Current Trail Conditions

Current Trail Conditions and Notable Finds on Your Favorite MHLC Preserves

Before you set out on the trails, check this page for the latest news regarding the conditions at MHLC preserves, as well as trail highlights, hiking tips, and local wildlife notes and sightings! If you’re a regular visitor, we recommend bookmarking this page.

If you have a trail update to report, or would like to volunteer to help make these improvements happen, email volunteer@mohawkhudson.org.

Happy Trails Tuesday: February 13, 2018

Beaver Scat at Mosher Marsh Preserve.

Even under fresh snow, the trails and parking areas are still quite icy. Microspikes and trekking poles may be needed to hike safely. Don’t forget to sign in and carry a map from the kiosk with you on your walk.

Strawberry Fields Nature Preserve: The cross-country ski trial is groomed, and the driveway and parking area are clear. Skis, snowshoes, and all-wheel drive are recommended to access and enjoy this preserve.

Mosher Marsh: Trails through the frozen wetland are icy, trek cautiously with proper gear. 

Keleher Preserve: Until spring, we have learned the hard way that the winter entrance is still a necessity! From Albany, take Delaware Avenue (Rt. 443) west through Clarksville. Make a left onto Cass Hill Road. Continue approximately 2.7 miles to Gulf Hill Road. Turn right on Gulf Hill road. This is a dirt road. (While it says seasonal use, it is open up to the Preserve.) At the fork (about a mile) keep left. Preserve parking area will be on the right after approximately 1/2 mile.

Van Dyke Preserve: The ramp leading down to this parking area is very slippery. Until warmer temperatures, snow tires are recommended. Otherwise, please park along Meads Lane in a visible section and walk to the preserve on foot.


Happy Trails Tuesday: January 30, 2018

With freeze and thaw cycles occurring and limited snow cover, many of our trails in higher elevations are very icy. Microspikes and trekking poles may be needed to hike safely. Don’t forget to sign in and carry a map from the kiosk with you on your walk. 

Icy trails at the Bozen Kill Preserve

Bozen Kill Preserve: Trails are extremely icy. Use caution and only attempt to hike with ice-gripping footwear and trekking poles.

Strawberry Fields Nature Preserve: Parking area may be icy, so four-wheel drive and studded snow tires are recommended. Parking is also available at the bottom of the drive so long as the road access is kept open.

Keleher Preserve:  A truck or four-wheel drive is recommended. Use the winter entrance route by following these directions: From Albany, take Delaware Avenue (Rt. 443) west through Clarksville. Make a left onto Cass Hill Road. Continue approximately 2.7 miles to Gulf Hill Road. Turn right on Gulf Hill road. This is a dirt road. (While it says seasonal use, it is open up to the Preserve.) At the fork (about a mile) keep left. Preserve parking area will be on the right after approximately 1/2 mile.

 

The frozen Mohawk River from Fox Preserve.

Happy Trails Tuesday: January 16, 2018

This winter, many MHLC preserve parking areas will be plowed regularly. However, plowers are often volunteers and may not be able to get out to preserves immediately after a storm. The following preserves will have regularly-plowed winter access:

Ashford Glen: Parking is available along Ashford Lane.

Bozen Kill Preserve: The parking area on Westfall Road will be plowed.

Fox Preserve: The parking area on 4220 River Road will be plowed.

Keleher Preserve: A truck or four-wheel drive is recommended. Use the winter entrance route by following these directions: From Albany, take Delaware Avenue (Rt. 443) west through Clarksville. Make a left onto Cass Hill Road. Continue approximately 2.7 miles to Gulf Hill Road. Turn right on Gulf Hill road. This is a dirt road. (While it says seasonal use, it is open up to the Preserve.) At the fork (about a mile) keep left. Preserve parking area will be on the right after approximately 1/2 mile.

Normans Kill East and West: Several spaces in the Novus Engineering parking area and Normans Kill Boulevard parking area are available.

Phillipin Kill Preserve: Two spaces are available in the Mansions parking area closest to the preserve entrance.

Holt Preserve: Use the parking area at the end of Lower Copeland Hill Road to access the entire Holt Preserve by walking the trails or the old road section to the Upper Hold area.

Restifo Preserve: Parking is available along Maple Avenue Extension.

Strawberry Fields Nature Preserve: The drive up to the preserve from Cranes Hollow Road will be plowed after snowfall, in addition to the parking area above when necessary. The drive is steep and four wheel drive and snow tires are recommended. Parking is also available at the bottom of the drive so long as the road access is kept open. 

Swift Wetland: Parking is available at the end of Evelyn Drive.

Wolf Creek Falls: The parking area on Bozenkill Road will be plowed.

More preserves will be added to this list as our plowing efforts continue to expand, so keep checking back throughout the season!

