Swimming Through Trees, by Spencer Morrissey

Canoeing/fishing trip to Little Clear and Grass

Canoeing is not one of those sports where the learning curve is beyond the average recreationist. However, it does take a sort of finesse and, quite honestly, patience with your fellow paddler. Much of what is unnerving to first-time canoegoers is the feeling of instability in the boat. ...

Delving deep into the kill vs. kiln debate

So, is it Cooper Kiln Pond or Cooper Kill Pond? I have seen it both ways. The USGS map for the region reads “Cooper Kill Pond,” while other maps and writings call it “Cooper Kiln Pond.” A kill is a Dutch word meaning creek. It is commonly used where the Dutch settled — the ...

An Adirondack paddle with an Everglades feel

As many of you know, Lake Placid is a hub for hiking mountains of all sizes and trails of all abilities. But what about its close proximity to countless lakes, rivers and ponds? On this spring trip we decided to explore the waters out of Axton Landing. Axton Landing, as many might ...

Ever-changing springtime conditions on Winch Mountain

Fifteen years — that’s how long it’s been since I set foot on Winch Mountain. It was time to revisit an old friend. At nearly 2,700 feet in elevation, it overlooks much of the area, and getting to it isn’t very demanding. The rewarding part about this hike is you don’t have to go ...

Branching off the Northville-Placid Trail

Fulton County is one of those regions that don’t get much traffic in the way of hikers, outside of Kane Mountain that is. My close hiking friend, James “Jimbo” Hopson, also known as “Ledge Hound,” and I try to discover new places, especially in areas where visitors do not tend to ...

Take care of the gear that takes care of you

We would have no ground to stand on if we said this past winter was not conducive to some epic outdoor adventures. I know I sure have covered some serious ground, and my gear, which survived the constant pounding, would wholeheartedly agree. However, it’s time to hibernate most of the ...

A different approach to familiar Blueberry Mountain

I have lived in the Adirondacks all my life, and never at any moment resided too far from the High Peaks Region. But, for some reason, I had never climbed Blueberry Mountain from the Marcy Field trailhead. I have, of course, descended down from “the blueberry” a few times while hiking ...

High Rock side trip worth the diversion

The snowpack in the Adirondacks was steady this winter, making the skiing quite good for much of the season. This was especially the case in the Five Ponds Wilderness Area. A couple of the access trails into the wilderness follow old railroad grades from the time of the Rich Lumber ...

Debar, with a side of Black Peak

Debar Mountain resides in the Debar Mountain Wild Forest (go figure), which resides in Franklin County. However, the pond came before the mountain — in naming that is, kind of like the chicken or the egg debate, but this one seems to be clearer. Debar Pond, which rests to the northeast ...

John Pond hike offers glimpse at old days in ‘Little Canada’

John Pond is an odd-colored gem in the backcountry of the Siamese Ponds Wilderness, whose shores and waters are split by Hamilton and Warren counties. According to the “Property Rights Foundation of America,” John Pond gained its name from a Canadian, John MacKenzie, who moved to the ...

Swimming Through Trees journey begins with blank canvas

So what is “Swimming Through Trees?” Well, I guess it would be shorter to tell you what it isn’t. I can assure you it is not me swinging from tree to tree, pounding my chest and letting out a blood curdling howl. Not usually. It’s more of an overall title that refers to playing in ...