On Thursday, March 26, I took a brisk walk around the soccer park in West Seneca, and captured this bucolic scene.

-Submitted by Paul M. Gannon

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03/27 – PADDLE – Ellicott Creek

Reflections on the creek. I had my first paddle of the year. Put in at Niagara Falls Boulevard and went south. I took a tip from Ellen Two-hat Gibson and wore a woolen watch cap and a sun hat, The weather was cool and bright. Though the picture doesn’t make me look either.
-Submitted by Larry Beahan
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Leslie Salathe and took a walk along the Niagara gorge Friday. It was a gorgeous day and we were able to keep our distance most of the time. It was so great to get out! I really needed a change from the Amherst bike path. We did five miles and lots of steps, and talked about all the great hikes we will be in shape for when we can get back to the mountains.

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With the sunny spring day on Wednesday me and a fellow adk member Debbie decided to hike along the Niagara gorge. We started at the trailhead in Lewiston near Artpark and hiked to Devils hole and proceeded down the long cement staircase and along the lower gorge towards the whirlpool bridge. We made sure to keep the advised 6 foot social distancing throughout our hike and enjoyed our lunch on separate rocks basking in the sun and gazing at mighty churning of the Niagara. My dog Riley managed to mooch some hard boiled egg and chicken breast along with his doggy treats.
We headed back to the trailhead and noticed a greater amount of people all out and about surely feeling the cabin fever as well. We noticed the parking lots were full when heading back towards our separate cars of course. We enjoyed our 10 mile hike maintaining a safe distance. Riley dog jumped in the back seat fully exhausted tongue dangling and we waved farewell until our next adventure!
-Submitted by Maureen Rowley
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LOJ WEEKEND – 03/06/20 – 03/08/20

I attended the annual Adk-Nfc Loj weekend outing March 6-8th hosted by Mary and Richard Schraven. We all stayed in the upper 12 person loft and 3 others stayed in downstairs rooms. Some attendees went cross-country skiing at the Mt Van Hoevenberg Olympic Center while others snowshoed various snow covered trails and mountains.

Sue, Pam, and I went up a couple days earlier and did some winter hiking up Ampersand, Owls Head, and Rocky Peak. We also did a little cross-country skiing through the forest towards Marcy Dam. The weather and conditions were ideal!

Friday night after a yummy hearty dinner we gather for an interesting presentation on the geology of the Adirondacks lead by a staff naturalist. Saturday morning we started the day with a full hot breakfast and headed out on our winter fun filled adventures!

Our group went on a 10 mile hike to Avalanche Lake which was exceptionally stunning with sunshine and the bluest skies imaginable! We enjoyed another delicious dinner together on Saturday and then sat outside around a warm campfire chatting, laughing and gazing at the florescent moon and stars. Another wonderful experience enjoying Adirondacks with fellow club members!

Submitted by Maureen Rowley

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HIKES – CREEKS OF WEST SENECA -03/14 and 03/16/20

On Saturday, March 14, I needed a break from the 24-hour news cycle (all coronavirus, all the time). So, I took a long walk along Cazenovia Creek, in West Seneca. I started at Mill Road Park, and headed upstream. It was a clear, cold day. The early spring thaw had started, so I slipped in the soft, greasy mud in a few places. Pools of meltwater were everywhere. Some of the trees had started to bud, and the quiet was interrupted with a scattering of birdcalls.

I proceeded well past the ice control structure, until I was opposite the high bank adjacent to the old Developmental Center site. That’s when I found it – a beautiful waterfall flowing down into the creek. I paused, and watched, and listened to the cascade of the falls and the murmur of the creek, and felt refreshed.

The following Monday, March 16, I took advantage of the bright, sunny day to visit one of my favorite spots, the Burchfield Center on Union Road. I followed the path upstream along Buffalo Creek, until I reached a side stream. In the calm pool below the bank, I spied a pair of ducks, doing what ducks do best. They floated and paddled along, occasionally dipping their bills down to grab a bite to eat. In this difficult time, there is a lesson to be learned from this placid pair.

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HIKE — Erie County Forestry Trails — 3/14/20

Our cheery group of 7 fit hikers greeted each other with elbow bumps and thoroughly enjoyed 5 miles of rolling terrain and scenic bridges at this WNY gem. We savored virus-free fresh crisp air and early spring trail conditions with traces of snow and the sun peeking out at times to generate some Vitamin D production. We hiked both the Silent Wood and Old Scarbuck trails, plus the extra loop that begins after crossing ‘A Bridge Too Far’.

During our pre-hike 2 days earlier, the Sugar Shanty was operational and we tasted and purchased fresh maple syrup…. Talk about buying local!


Happy Trails!

— Submitted by David and Janet Kowalski

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XC SKI — Knox Farm — 2/15/20

Young Member ladies met on a beautiful, clear … and brisk morning for a 3.5 mile ski in East Aurora’s Knox Farm. For such a gorgeous morning we were lucky to have most of the trails to ourselves! We welcomed a new member to the chapter by introducing her to this lovely state park – weaving in and out of the meadow, we reminisced over past adventures and planning new ones! Some parts of the trails had tracks, others we blazed ourselves – conditions were absolutely perfect!

— Submitted by Mary K. Noack

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SS HIKE — Beaver Meadow Audubon Center — 2/08/20

Our group of 9 snow-lovers enjoyed picture perfect winter hiking conditions for our 3-mile trek throughout the nature trails at Beaver Meadow. Snowshoes were ideal for the several inches of fresh snow this southern venue received, and we feasted on the fresh powder and ice that rested on all the trees and bushes in our view. We began on the Jenny Glen Boardwalk, then climbed the Hawk Ridge Trail to the Long Trail, before circling back via Rusty Stove and Kettle Pond trails to our starting point.

We admired several old trees including balsam, spruce, hemlock and black cherry. We savored a solitary white oak tree near the arboretum that retains its unique rounded leaves throughout the winter. The boardwalk bridges, tree canopies, varied snowy terrain, great weather and nice people made for a perfect Saturday outing.

— Submitted by Janet and David Kowalski

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XC SKI — Byrncliff Outing — 2/16/20

The day was cloudy and cold. The snow was perfect and the trails were well groomed. It was worth the cost of the passes, $14 for seniors. Some meet up with us at the Park-N-Ride in Williamsville, and others met at Bryncliff. There was also a Fat Bike Race on the East side of the resort, so we had to stay on the West side, which was fine. One unlucky ADKer, blew out his nearly new ski boots after the first few runs and had to sit in the restaurant until lunch.

Hot chocolate never tasted so good after a few hours of gentle uphill treks and well-deserved downhill runs. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed it and we agreed that winter in WNY was wonderful when you can spend it like this.

— Submitted by Mary Schraven

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