ECOS welcomes you to join us on our series of guided Tuesday morning walks. Meeting time at the trailhead is 9:30 a.m.  Carpool meeting times vary; trips involving a lengthy drive have been set at an earlier carpool meeting time. You may meet us at the trailhead at 9:30a.m., if you prefer.  Directions below are from the carpool meeting place.

You may want to bring your trekking poles or sticks for hills, mud, water, or ice along the trails.  Deer ticks and poison ivy may be a problem. 
Please take appropriate precautions.

MAY 1   Shenentaha Creek Park:  Shenentaha, meaning “deer water” in the Iroquois language, flows along the eastern boundary of this small park in Saratoga County.  Deep bowls in the rock in this woodland may have formed from glacial action, or from Iroquois use as mortars.  Spring flowers to be seen include red trillium, trout lily, Canada mayflower, hepatica, Solomon’s seal, early meadow rue.  Jackie Donnelly will be our guide.

Directions: To carpool, meet at 8:30 a.m. at the Glenville Queen plaza on Rt. 50.

 From the Glenville Queen, follow Rt. 50 north through Burnt Hills to the traffic light at the intersection of Outlet Rd.; turn right on Outlet Rd.  At the end of Outlet, turn left onto Lake Rd.  It ends at East Line Rd., where you turn left.  Shortly you will see the driveway into the Park on your right.  Walk down the gravel road past the playgrounds; cross the field on your left, and go along the edge of the woods to the trail into the woods.

MAY 8   Paint Mine at Thacher Park: Paint Mine Trail has rich limestone soils that support a variety of woodland wildflowers. The higher elevation means a later start to the blooming succession. We may see bloodroot, trillium, early meadow rue, blue cohosh, baneberry, wild ginger, and many others. The Paint Mine Trail runs alongside Minelot Creek, climbing uphill through hemlock northern hardwood forest. With Nancy Engel as our leader, we’ll walk up to a wetland overlook, then back down the hill.

Directions: To carpool meet at 8:30 at the Crosstown Plaza on Rt. 7 and Watt St., opposite Empire Vision.  Out of the plaza, turn right onto Watt St., and then another right onto Rt. 7.  Take the ramp onto I-890 east; follow to x9B toward Rt. 146.  Turn left onto Carmen Rd. (Rt. 146). Rt. 146 makes a left at the traffic light onto Rt. 20, and then turns right toward Altamont in about a mile.  Once in Altamont, drive up the escarpment on Rt. 156 then turn left onto Old Stage Rd.  Follow Old Stage Rd. until it ends, then bear left onto Rt. 157/Thompson’s Lake Rd.  Drive about 1 mile and turn left onto Ketcham Rd.  At the end of Ketcham Rd. turn left onto Thacher Park Rd.  Drive about 1 mile to the Paint Mine parking area on the right.  If this parking area is closed, turn around and drive back to the Visitor Center parking lot.  We will walk to the trailhead from there.

MAY 15   High Point Trail at Thacher Park:  Although by May the Hepatica and Bloodroot are long gone, there are many spring ephemerals still in bloom. Though not as well known, these too are delightful.  We’ll learn about their myths and legends as well as the way people have used these plants in the past.  The High Point Trail is a flat loop trail, an easy stroll through the woods with naturalist Sigrin Newell.

Directions: To carpool meet at 8:30 a.m. at the Crosstown Plaza on Rt. 7 and Watt Street, opposite Empire Vision.  Out of the plaza, turn right onto Watt Street and then another right onto Rt. 7. Take the ramp onto I-890 east; follow to x9B toward Rt. 146. Turn left onto Carmen Road (Rt. 146).  Rt. 146 makes a left at the traffic light onto Rt. 20, and then turns right toward Altamont in about a mile.  Once in Altamont, drive up the escarpment on Rt. 156 then turn left onto Old Stage Road. The trailhead will be on the left after a couple of miles.

MAY 22   Erie Canal Trail at Schoharie Crossing:  The walking trail is the old towpath for the Enlarged Erie Canal from the 1840’s, so the trip has as much historical as botanical interest.  Pat Rush will be our guide.  We’ll leave cars at the end of the path, in Fort Hunter, so we can enjoy walking the entire two and a half mile distance.  (Some might want to walk the entire round trip, from Yankee Hill and Putman’s Canal Store, to Fort Hunter and return.)  Members of the Empire State Volksporters may join us for this walk. 

Directions: To carpool meet at 8:45 a.m. at the Office Max parking lot, opposite the Rotterdam Square Mall (Now Viaport) on Campbell Road.  Turn left out of the parking lot onto Campbell Road.  Head west on Rt. 890 to Rt. 5S.  Take Rt. 5S west through the intersection with Rt. 30 in Amsterdam.  After you pass the Target shipping center, bear right onto Main Street in Fort Hunter.  Immediately turn right onto Queen Ann Road.  The Yankee Hill picnic area, Lock 28, and Putman’s Lock Store are located two and half miles down on the left.

MAY 29   Woods Hollow:  Located in Saratoga County near Ballston Spa, this preserve features quite a variety of habitats, from pond, marsh, and woodland to pine forest and sand dune/sandpit.  There are pine barrens plants growing in the sandy areas.  A wide variety of spring wildflowers grow in the woodlands and along the shore of the pond.  Elizabeth Collins will lead this trip. 

Directions:  Meet at 8:30 a.m. to carpool from the Glenville Queen on Rt. 50.  Take Rt. 50 north through the village of Ballston Spa.  At the north edge of the village, turn left on Northline Rd.  Go west to the main Preserve entrance on the right, a short distance before the intersection with Rowland St.

JUNE 5   Wilton Scout Camp Parcel:  An area in Saratoga County noted for its pine bush habitat, we should enjoy pink lady slippers and lupines in bloom and may even see the Karner Blue Butterfly.  Ed Kautz will lead. 

Directions: Meet at 8:30 a.m. to carpool from the Target near Glenville Queen on Rt. 50 near Glenridge Road; park facing Rt. 50 with the diner on your right.  Take Rt. 50 north toward Saratoga, roughly eight and a half miles, and turn right onto Brookline Rd.  About half a mile brings you to a right onto Rt. 67; follow this to the Northway; take the Northway north,  continuing past Saratoga to x16.  Turn right onto Ballard Rd., and another quick right onto Edie Rd.  At about a mile, turn left onto Scout Rd.  Look for the Preserve parking on the left. 

JUNE 12   Landis Arboretum, Native Plant Trail:  Ed Miller will be our guide.  The Arboretum’s native plant trail is about a half mile long, a bit more getting to start and back.  A small  hill is involved.   We will be going slowly to observe closely.  By June most leaves and some flowers should be out.  The Arboretum’s collection of native NY trees, shrubs and vines is the most complete in the state with well over 200 species, all labeled and grouped for maximum teaching value.  Picnic tables are available for lunch.  There is an indoor room in case of inclement weather, but we’ll walk rain or shine.

Directions: To carpool meet at 8:30 a.m. at the Office Max parking lot, opposite the Rotterdam Square Mall (Now Viaport) on Campbell Road.  Turn left out of the parking lot onto Campbell Road. Take I-90 west to the I-88 exit, x25A. Take I-88 to Duanesburg, x24.  Turn onto Rt. 20 to Esperance. After about 8 miles, after crossing Schoharie Creek, take the immediate right turn onto Charleston St. and follow up the hill, keeping right onto Lape Rd.; there will be signs to the Arboretum.  Meet at parking lot.