View Full Version : Section Hike AT NY to CT

Rocket Man
07-24-2012, 13:29
I have been preparing to section hike the AT from NY (17A Bellvale) to CT. I will be staring my hike the last week of August (this year 2012). This will be my first time on the trail. I'm looking for any advice or useful information regarding water sources (along with purification methods), Shelters (I do plan using my tent), food preparation, trail conditions, experiences with animals etc.

I noticed there are long distances between shelters. Any recommendations on areas to camp should I come up short in distance. I'm concerned about finding suitable water sources along the way. I'm not sure how far of a distance I can hike in one day.

I would appreciate any advice, experiences, crazy stories or events.


07-24-2012, 13:52
Cosch lou and i hiked 55 to pawling and it was pretty dry.water sources are down to a trickle.easy to find tent sites if the need arises.in harriman youre restricted to established sites.filtering your water is best.you might want to check out the SAWYER IN LINE WATER FILTER.

coach lou
07-24-2012, 14:23
Rt 22 Nobo to Bulls bridge is a very pleasant walk, Wiley Shelter is a dump but has some nice tenting spots. Ten Mile River Shelter and Tenting area is a good stop. you will now start to climb and roll thru the connecticut section. Mt Algo is very close to the road, try to avoid. The River run north of Kent is flat for a few miles. Silver Hill site is also a pleasant surprize, and then you will start to climb many short ups and downs. 2 Weeks ago it was bone dry from Sages Ravine to Jug end. After Tom Leanard in Mass it got alittle wetter. Enjoy.

07-24-2012, 14:47
I just finished a section in June that includes the first 30 miles of the section that you are planning to hike. A couple of things that I would mention are: (1) the terrain starting a good bit south of your start and continuing until Bear Mountain is a bit more rugged, in places, than the elevation profile and contour maps would suggest, (2) soon after crossing Pallisades Parkway, there is a new turn to the left (west of the trail) that for me was tricky. Prior to this, the AT coincides with a red trail. I missed the turn where the AT broke off to the left and did not recognize my mistake for nearly a quarter mile. Just keep an eye out for this turn and do not make the same mistake.

Enjoy your hike.

Rocket Man
07-24-2012, 15:00

Thanks for that useful advice. I will be looking for that when I get there.

Rocket Man
07-24-2012, 15:02
Gold Member,

Thanks for the reply. I will make sure to save some extra weight in my backpack for water just to be safe.

07-25-2012, 01:34
I don't know about New York, but in CT watch out for rattlensnakes. I've never seen one, but they are out there. Also check yourself carefully every day for lyme ticks.

07-25-2012, 01:36
Also, if you go all the way through CT, Bear Mountain at the north end has great views from the big rock cairn alongside the trail. This is not, however, the true summit, which is about 100 yards north and west of the cairn and provides excellent views north and west. Worth the extra steps if you get a pretty day, as most days are this time of year.

07-25-2012, 06:12
Gold Member,

Thanks for the reply. I will make sure to save some extra weight in my backpack for water just to be safe.
Its hikerboy,not austin powers

07-25-2012, 07:23
There are timber rattlers in ny,so keep an eye on the trail 10-20ft in front of you.and dont listen to your ipod.if theyre threatened,you will hear him.the sound of the rattle is unmistakeable.

Old Grouse
07-25-2012, 09:57
We'vegotten some rain in Western CT in the last few days so maybe it won't be too bad. I can't get out there until Sunday to look.

07-25-2012, 12:50
We hiked almost all of NY in day hikes last May. Most reliable water sources would be Bear Mountain State Park, Campsite on Dennytown Rd (seasonal pump), Appalachian Deli (US 9). Hikers camp at Graymoor so there is probably water available. http://www.wildernessescapades.com/wp/category/appalachian-trail/at-new-york/

07-25-2012, 20:52
+1 for what Tripp said. The "real" trail in NY and what the maps say are very different. You'll be asking yourself, "Where is this hill on the map?" or "where in the world did the trail go?" Since your starting at 17A be prepared for walking on a lot of rock slabs. If it rains the day of or the day before prepared to take it a bit easy as these are smooth and get quite slippery when they or your shoes are wet. The trail is not rugged from a big climbs perspective but was surprisingly difficult compared to what the map suggested. We and the thrus we were hiking with all commented every day for the first couple in NY along the lines of "I didn't see that coming."

After Bear Mountain the trail improves and is not quite as rocky/rugged as before. In fact it eventually became quite pleasant and we could make tracks. I was hiking at the same time as Tripp, making it as far north as NY55, and conditions were good but still wet. We faced lots of mosquitoes at night. Bring on the bug spray of your choice/treat your clothes with deet/permethrin, bring a head net, etc. Whatever your favorite bug avoidance method is. I would imagine it's quite a bit drier now then it was when we went so maybe bugs are less of a problem.

Ticks - we picked tons of big ticks off of us but did not find any deer ticks. Still that doesn't mean they aren't out there. You should definitely come prepared. There are good threads on here about how to prepare your clothes for ticks.

Shelters/Camping spots - I had no problems finding a camping spot when I needed one though most nights we camped near a shelter so I could use the fire pit (open fires are not allowed in NY IIRC).

Tiorati Circle is a great place to stop and fix your dinner, use the bathroom, grab an ice cream or soda from the vending machine but BE WARNED - the vending machine will take your crisp 5 dollar bill and reward you with $1 coins as part of your change. Argh. Very heavy and I had used a $10.
Graymoor Spiritual Life Center - Definitely worth the stay. They have a cold outdoor shower (feels great when you're hot and sweaty), a covered pavilion, port-a-potties, and more. Plus there is a superb gas station about a half a mile before the center with a deli, pizzeria, and cheap beverages. We hiked up a pint of Ben and Jerry's to enjoy when we got to camp.
RPH shelter - Skip this shelter. There is no fire ring, very little space inside, the water comes up brown (well) and it's right in the middle of a neighborhood. We had a good time there but there is a great camping spot a mile or two south. Had I known what to expect I would have camped instead.

As for distance that's completely relative. If you haven't done so already, I would encourage you to load up your pack and get out for a practice hike on a weekend. It's a great way to shake out your gear and tweak things before you are on the trail and realize you have a problem. That should help in determining your comfortable distance. Also, camping away from a shelter is permitted in NY so I wouldn't worry too much about making the shelters.

Papa D
07-25-2012, 21:19
Stop in Kent if you get a chance and have a beverage at the Fife and Drum

09-15-2012, 18:45
What was your trip like?