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The Adirondack Explorer is a nonprofit magazine covering the Adirondack Park's environment, recreation and communities.

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  1. Tom kligerman says

    Good story and the tale of the Flowed Lands Loop inspired my Adirondack ski buddy of 22 years to try it, which we did on March 3, 2021. This winter has been excellent of course and March 3 likely represented the zenith as just a few days later, warmer temps and bit of rain started to slowly reduce the hefty snowpack. We enjoyed a much better ski than Alan Wechsler did as far as the “Allen approach” trail as many many folks snowshoed to Allen and left a fine packed powder surface. Not a posthole to be seen in the nearly 6 miles to the turn toward “Marcy” – gotta luv that old hand hewn sign, looking like TR himself carved it in 1903 on one of his hunting foreys there. Then the trail breaking began as not a soul had ventured on the red marked trail this winter from what we could tell. As Wechsler describes the trail climbs up pretty steep and we switched to snowshoes after .5 mile. Slung our skis low on our packs to minimize conflicts with the many many snow-laden spruces holding frosty hands across the trail. Step by step we continued; going as slow as we did, you notice and are thankful for every little leveling of the trail and it really is well built. The craziest part was in a long incline that paralled the Opalescent Gorge, the trail is benched into a steep slope coming from the right and so much powder had slid down onto the trail, that it canted the normally level cross slope and we had to negotiate not just 48” of unbroken steep slope but also deal with our right snowshoe a foot higher than our left. At last, we spied the old dam at Flowed Lands and arrived exhausted and soaked to skin as it gets. Switched bk to skis and crossed the froze lands with partial views of the bottom half of Avalanche Pass. Changed into dry gear at the leanto onthe blue trail and enjoyed a helluva ski down. Trail was 5” new powder over snowshoe track and were able to hop turn as needed to stay in the track or where needed, stem christie over the foot high border of the track. Skied right over the brook at the bottom of the descent. Reached upper works and unlike Wechsler, we skied the .6 mile bacl to our car. 11 hours of fun.

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