Happy Trails Tuesday: December 19, 2017

Snow at Keleher Preserve

With the winter weather comes snowshoe, fat bike, and cross-country ski season at our preserves. As snow covers our trails and temperatures dip, be sure to dress and prepare appropriately with waterproof hiking boots, layers of non-cotton clothing, a hat, and gloves. Larger preserves like Keleher and Wolf Creek Falls may be more challenging to navigate with snowy paths, so bring a map from the kiosk with you on your walk. Always be sure to sign in.

This winter, many MHLC preserve parking areas will be plowed regularly. However, plowers are often volunteers and may not be able to get out to preserves immediately after a storm. Check the latest Trails Update for up-to-date plowing and parking information on our preserves.

Happy Trails Tuesday: December 5, 2017

Fluffy cattail heads in Berne are drying up before the winter.

After the leaves fall and before the snow flies is the perfect time to see the lay of the land. What was once a cloud of green is now open views, showing us rolling hills, valleys, and interesting details. Our preserves are feature dozens of winding rock walls, many of which are still in great condition. As you hike, try to decipher what these lands used to be, and don’t forget to bring your nature passport!

Restifo Preserve: Bird boxes have been installed here to kick off our new monitoring program. Throughout 2018, if you would like to be involved checking and documenting who is using these boxes, email volunteer@mohawkhudson.org.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached.

Keleher Preserve: A section of the Orange Trail is being rerouted. Please follow the original trail until this reroute is complete.

Normans Kill West: The railing along the bridge paralleling the Normans Kill is loose. Please use caution when crossing this bridge, and take a look at the foot-long catalpa tree leaves on the ground!

 

Happy Trails Tuesday: November 20, 2017

Joe Pye Weed plants are adorned with seed puffs at Keleher Preserve.

Looking for a fun Thanksgiving activity? Visit one of our 18 MHLC Preserves to work up an appetite or walk off turkey dinner with family. As a reminder this hunting season, there is no hunting permitted on MHLC preserves.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached.

Keleher Preserve: A section of the Orange Trail is being rerouted. Please follow the original trail until this reroute is complete.

Normans Kill West: The railing along the bridge paralleling the Normans Kill is loose. Please use caution when crossing this bridge, and take a look at the foot-long catalpa tree leaves on the ground!

 

Happy Trails Tuesday: November 7, 2017

The final bursts of fall foliage colors are almost off the trees. Enjoy the last of autumn before the snow falls on the trails. As temperatures dip, it’s important to be aware of ticks. Wear bug or tick spray if you choose, tuck socks into pants, and do a thorough tick-check back at home.

Teasels are beautiful plants which you can spot easily this time of year.

Fox Preserve: Visit this new walking and birdwatching destination in Colonie, and enjoy the oak trees – some of the oldest in the state – which line part of the Orange Trail. Bring lunch or a snack to eat at the Mohawk overlook picnic area.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached.

Keleher Preserve: A section of the Orange Trail is being rerouted. Please follow the original trail until this reroute is complete.

Lower Holt Preserve: The section of trails in the Lower Holt along the Red loop are very wet. Please wear waterproof books if traveling on these trails.

 

 

Happy Trails Tuesday: October 24, 2017

Fox Preserve: The Fox Preserve was officially opened this weekend! Visit this new walking and birdwatching destination in Colonie, and enjoy the old oak trees which line part of the Orange Trail.

Van Dyke: Trails may be slippery. Please wear hiking boots, use poles for extra support, and walk through the mud, instead of around it, to prevent erosion.  

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached. Please watch out for wild parsnip, a flowering dill-like plant found across the country, that causes skin irritation. A sign is posted on the kiosk to warn visitors and help identify this noxious plant.

 

Happy Trails Tuesday: September 26, 2017

Deep purple and lilac-colored New England asters are dotting our meadows, fields, and trails this fall. Catch the leaves beginning to turn early at one of our Helderberg Escarpment preserves. Both Keleher and Bennett Hill Preserves are showing color with their elevated views of the Helderbergs, so please visit and share a photo or two of the season’s foliage with us.

Please ensure the beauty of our preserves – all MHLC Preserves are carry-in, carry-out – please hike out any wrappers or garbage you make and leave only footprints.

Strawberry Fields Nature PreserveFringed Gentian, a rare native flower distinguished by its beautiful purple-blue color, will soon be blooming at this preserve. Follow the Fringed Gentian spur with Preserve Steward Jeff Leon during the Fringed Gentian Walk on Saturday, October 7th to see this amazing plant. 

Van Dyke: Trails are slippery after a week of rain. Please wear hiking boots, use poles for extra support, and walk through the mud, instead of around it, to prevent erosion.  

