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Monday, July 10, 2017

Exploring the old Gooley Club Land(Central Adirondacks)

In the summer of 2013, the NY DEC purchased a large tract of land now known as the Pine Lake Primitive Area, which was formerly owned by the private Gooley Club.  There are some very beautiful features in this quiet area of the Adirondacks and I've been quite anxious to visit this area for a while now.  Since most of the hiking is pretty easy with little elevation gain, I had my dad come along as well.  We parked at a gate just past the old Gooley Club House, which is the furthest point north we could drive on Chain Lakes Road South(the old Gooley Club Road).  Chain Lakes Road South is found just east of the hamlet of Indian Lake, on the north side of Route 28.
 From the field just below the Gooley Club House is a nice view down towards the Hudson River.
 I found a rough foot path, which heads down through a field and provides access to the Hudson.
 
 A look downstream.
Headed back uphill to the parking area, beginning the hike just past the gate.  The Gooley Club Road is now a marked hiking trail and is very easy to follow.  We headed north, enjoying a comfortable summer morning.
 After about 1.2 miles, we arrived at a yellow marked trail, which heads west towards Clear Pond.  This trail is much more of a foot path and much different than the road we had been hiking.  The DEC sign says .3 miles to the pond, but I measured it as closer to half a mile.  Arrived at the beautiful shore of the pond, with Dunbrook Mountain looming in the distance.
 Saw some small rocky cliffs on the north end of the pond. 
 We brought along some fishing poles and fished from a large rock along the shore.  We caught a bunch of sunfish but threw them back in.
 After relaxing at the pond for about 45 minutes, we headed back on the trail, soon arriving back at the old road.  We turned left here, continuing north .
 After about 1.5 miles north from the trail junction, we arrived at a fork in the trail.  We turned right here, heading a short distance down to the Cedar River.
The calm waters of the Cedar River.  We found a rock, which juts out steeply over the creek and decided to fish from there.  We caught a couple of small mouth bass and even spotted an enormous snapping turtle.
 A bend in the river upstream from our fishing spot.
 After about a half hour, we turned back, heading back south.  The road this far north is much rougher, with summer growth crowding in.
 Once we got back to our vehicle, we drove back down to the first parking area and parked there.
The Indian River can be heard roaring along just below the parking area.  A short foot path provides access.
 
 We hiked about .35 miles back north along the road, where a gate and a woods road can be seen on the right.  This woods road is unmarked but wide and easy to follow, heading east towards the confluence of the Hudson and Indian Rivers.
 After about .6 miles on the woods road and just under a mile from the first parking area, we arrived at the confluence of the two rivers.  This is a really gorgeous spot and well worth the effort. 
We retraced our steps from here, passing a group of forest rangers on the way back.  They were very friendly and chatted with us for a few. 
Hiked about 8 miles total for the day with minimal elevation gain and loss.

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