Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve

Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve

An Abnormally Warm Winter Day

We found a trailhead!
I think we were at the main entrance on Pierce Rd.
Even after researching extensively…
I do not know.

When we started, Nathan asked me if I had turned on my MyTracks.
I was glad he asked because when I hike I like to see…
how far I go.
how fast I go.
how long did it take me?

He basically said he didn’t care about those things.
He wanted to have the gps…
In case we needed it to get back to where we began.
I believe I mentioned in my post about Saratoga National Historic Park
I am directionally challenged.
The gps helps to eliminate any quarrel or question of,
“Which way did we come from?”

It was a wetland trail.
Old, wooden pallets made boardwalks and bridges.
Eliminating some of the wet and squishy.
Nathan pointed out an old car…
buried in the ground.
the woods and wild life ignoring its existence.
as if it somehow belonged there.

Of course this leads to a conversation with the question…
How did the car get there?
Speculation about the woods being younger than car occurred.
Maybe it used to be farmland?
Maybe it was just flood plains?
Maybe someone drove it down a trail…
or an old road?

There was another old car.
A little farther back…
Not nearly as “buried” as the one near the trail.

After we passed the cars…
we came upon a wider, sandier trail.
There was a steep hill to our right so we decided to go left.
The path was easy to walk.
Some hills to go up…
and down…
It got the heart beating.
… but it wasn’t by any means strenuous.

Daylight was fading.
A major factor on how long we were able to explore the area.

At a certain point we could see the trail where we started.
Instead of turning around…
going back the way we came…
we took a little deer path across a short distance.
Looping us back to our original path.

The sun setting gave the starkness of winter a magical glow.

Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve has very little information available on it.
Every time I thought I found a site with information…
it would lead me back to Clifton Park’s Town Hall site.
It always went back to a committee called Open Space.

I like gathering new information.
After I’ve been somewhere
I want to know more about that place.
It doesn’t always have to have history attached.
Nature and weather are fascinating enough.
… but it’s nice to be able to learn about an area.

A better understanding of an area helps hikers to be prepared.
Myself, I like to know distances and what terrain to expect.
It helps me know what supplies to bring.
… and mentally prepare for endurance.

A Dwaas Kill Preserve trail map?
I found two.
… but they were both a little difficult to read.
… and they were created for planning trails.
Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve Map is the most recent trail map I could find.
A quick look shows very few existing trails.

I ended up taking my MyTracks information.
… and made a map of the path Nathan and I took.

Comparing the maps I learned Nathan and I did a little jaunt around a sand pit.
If there was a junction by Long Kill…
where we could have turned left to stay on an existing trail…
I never saw it.

I do plan on exploring this park some more.
Perhaps even join an Open Space hike.

After researching.
… and looking at maps
… I did come up with a pretty good idea of how those cars got into the woods.

The train tracks at the top of the hill of the sand pit.
I can imagine the cars.
Being abandoned.
Rolling down the hill.
To their burial ground.

A follow up post I wrote after visiting the park about one year later can be read here! Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve II

Entrance Located on Pierce Rd.
Long Kill.
Winter Berries.
Nathan on the sandy part of the trail.
Sun setting.
Trees tops glowing.

December 26th 2014 – Clifton Park, NY
Distance Traveled – .86 miles