Normans Kill West: The railing along the bridge paralleling the Normans Kill is loose. Volunteers and staff will be working in the coming week to repair and replace it. A sign is posted to warn hikers. Please use caution when crossing this bridge.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached. Please watch out for wild parsnip, a flowering dill-like plant found across the country, that causes skin irritation. A sign is posted on the kiosk to warn visitors and help identify this noxious plant.

 

Happy Trails Tuesday: September 12, 2017

Joe Pye weed, a native pollinator plant.

Golden rod, Joe Pye weed, and aster are dotting our meadows, fields, and trails. Catch the leaves beginning to turn early at one of our Helderberg Escarpment preserves. Both Keleher and Bennett Hill Preserves are showing color with their elevated views of the Helderbergs, so please visit and share a photo or two of the season’s foliage with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or by e-mailing connect@mohawkhudson.org.

Van Dyke: Trails are slippery after a week of rain. Please wear hiking boots, use poles for extra support, and walk through the mud, instead of around it, to prevent erosion.  

Normans Kill West: The railing along the bridge paralleling the Normans Kill is loose. Volunteers and staff will be working in the coming week to repair and replace it. A sign is posted to warn hikers. Please use caution when crossing this bridge.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk once the end of the long boardwalk is reached. Please watch out for wild parsnip, a flowering dill-like plant found across the country, that causes skin irritation. A sign is posted on the kiosk to warn visitors and help identify this noxious plant.

Happy Trails Tuesday: August 29, 2017

The end of a hot, rainy summer is approaching, and trails are drying out throughout MHLC preserves. While on the trails, you will likely hear the recognizable buzz of cicadas as they crawl out of the ground and up the roots of trees to feed on nutrients in the bark.

Boardwalk at Mosher Marsh

Mosher Marsh:The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section surrounding the bridge has been closed, modifying this to an out-and-back walk to the end of the long boardwalk. Please watch out for wild parsnip, a flowering, dill-like plant found across the country, which causes skin irritation. A sign is posted on the kiosk to warn visitors and help you identify this plant. A more pleasant find is the pink fleabane daisy, a pretty, non-noxious flower which can be spotted as you walk past the first field.

Wolf Creek Falls: This Preserve is home to one of several of MHLC’s “hidden” musical bridges. Find the bridge, play a note, and connect to nature via song. A color map of this Preserve was recently added to our website to make navigation more straight forward. 

Holt Preserve: On display here are late-blooming, native flowers like yellow smooth sumac and Joe-Pye weed are attracting pollinators still. These species can be found while hiking the trails around the pond.  

Keleher Preserve: Additional bridges and ramps have been installed throughout the newly-remarked trail system. Bring your mountain bike for a great ride up and down through the trees.

All MHLC Preserves are carry-in, carry-out – please hike out any wrappers or garbage you make.

Happy Trails Tuesday: August 15, 2017

Keleher Preserve:  A group of hikers spooked a large black bear last week at Keleher. The bear was surprised by the voices of the hikers and ran away into the brush. It is important to remember that large animals like bears, bobcat, and even moose may be encountered in your nature walks, even on popular MHLC trails and in those Preserves at which we feel most at ease. To avoid encounters with black bear, be sure to occasionally make noise on the trail by singing or talking out loud. Also, be sure to carry in and carry out: don’t leave garbage or other food items along trails.

Strawberry Fields. Photo by Jeff Leon.

To read more about black bears and what to do if you encounter a black bear, visit the NYS Department of Conservation’s website by clicking here.

Strawberry Fields: All trails are mowed and summer’s last wildflowers are in bloom. Look out for lavender-colored bee balm, woodland sunflower, black-eyed Susan, red cardinal flower, and pink and white fleabane daisy.

Bozen Kill Preserve: Mud mitigation is taking place in the field off the parking area. Stepping stones have been laid down through the field to allow for drainage off the hillside and safe passage for visitors. Hikers looking to avoid the mud should follow the blue trail around this area.

Jake Hill deconstructs the Bennett Hill bridge.

Bennett Hill: Old corduroy log boardwalks have been removed to allow better drainage. Persistent muddy spots remain.  The preserve’s second bridge on the Green trail was replaced earlier this spring, and this week, the old bridge was deconstructed and removed.

Restifo Sanctuary: This tiny trail system in Westerlo is a serene, beautiful spot for plein air painters. The trail is short, but affords views of the wetland, old rock walls, and karst geology.

Mosher Marsh: The first bridge along the loop trail has been flooded by beaver activity, and the trail section around it has been closed modifying this to an out-and-back walk. Please watch out for wild parsnip, a flowering dill-like plant found across the country, that causes skin irritation. A sign is being posted on the kiosk to warn visitors.

 

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