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Old 09-10-2014, 09:43 PM   #1
Tick Magnet
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Mud Lake, Bleeker, SMWF, 10 Sep 2014

Today's hike was thrown together on a whim. On Monday, I hiked to Mud Lake in Mayfield and thought it would be neat to start the Fulton County Mud Lake Challenge. We have 46ers, CL90ers, Fire Towers, Waterfalls, etc. So, why not a Mud Lake Challenge?

Hitting the Chase Lake trailhead in the Shaker Mt Wild Forest at 9:00 AM, I really wasn't sure what to expect from this hike. I had been on the Chase Lake trail numerous times, but never wandered off it. The dry woods made for and easy walk on the red-disked trail. However, I was disappointed to see ATV tracks in one of the few soft spots (photo 1). Other evidence indicated that someone drove all the way to the Lean-To/Tent Site split in the trail. These tracks weren't here the last time I visited. This trail is so beautiful, why do people do this?!?

Once I went past the split and crossed the outlet of Mud Lake, it was an easy bushwhack to the pond. Although, there were a few thick hemlock patches that I had to bust through, it wasn't too bad of a walk. Once I arrived at the marshy shore, I walked around to get a good view (photo 2). At the base of a 100' ledges there were a series of rocks that provided a good spot to take a break and watch the local beaver who greeted me with a couple tail slaps.

After a long break and a snack, I headed up the cliff to wander around a little. I quickly found an interesting campsite perched on a ledge high above the pond. I guess it met the DEC's 150' rule as it was definitely that high above the Lake. Oye, that was a long way up! Once I scratched my exploratory itch, I bushwhacked directly to Chase Lake for lunch at one of my favorite Lean-to's (photo 3).

The Lean-to was in great shape and all the log book entries reflect the hard work people do in hauling out trash left by lazy slobs. The colors were just starting to turn (photo 4) and the resident loon serenaded me as I nibbled on my turkey sandwich, making for a truly enjoyable dining experience.

After a futile attempt at taking a nap (loon again), I decided to head for home. Still, I had a great time today doing a nice little hike in one of the more under-rated patches of woods that defines the Shaker Mt. Wild Forest.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1h2 Wallow.jpg (117.9 KB, 88 views)
File Type: jpg 2c1 Mud Lake.jpg (90.9 KB, 88 views)
File Type: jpg 3a1 Chase Lake LT.jpg (142.0 KB, 88 views)
File Type: jpg 3b1 Chase Lake.jpg (103.5 KB, 87 views)
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Old 09-12-2014, 01:07 PM   #2
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Is there an official count someplace of how many Muds there are? I seem to see them everywhere, although few have trail access so that'd be a tough challenge

Nike pics, looks like a peaceful day trip
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Old 09-14-2014, 08:38 AM   #3
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According to "Discover the Southern Adirondacks", pg. 39:

"Twenty-three Mud Ponds or Lakes lie within the Blue Line of the Adirondack Park". Totally do-able number.

You're right, most don't have trails...yet! I'm not sure how many are on private land or how you would verify that someone visited any particular Mud Pond/Lake. Canisters are a no-no, so maybe submit a mud sample. Of course, we'd have to come up with a governing body and a cool patch.

Mudders unite!
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Old 09-14-2014, 05:48 PM   #4
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Is there a start date for the challenge or does it count so long as we have the date? I've been to a number of Mud Lakes/Ponds over the years and wouldn't mind visiting some of them again. But others, well, once was enough.
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Old 09-14-2014, 07:11 PM   #5
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I would think that if you've ever hiked there, it would count.

I'm off to do two more in Fulton County tomorrow.

Stand-by for my report on the muddiness.
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