Jack’s Journal: Hartwick Pines State Park

With fall upon us, might I make this suggestion, don’t forget our state parks.

During the summer they are full, but in fall and winter there is still much to enjoy.

“We have lots of hardwood trees, so the color change here is phenomenal. Besides having the spectrum of colors that the hardwoods offer, we have the constant green of the hemlocks and pines so, there are the contrasting colors that make it a beautiful place to stop in the fall,” says Craig Kasmer, Hartwick Pines State Park.

From the trees to the small animals, just walking through a state park this time of year is fantastic. Of course during the winter months, snow shoeing and cross-country skiing takes the lead.

Hartwick Pines State Park is unlike some other state parks because of its location off I-75.

“They are on the expressway, they’ve been driving from somewhere downstate for three hours. They want to get off and stretch their legs, see the big trees, logging museum. So we get a lot of daily use,” explains Craig.

The logging museum has history by itself. Built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corp. 

Something else to enjoy at Hartwick Pines while you are out walking is the dugout canoes being built. Craig and company are using simple metal tools, no chainsaws to construct boats that have roots back 10,000 years.

“What you do is burn the inside of the log. You keep moving the coals back and forth. It’s a long process,” says Craig.

And if the chill of a day might keep you away, the Visitors Center here is a great place to warm with a hot coco. 

We live in a grand state, with wonderful nature to enjoy.

Categories: Jack’s Journal