Adirondack High Peak Hiking Moratorium?
DEC notice below, taken from a post on VFFT (few weeks old post), contact info for DEC at bottom so you can ring them or check their website.
The moratory is voluntary as fas as I know (never seen a trail closure enforced by DEC due to mud, but then again I try to stay out of the high peaks during that time of year...):
DEC ALERTS HIKERS TO MUDDY TRAIL CONDITIONS IN THE HIGH PEAKS
Hikers Should Temporarily Avoid High Elevation Trails in the Adirondacks
With the start of a new season of outdoor hiking and recreation on public lands in the Adirondacks, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Regional Director Stuart A. Buchanan today urged hikers to be cautious and postpone taking any hikes on trails above 3,000 feet until the beginning of June.
DEC is asking hikers to voluntarily avoid trails above 3,000 feet, particularly high elevation trails in the Dix, Giant and High Peaks Wilderness Areas of the northern Adirondacks, due to muddy conditions and the potential damage hiking can cause to vegetation and the soft ground.
"The Adirondacks provide great opportunities to hike scenic trails and enjoy the region's beautiful mountains and lakes," Director Buchanan said. "However, the high elevation trails in the Adirondacks are very muddy this spring due to snowmelt and rain, and we are asking people to temporarily avoid these areas so they do not disturb our natural resources."
Hikers are advised to only use trails at lower elevations during the spring mud season, since these trails usually dry soon after snowmelt and are on less erosive soils than the higher peaks. DEC is asking hiker to avoid the following trails through May 15, 2002:
* High Peaks Wilderness Area - all trails above 3,000 feet; wet muddy snow conditions still prevail, specifically: Algonquin, Colden, Feldspar, Gothics, Indian Pass, Lake Arnold Cross-Over, Marcy, Marcy Dam - Avalanche - Lake Colden which is extremely wet, Phelps Trail above John Brook Lodge, Range Trail, Skylight, Wright and all "trail-less" peaks.
* Dix Mtn. Wilderness Area - all trails above Elk Lake and Round Pond
* Giant Mtn. Wilderness Area - all trails above Giant's Washbowl, "the Cobbles," and Owls Head.
DEC suggests the following alternative trails for hiking, subject to weather conditions:
* Debar Mt. Wild Forest:
* Giant Mt. Wilderness:
Roaring Brook Falls
* High Peaks Wilderness:
Porter from Cascade; avoid all other approaches
* Hurricane Primitive Area:
Hurricane Mt. from Route 9N
* McKenzie Mt. Wilderness:
* Pharaoh Lake Wilderness Area:
* Saranac Lakes Wild Forest:
* Taylor Pond Wild Forest:
For additional information on trail conditions, visit the DEC website at http:/www.dec.state.ny.us/website/dlf/publands/trailcond.html or call the DEC Region 5 Lands and Forests Office in Ray Brook at (518) 897-1200.
Is there a hiking moratorium for the Adirondack High Peak trails this time of year due to concerns of trail degradation? I seem to recall reading an article posted in the Information Center at the Lake Placid ADK Loj concerning this topic from last year(?). The DEC actually enforced a two month hiking ban for the High Peak trails. True? What's the story for this year?