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Sunday, January 15, 2017

Joralemon Park(Coeymans)

Took advantage of a small window of free time by visiting Joralemon Park, located at 148 Starr Road in Ravena.  To find the park, head west on Route 143 out of Ravena to Starr Road(County Route 102), where you will turn right(north) and continue until you see a small unmarked circular pull off  on the left side of the road.  The trail head starts across the road and is marked with a small sign.  There is a bigger, official parking lot about .1 of a mile further down the road but this lot is generally used more for people either playing Disc Golf, visiting the tennis courts or using  the children's playground.
 Looking across Starr Road from the parking area at the trail's entrance and bare woods.
On my way to start the blue trail, a local gentleman approached me and informed me of a small but interesting cave near the road.  The cave is not obvious unless you are looking for it.   It can be found just right of the trail head about 15 yards away, hiding in plain sight.
 You must bend down to enter the cave but once inside it begins to open up and about 20 feet in, you can stand up fully(unless you are taller than 6 foot 4 or so).  It actually appeared that someone had used this spot as some sort of a shelter recently.  The cave continues for another 10-15 feet, but becomes increasingly smaller until it is no longer navigable.
After visiting the cave I walked back to the trail entrance and began hiking the wide, obvious trail through the open woods.
 The most pronounced aspect of the park are the numerous glacial erratics found throughout the woods.
 The woods were so wide open that I ventured off trail several times to do some exploration. Here is the edge of a large frozen over swamp.
 Enjoying a quiet stroll on a beautiful January afternoon. Even though it was only about 35 degrees, it is hard to ask for much better weather than this, given the time of year. 
 Climbing up to a rock overlook of the swamp.
 I explored various trails, some marked, some not marked, as well as many of the 27 Disc Golf holes scattered throughout the woods.  Eventually looped back to Starr Road, crossing over near the tennis courts to the west side of the road.  This part of the park is much different with wide open fields to wander through.
 Near the southern end of the fields is a foot bridge that crosses a tributary of Coeymans Creek, and brings you back to the parking area where you had left the car. 
Hiked about 1.75 miles on a sun filled winter afternoon.

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