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Old 08-05-2021, 10:31 PM   #41
montcalm
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Here's a pic of Tryon that you might appreciate. I call it Gully Biking, because there's no mountains in Rochester



And my obligatory HHS Honeoye Lake photo that I wanted to post earlier:

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Old 08-06-2021, 05:53 AM   #42
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Cool photos. I'm a sucker for viewpoints overlooking large bodies of water. Here's another one of my favorites in the region -- above Rushford Lake in Allegany County. That's a really nice location where I was thinking of getting cottage in the past.
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Old 08-06-2021, 07:26 AM   #43
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Part of the reason behind why camping is prohibited in WMA's has to do with where the money comes for purchasing those lands by the state. Some of that money is funds raised through Pittman-Robertson taxes on hunting equipment- which must be used only for wildlife management. Any associated recreational use must usually be associated with hunting access or wildlife viewing. Hence, trails can be an appropriate use of those lands since they facilitate access for both hunting and wildlife viewing- but camping is just a bit too much of a stretch, since that's not necessarily an integral component of hunting or wildlife viewing.

I'll second the recommendation to check out the east side of Letchworth. A few years back, I backpacked the Letchworth Trail over 2 nights in December. Was definitely a pretty neat trip. (Note that if you go overnight you need to get a free permit from the state park first- I was told when I got mine that any car left unattended overnight at any trailhead in Letchworth will automatically trigger a search, due to the high frequency of incidents in and around the gorge.)

Darien Lake State Park also has a few "backcountry" lean-tos. Same deal, free permit from the park is needed to camp at them.

If you're willing to go west of Buffalo there's some neat terrain on the shores and inland areas near Lake Erie.
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Old 08-06-2021, 08:20 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSettahr View Post
Part of the reason behind why camping is prohibited in WMA's has to do with where the money comes for purchasing those lands by the state. Some of that money is funds raised through Pittman-Robertson taxes on hunting equipment- which must be used only for wildlife management. Any associated recreational use must usually be associated with hunting access or wildlife viewing. Hence, trails can be an appropriate use of those lands since they facilitate access for both hunting and wildlife viewing- but camping is just a bit too much of a stretch, since that's not necessarily an integral component of hunting or wildlife viewing.

I'll second the recommendation to check out the east side of Letchworth. A few years back, I backpacked the Letchworth Trail over 2 nights in December. Was definitely a pretty neat trip. (Note that if you go overnight you need to get a free permit from the state park first- I was told when I got mine that any car left unattended overnight at any trailhead in Letchworth will automatically trigger a search, due to the high frequency of incidents in and around the gorge.)

Darien Lake State Park also has a few "backcountry" lean-tos. Same deal, free permit from the park is needed to camp at them.

If you're willing to go west of Buffalo there's some neat terrain on the shores and inland areas near Lake Erie.
Thanks for the detailed explanation of why WMAs don't permit camping. I do notice that some WMAs have shelters and campsites just outside their boundaries. Hi-Tor's one example, as is the area where I'll be camping tonight. I'll post a trip report from there after I return on Sunday.

I imagine Letchworth's park rangers have their hands full between the accidents in the gorge and the occasional suicides.

Close to Letchworth is Sonyea State Forest, which has a small gorge with a waterfall. Bringing this discussion full-circle, that's one of the few waterfalls west of 390 that I haven't seen. On that same failed Letchworth trip in February, I had Sonyea as the first stop on my itinerary. My damn GPS routed me through a state prison, so I was forced to turn around and find an alternative route. The backcountry roads around there were in pretty bad condition then, so I proceeded to Letchworth... and then the Genesee Greenway trail where I was finally able to get in some much-needed exercise!
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Old 08-06-2021, 08:57 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by DSettahr View Post
Part of the reason behind why camping is prohibited in WMA's has to do with where the money comes for purchasing those lands by the state. Some of that money is funds raised through Pittman-Robertson taxes on hunting equipment- which must be used only for wildlife management. Any associated recreational use must usually be associated with hunting access or wildlife viewing. Hence, trails can be an appropriate use of those lands since they facilitate access for both hunting and wildlife viewing- but camping is just a bit too much of a stretch, since that's not necessarily an integral component of hunting or wildlife viewing.
Interesting. I wonder how they then got away with adding TWO lean tos IN Hi Tor which are only available to special groups i.e. churches, scouts, etc by reservation only.

