I'd been meaning to post something like this anyway, but seeing the Malczyks
on Dodge's Drop only makes it double for me.

Anyway, last Tuesday my daughter and I hiked Wakely Mtn, described by NY
State as "Moderately Difficult," with the last 1.2 miles described as
"steep." At the top is "the tallest fire tower in the Adirondacks."
Other than that, I don't know any of the altitudes or verts, but have to
assume that, compared to some of the peaks we hear about from the M's, the
K's, Matt R and Mark R (and others? sorry), what I climbed was way wimpy.
But it sure whupped me.
My daughter started off at a pace I thought way too fast. By the end she was
asking, "are we near the top yet?" and I was wheezing like Matt D's Toyota. I
suppose it didn't help that the humidity was near 90% (according to my
personal grading system; glasses fogging every 2 minutes means near 90%).

At the top was a sweet little cabin, unlocked, with a wood stove and two made
beds (and two jars of mayonaise of indeterminate age). Made me fantasize
about climbing there in winter.

But the ski down seems way beyond me. Climbing up, the pitch, except for
maybe 4 or 5 places, was just shy of requiring hands. But the trail was never
as wide as a ski-length. No way I could negotiate it in winter. Still, it was
fun to imagine.

The fire tower at the top was scary enough. Laura wouldn't go past the third
of 8? levels. I went all the way, hanging on for dear life. There were
handrails, so, really, nothing to fear, but the wind was whipping and the
whole erector set structure seemed wickedly exposed.

The view at the top was sufficient reward. Looking south was beautiful, with
varied terrain: valleys, lakes, marshes, more ranges. But the view north was
other-worldly: just peaks, peaks and more peaks, all dark and brooding with
the day's threat of rain hanging everywhere. It reminded me of the
mountainscapes I'd seen in the Rockies.


Back to Dodge's Drop. Amazing pix, guys. I was looking on in a bit of awe
when I noticed the little spot that is Hermit Lake, far, far below the
summit. Having seen Hermit Lake from maybe 100 verts above it, the shift in
perspective made the whole set of images pop into frightening reality for me.
You guys amaze me. Hats off.


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