lookout where we ate lunch under a rock overhang that sheltered us from the wind but provided beautiful views.
Overall, I would call conditions fair. The snow ranged from hard to chunky to icy, but thanks to Mohonk groomers, skiers and snowshoers who had preceded us, we found decent conditions on at least 4/5 of our trip. And that, with cold and clear weather, made for a great day of skiing.
To learn about the discussion group, go to http://www.roberts-1.com/d/mhxcss/. And here's my thanks to the good people who started this discussion group and keep it going--it is a great service for skiers in our region and a great use of the Web.