But what you say makes sense at Hi Tor because of the the series of man-made ponds and fields, with bird houses and occasional benches. It was obviously designed as bird habitat. The ponds mostly support amphibians like frogs and salamanders. Far too small for any breeding fish population. I assume that's the bird feed, although I think it promotes a very healthy racoon population based on their all night antics at the East Hill Lean To.


Quote:
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I'll second the recommendation to check out the east side of Letchworth. A few years back, I backpacked the Letchworth Trail over 2 nights in December. Was definitely a pretty neat trip. (Note that if you go overnight you need to get a free permit from the state park first- I was told when I got mine that any car left unattended overnight at any trailhead in Letchworth will automatically trigger a search, due to the high frequency of incidents in and around the gorge.)
Not bad - not the most handsome time of year but I bet you didn't have to fight anyone on the trail. I bet mid-October would be fantastic - I wonder if it gets much use then.
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Old 08-06-2021, 09:55 AM   #46
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Camping is allowed on at least some WMAs, but a Special Permit is required from the regional WMA manager. Maybe that's the case at Hi-Tor
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Old 08-06-2021, 09:54 PM   #47
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I found this regarding the naming of Parish/Conklin Gully in the UMP for Canandaigua Highlands.

Quote:
QUESTION:
In the history section of High Tor, there's a Parrish family dating back to the 1700's, but
somewhere the gully name got changed to Conklin. Where did that change come from and how
can you get it changed back to Parrish? Who is Conklin? Someone mentioned that Conklin
might have been the name of the surveyor. Everything should be changed to Parrish,

ANSWER:

We included the name Conklin because that is the way it is labled on the USGS maps. Many
hikers and emergency personnel know the gully by that name. Within this document the gully is
called Parish/Conklin Gully so everyone can identify the place. It is more important to us to
make sure everyone is on the same page rather than correct the history ofthe local name.
This UMP is dated June 2005 and the inventory shows the Lean Tos were not there at that time.

This is the only thing I saw regarding their future construction:

Quote:
Construction of a leanto on High Tor
Wildlife Management Area by the Hornell
area BOCES.
Their official inventory of waterfalls:

Quote:
Although fed by intermittent streams, five
different waterfalls can be observed on the High
Tor Wildlife Management Area and one in the
northeast section of Italy Hill State Forest.
Three are located in Clark Gulley, one in
Parish/Conklin Gulley and one in an unnamed
ravine just west of the State boat launch at
Woodville.
Not sure exactly what constitutes a falls by their definition, but I'd say there are a few more intermittent ones.

Last edited by montcalm; 08-06-2021 at 10:10 PM..
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Old 08-06-2021, 10:02 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by St.Regis View Post
Camping is allowed on at least some WMAs, but a Special Permit is required from the regional WMA manager. Maybe that's the case at Hi-Tor
Again from the UMP:

Quote:
Overnight camping is not allowed on Wildlife
Management Areas, except by permitted
organized groups
.

Same case as it is with the current Lean Tos. It's an odd rule.
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Old 08-07-2021, 06:54 AM   #49
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New York Codes, Rules and Regulations
https://govt.westlaw.com/nycrr/Brows...ault%29&bhcp=1
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Old 08-07-2021, 12:28 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montcalm View Post
Here's a pic of Tryon that you might appreciate. I call it Gully Biking, because there's no mountains in Rochester



And my obligatory HHS Honeoye Lake photo that I wanted to post earlier:

