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Old 06-07-2017, 05:46 PM   #21
geogymn
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I like this informative real time thread. I want to take my 4 year old grandson canoeing so blackflies are a concern. Thanks for the reports!
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Old 06-07-2017, 08:39 PM   #22
Pauly D.
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I was in the Pharaoh Lake Wilderness last weekend and they were not bad. Very noticeably different from 3 weeks ago.
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Old 06-07-2017, 09:58 PM   #23
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I was in the Pharaoh Lake Wilderness last weekend and they were not bad. Very noticeably different from 3 weeks ago.
Last weekend was cold. On Sunday it started to warm up and they got really bad again.
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Old 06-08-2017, 12:37 AM   #24
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I was at Puffer Pond for a brief time during a trip last week and it was kind of amazing to see the effect only a small variation in the wind can have on the black flies.

When I first got to the lean-to on the downwind end of the pond for a dinner break the wind was blowing hard enough to create white caps out on the water and nary a bug was in sight. Then, after an hour or so, the wind dropped off ever so slightly (felt like only a few mph) and that was all the respite they needed. They came back out in thick swarms after just that tiny, barely perceptible drop in the speed of the wind.

Sent me running for my head net in order to finish my relaxing moments flipping through the LT journal (which, btw, featured an exciting new entry by a certain forum member who was fortunate enough to wake up in the presence of a cow and calf moose while staying there recently! )

We all know windy sites can help, but I got to experience what seemed to be the precise threshold of enough wind and not quite windy enough. I thought it interesting how such a minor change in the conditions had such a drastic effect.


...I also bushwhacking to and stayed at Twin Ponds and the only break from the flies at that location was nighttime and the time the dog and I spent in the tent hiding from a fairly severe thunderstorm and waiting for it to pass.

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Old 06-08-2017, 05:29 AM   #25
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My point, exactly.
Stop complaining about the bugs!
They've been here for centuries, we are the intruders.
If we cannot accept the discomforts of wilderness camping, we may as well stay home.
I can deal with the bugs, but I've been trying to get my girlfriend into backpacking/camping for years. I finally wore her down and she agreed to go on a 3 day trip with me. I don't want her first experience to be miserable due to swarms of biting flies that she never wants to go again.
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:53 AM   #26
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My point, exactly.
Stop complaining about the bugs!
They've been here for centuries, we are the intruders.
If we cannot accept the discomforts of wilderness camping, we may as well stay home.
HS, I don't think anyone is complaining about the bugs. Just a bit of conversation.


Yesterday, on Santa Clara Flow, the BF's were out in force but the skeeters were the real treat. The fly dope kept them away but as soon as my treated hat and neckerchief were off they came down hard.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:49 AM   #27
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They've been here for centuries, we are the intruders.
I'm pretty sure we came from the same place they did. We didn't just appear here in houses and with cars. We are not intruders, we just evolved.

I was in the Cranberry Lake area last weekend and they seemed relatively calm. I'm hoping this weekend is just as calm despite the heat! Either way I will be enjoying breakfast from my hammock.
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:42 AM   #28
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Overall I just don't think there are any hard fast rules, except maybe at certain locations. The weather obviously has an effect.

Where I live near Glens Falls/Lake George we're usually done with the black flies by mid- to late-June, but I've been in other parts of the ADKs where they're still hanging around. One year on July 4 weekend they were nasty up by Cedar River Flow. One woman we saw looked like she had chicken pox. The crew I was with that day still talks about it.
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:30 PM   #29
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Overall I just don't think there are any hard fast rules, except maybe at certain locations. The weather obviously has an effect.

