While all the attention has focused on paddling Boreas Pond and access to the pond, DEC is planning to construct a number of hiking trails which will provide access to the ponds and establish connections to other parts of the High Peaks Wilderness. There will also be opportunities for biking. Here’s a summary:
Boreas Ponds Trail : This would be the longest of the new trails ( 7.5 miles). It would connect The Blue Ridge highway to the ponds, providing hikers with an alternative to walking on the logging road.
Boreas River Trail : This trail would also start on the Blue Ridge Highway. It would run along the Boreas River to LaBier Flow. From there, it’s a mile walk to the pond.
Boreas Mountain Trail : Boreas Mountain ( elevation 3,776) just misses being a High Peak. DEC plans to construct a 2.5 -mile trail from Boreas Ponds Trail to the summit.
Casey Brook Connector : This five -mile connector would be the main route from Boreas Ponds to the Mount Marcy region. It would end at the current trail from Elk Lake to Panther Gorge. At the junction, DEC plans to construct a trail up the Pinnacle to the Colvin Range.
White Lily Trail : Beginning at the Casey Brook trail, this trail would lead 2.2 miles to White Lily pond. This is one of the most scenic areas in the Boreas Pond tract.
Dudley Brook Connector: This six-mile trail would connect White Lily Pond to the Hanging Spear Falls Trail. From there, hikers could travel to Lake Colden or the western High Peaks. A two spur trail would lead to Cheney Cobble.
Ragged Mountain Trail : This trail would connect the Gulf Brook Road to the open summit of Ragged Mountain. This trail would provide access to the cliffs on Ragged Mountain. A spur trail would lead to LeClaire.
Biking Trails: Biking will be allowed on the Gulf Brook Road and Boreas Road up to a mile from the ponds. Biking is not allowed on the old logging road and trails in the Wilderness area. For those who prefer single – track riding, DEC plans to construct two compact networks of winding single-track trails in the Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest. The Gulf Brook network would be west of Gulf Brook Road and would connect with the Boreas Ponds Trail. The Blue Ridge network would lie off the Blue Ridge Highway and connect with Branch Road and Elk Lake Road. Various Loop rides would be possible in both networks.
These CONSERVATION NOTES were adopted from an article by Phil Brown ( pages 16-19) which appeared in the July/August issue of ADIRONDACK EXPLORER
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