That looks like Harriet Hollister Spencer State Recreational Area where you took a picture of Honeoye. Some of these areas being discussed are hang gliding launch sites. Italy valley is one of them. I have been up there. Bristol also has one, it's on Stid Hill. If you go to Bath NY, there is a park on Sharps Hill aka Mossy Bank, this is another hang gliding site. There is a view of an eagle nest from up there. I remember Dansville being an interesting place and Harris Hill being a major soaring site. I became interested in hang gliding so I toured the site, took a lesson and spent a day at Ellensburg in the Gunks learning about them. I did a massive tour of the finger lakes region covering the water falls, fire towers, former fire tower sites and any hang gliding site I could discover through research. There is a lot to see. If you go to Watkins Glen, Sugar Hill fire tower is only 5 miles to the west.

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Old 08-07-2021, 12:51 PM   #51
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That looks like Harriet Hollister Spencer State Recreational Area where you took a picture of Honeoye. Some of these areas being discussed are hang gliding launch sites. Italy valley is one of them. I have been up there. Bristol also has one, it's on Stid Hill. If you go to Bath NY, there is a park on Sharps Hill aka Mossy Bank, this is another hang gliding site. There is a view of an eagle nest from up there. I remember Dansville being an interesting place and Harris Hill being a major soaring site. I became interested in hang gliding so I toured the site, took a lesson and spent a day at Ellensburg in the Gunks learning about them. I did a massive tour of the finger lakes region covering the water falls, fire towers, former fire tower sites and any hang gliding site I could discover through research. There is a lot to see. If you go to Watkins Glen, Sugar Hill fire tower is only 5 miles to the west.
Yup, that's Hollister.

There's four of that I can think of readily in the area:
  • Harriet Hollister
  • Stid Hill
  • Italy Hill
  • Ontario County Park

We call 'em "Jump Offs".

I didn't know about the one in Dansville.
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Old 08-07-2021, 01:08 PM   #52
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This is the OCP one:






You can drive pretty much right up to OCP and HHS. Italy Hill might be a little less friendly depending on the approach, but I think you can get up there without 4WD.

I've never been to the Stid Hill jump off. It's easily seen from Bristol Mountain though, and of course you can drive up there.
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Old 08-07-2021, 01:35 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by montcalm View Post
This is the OCP one:






You can drive pretty much right up to OCP and HHS. Italy Hill might be a little less friendly depending on the approach, but I think you can get up there without 4WD.

I've never been to the Stid Hill jump off. It's easily seen from Bristol Mountain though, and of course you can drive up there.
I saw that on satellite and was wondering what it was. Thanks for letting me know it's Ontario County Park. In Ellensburg, I was specifically told by the instructor not to refer to launching off a mountain as jumping off, it should be referred to as flying off. There are hang gliding flying sites all over the state. In Dansville, it's on East Hill. You can tell where they are, because they cut swaths of trees down on steep sides of hills, sometimes in a fanned out pattern. I just looked up Rochester Area Flyers, it turns out Mossy Bank and Harriet Hollister are now permanently closed.

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Old 08-07-2021, 05:13 PM   #54
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I was specifically told by the instructor not to refer to launching off a mountain as jumping off, it should be referred to as flying off.
.... I just looked up Rochester Area Flyers, it turns out Mossy Bank and Harriet Hollister are now permanently closed.
I can see how psychologically that might be an advantage


I don't think you can "fly" off OCP either. There's a fence and an observation deck there, that's been there for some years. Doesn't look like it would be easy to get a glider off there cleanly.

I gotta be honest, some of the best views in that area are from roads. If you are driving north on Rt 53, this is one of the best :

42.5734142862823, -77.40199584529162


There used to be a tiny little swath up on Pine Hill, south of Naples, where you had about the best view of that whole area and Canandaigua lake. Somewhere around here:

42.56124581547988, -77.43143577133253

It used to be you could see all this from most of Moore road up there but the land has been purchased and developed and the owners planted a massive screen of conifers.


Terrible zoomed cell phone pic, but this is from Canadice Hill Rd looking south toward Hollister and Hunt Hollow:


Last edited by montcalm; 08-07-2021 at 08:01 PM..
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Old 08-07-2021, 09:09 PM   #55
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The hang-gliding "jumpoff" spots do offer nice views...

