This is a guest blog by Bruce. (See home page; Dickens has been diagnosed with bladder stones and will have surgery soon to remove them).
The trail sign and the map say this is a 7 mile round trip hike, but my guidebook says 5 miles. The trail has a sign that says dogs must be on leash. It also says no ATVs but I did see one on the trail on my way back. For the most part the trail is in good shape but it does have a series of flooded areas due to our very wet Spring. I would not recommend this trail for dogs because it is also used by horseback riders and you don't want to spook a horse that might be frightened by seeing a dog.
I started hiking at 10:05 AM and saw a series of beautiful waterfalls. Then I spent an hour hiking through an area just filled with profuse mountain laurel, acres upon acres of it. This was obviously THE time to climb this mountain.
I stopped just below the summit to sit on a rock and quaff some ice tea. Two young German ladies came up the trail and spoke with me. Later, they took my photo on the summit and I took theirs.
The summit has beautiful views of valleys down below as well as mountains in Massachusetts and a vast panorama out west showing the high Catskills on the horizon. I arrived at the summit at 12:12 PM and had lunch. I was not bothered by bugs all day, although there were some ants on the boulders where I had lunch. What is a picnic without ants?
By 1:04 PM I left the top and met a couple coming up the trail with an enormous Newfoundland named Huckleberry and a small dog named Finn. On the way down I also saw a garter snake and an unidentified pretty blue flower. I was out at 3:08 PM.