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On 2011-08-22 12:53, Matthew Kulas wrote:
> Obviously, Dave you didn't know any better, but to those of you who 
> might be inspired to do the same, please note that the DEC, the ADK, & 
> the Adirondack 46ers *strongly* discourage people from bushwhacking 
> from Gray to Marcy in an effort to protect a very fragile area. 
Oops. Color me embarrassed. In my defense, I'd never heard of this 
discouragement, and had to look it up on some Internet forums to find 
out more about it. The latest edition of the ADK trail guide (from 2004) 
still mentions this herd path. From what little I read on the forums, I 
wasn't able to determine if the alpine vegetation under concern is the 
actual alpine vegetation above treeline on Marcy (which we never stepped 
on, using the rocks as always), or the subalpine krummholz (which didn't 
seem much different from the high-elevation spruce-fir that many herd 
paths go through). Either way, we'll do as asked and avoid it in the future.

> If that wasn't enough of a reason, the bushwhack is shorter 
> as-the-crow-flies, it takes most people longer than if they were to 
> descend back to Lake Tear-of-the-Clouds and ascend Marcy from Four 
> Corners, and the trail and views up the South side of Marcy's summit 
> cone are excellent.
Yup. We met a guy on the summit of Gray, and left about the same time as 
him. He went down the established herd path, climbed Skylight AND Marcy, 
and arrived at the summit of Marcy about 10 minutes after us. Of course, 
we were taking our time, and he was practically running, and spending 
about 2 minutes on each summit.

Strangely enough, we ran into the same guy a week later on the summit of 
Redfield.

Dave G.

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