Stid Hill from the south trailhead (42.7313, -77.3990) is as tough of as a hike as you will find in the region. The trail shoots up 1,000 feet in just a mile, and then you have to "sidehill" below the private property signs to get to the overlook and the cairn-marked summit above that. This view of the Bristol Mountain ski resort is your reward for completing the journey:



Here's another one in Central New York, on Jones Hill above Tinker Falls:



Back to waterfalls... the one at Eighteen Mile Creek Park south of Buffalo was dry... still had a good time exploring the creek area before dark last evening... it's a mini Zoar Valley...



Went down to the base of West Falls for a better look earlier today...

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Old 08-07-2021, 09:54 PM   #56
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That Stid Hill photo is great. I didn't even know that was publicly accessible.
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Old 08-07-2021, 10:44 PM   #57
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That Stid Hill photo is great. I didn't even know that was publicly accessible.
Thanks. This DEC map shows the southern trailhead near the 64/34 intersection, as well as the state land boundary. What it doesn't show too well is the initial steep trail that goes up to the WMA's southeast boundary. It is easy to follow until it ends abruptly at the private property signs. The best way to get to the launch site from that point is to sidehill below all the posted signs. I think there are faint trails heading in that direction, but they were hard to see in the wintertime, so I just bushwhacked. My old trip report shows more photos from that outing, and AllTrails has a page as well.
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Old 08-08-2021, 08:38 AM   #58
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If you go to Bath NY, there is a park on Sharps Hill aka Mossy Bank, this is another hang gliding site. There is a view of an eagle nest from up there.
That viewpoint south of Bath looks absolutely spectacular on Google Maps, with a 180-degree panorama of the area. Just added it to my wishlist. That has got to be quite a sight when the leaves are changing!

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Old 08-08-2021, 09:29 AM   #59
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Thanks. This DEC map shows the southern trailhead near the 64/34 intersection, as well as the state land boundary. What it doesn't show too well is the initial steep trail that goes up to the WMA's southeast boundary. It is easy to follow until it ends abruptly at the private property signs. The best way to get to the launch site from that point is to sidehill below all the posted signs. I think there are faint trails heading in that direction, but they were hard to see in the wintertime, so I just bushwhacked. My old trip report shows more photos from that outing, and AllTrails has a page as well.
Thanks - I knew it was there, but I didn't know it was on public land. Never took the time to look at the satellite images and WMA boundary.

For some reason I never had much interest in Stid Hill. I recently went to the northern section to hike it because there are plans to improve it for biking. It's ridable as it is, but will need some work to prevent damage. Overall there wasn't much going on over there in terms of hiking. There's a ravine in the North East corner, but only the edge and then it's posted. Anyway, based on that seems like a good place to put bikes - it's got a decent amount of vert, it's got some pitch and not much else of interest. I'm betting they'll have a seasonal closure during big game season, which is NBD.
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Old 08-08-2021, 11:55 AM   #60
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For some reason I never had much interest in Stid Hill. I recently went to the northern section to hike it because there are plans to improve it for biking. It's ridable as it is, but will need some work to prevent damage. Overall there wasn't much going on over there in terms of hiking. There's a ravine in the North East corner, but only the edge and then it's posted. Anyway, based on that seems like a good place to put bikes - it's got a decent amount of vert, it's got some pitch and not much else of interest. I'm betting they'll have a seasonal closure during big game season, which is NBD.
I hiked Stid Hill's northern section a few years ago and would agree it's not the most scenic hiking trail in the region -- or even in the W.M.A. (I'm pretty sure it was a M.U.A. when I visited). Like you said, the terrain would make it more enjoyable on bike.

You know it wasn't that interesting when I hiked around four miles and only took six photos lol. These were the only semi-interesting parts unless you count the stream crossing at the beginning...





OCP earlier that day was far more memorable, particularly in the previously discussed "jumpoff" area...



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