Where I live near Glens Falls/Lake George we're usually done with the black flies by mid- to late-June, but I've been in other parts of the ADKs where they're still hanging around. One year on July 4 weekend they were nasty up by Cedar River Flow. One woman we saw looked like she had chicken pox. The crew I was with that day still talks about it.
Black fly population usually declines after a week or so of hot weather.
Another poster mentioned the wind.
Pick a campsite (if you can) on a breezy point.
They can be literally, a pain in the neck, but it's a small price to pay, given the alternative. Staying home.
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:47 PM   #30
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...They can be literally, a pain in the neck, but it's a small price to pay, given the alternative. Staying home.
Agreed!
When you know that it's black fly season (which is every year from mid May to late June), and you ask around how the bugs are (with mixed reports), would you really rather put off your hiking/camping trip until the deer fly season instead?
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:58 PM   #31
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They can be literally, a pain in the neck, but it's a small price to pay, given the alternative. Staying home.

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Agreed!
... would you really rather put off your hiking/camping trip until the deer fly season instead?
In almost all cases I find that my memories of the bugs vanish into the forgotten long before my other recollections, be they fond or otherwise, of particular trips do. Time has a way of healing not only the bites but also most memories of them until only the truly special and worthwhile recollections remain vivid in your mind.

When the little buggers really start to annoy me I try and remember that. Helps me to relax and just let it be.





All the bug talk reminds me a bit of Pat McManus' comedic take on camping in "A Fine and Pleasent Misery".

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Old 06-08-2017, 10:24 PM   #32
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The most annoying bugs to me are mosquitos when/if they occur during the early archery season for deer. Although there are scented wafers for the ThermaCell, I still avoid using it at that time.
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Old 06-09-2017, 06:37 AM   #33
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I don't know what everyone's all in a fuss about. Glen found this picture of a black fly blood-letting on the Dubawnt River in Nunavut - far northern Canada.

We've got it easy!
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Old 06-09-2017, 08:25 AM   #34
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Thinking about heading up to the Lake Placid area and Rollins pond for the weekend of June 23-25th with a beginner camper. I want to make sure the experience isn't a mess because of the black flies. We're thinking of hiking Indian Head and/or Mt. Jo. Any guidance on what these areas may be like in 2 weeks? Thanks!!

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Old 06-09-2017, 09:39 AM   #35
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Black Flies

I will be up on Fish Creek campground July 15-22, hope not too bad then !
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Old 06-09-2017, 01:46 PM   #36
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I don't know what everyone's all in a fuss about. Glen found this picture of a black fly blood-letting on the Dubawnt River in Nunavut - far northern Canada.

We've got it easy!
I don't know how they all get enough to eat!
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Old 06-09-2017, 10:51 PM   #37
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I don't know how they all get enough to eat!
I have often wondered the same thing...
And I have a fully formulated uneducated intuitive guess regarding this matter.

Since it will take me more than two hours and 45 minutes to formalize and actually type these ideas, I relinquish all responsibility in the hope that fragments of the truth may surface from others through the haphazard process of an internet forum thread, after I press this SUBMIT button.
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Old 06-10-2017, 09:01 AM   #38
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I don't know how they all get enough to eat!
There are over 11 genera and 165 species in North America with around 23 different species that have been collected in NYS. Only females of certain species require a blood meal for egg development otherwise adults survive (and reproduce) feeding on vegetative and carbohydrate matter. So we can be glad to know that not every species or individual is out after our a$$.
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Old 06-10-2017, 04:24 PM   #39
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i can tolerate black flies during the daylight hours, but the skeeters were my worst enemy while trying to sleep in a leanto. Until I bought a screen tent that perfectly fit my sleeping bag. Now i have the satisfaction of listening to those little buggers trying to get in.
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Old 06-10-2017, 09:54 PM   #40
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Now i have the satisfaction of listening to those little buggers trying to get in.
Ha! I get the exact same satisfaction Jim! I always take great pleasure in hearing the chorus of buzzing taking place mere inches from my head and thinking, "not tonight, ya bastards, not tonight!" Especially on those warm summer nights when I want to lay on top of my bag rather than in.

I highly recommend it for those who always sleep out in the open in LTs. It's one of the little joys of camping.

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