MTHS Blog

The Mountain Top Historical Society will sponsor a hike of South Mountain on September 13 as part of the 2014 Hudson River Ramble. Led by Bob Gildersleeve, author of Catskill Mountain House Trail Guide, the hike will take participants along one of the most scenic footpaths in the Catskills passing by Layman's Monument, Council Bluff, Sunset Rock, Inspiration Point and Artist's Rock. Time permitting, hikers will also see Split Rocks, Bowlder Rock, and Fat Man's Delight before the hike finishes. All of these locations were known to Hudson River School artists and 19th century tourists. The location of Council Bluff and Artist's Rock were not widely known until recently and the more modern spelling 'Boulder' has taken the place of the spelling often used in the 19th Century. Views of Kaaterskill Clove and the Hudson Valley that inspired Hudson River School artists and generations of residents and visitors to the Catskills are abundant along the walk. This is a moderate hike with a climb of about 450 ft. and a distance of about 4.8 miles. The trail has rocky footing in some sections so good hiking footwear should be worn. Bring food and water. Limited to 12 hikers so please register. Register by calling the Mountain Top Historical Society at (518) 589-6657 or by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Meet at the MTHS Campus at 9:00am.

PLEASE NOTE:
A controversial decision by NYS Department of Environmental Conservation has opened Early Bear Hunting Season from September 6 through September 21. Hunters are allowed to use a variety of weapons including shotguns and rifles. Our hike was scheduled prior to the approval of the extended season and is in the popular hiking region contiguous with North-South Lake campground. The area of our hike is part of the area open to the extended Bear Hunting season. Hikers should wear bright colors.

The Mountain Top Historical Society celebrated its 40th anniversary Sunday, August 10th with a ceremony honoring the Society's volunteers, music by the band Rhythm and Blues, and a presentation by Larry Tompkins. Larry, a former board member and past president of the MTHS, presented Out Windham Way, a preview of his upcoming Black Dome Press book. The presentation featured a photographic tour of much of the Town of Windham as it appeared in the late 19th and early 20th Century. Larry has been collecting images of the Windham area for 35 years and has a vast knowledge of the people, homes, and lifestyles of the era. His profusely illustrated book is scheduled to be released soon. Larry poses here with Society board member and former editor of The Windham Journal, Sidonia Palace.

Natural and Historical Landscapes are Nancy de Flon's passion.  Whether the grand landscape or an intimate forest close-up, a colorful old barn or an abandoned ruin, Nancy devotes her photographic talents to capturing the beauty, drama and poignancy of these scenes.  She searches for just the right place and time in the Catskills, in the Hudson Valley and in New England.  The co-author of a recently published book, Historic Hudson Valley: A Photographic Tour, Nancy will be exhibiting her work at the MTHS Visitors'; Center at the Mountain Top Historical Society's Visitors'; Center on Route 23A in Haines Falls from August 3, 2014 through Labor Day. An opening reception will be held at the Visitors'; Center on Sunday, August 3 from 2:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.  Come in and meet Nancy, chat with her about her work and enjoy her photographs.  Her artwork and books will be available for sale during regular hours: Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 1:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. and from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Many thanks to the volunteers who put their time and hard work into sprucing up the storage building near the KRT parking lot. The building was a leftover piece of the main building that was moved to Rte. 23A to become our Visitors' Center and was looking pretty forlorn. The volunteers replaced board and batten siding where needed, repaired the roof edge and sprayed a coat of paint on the entire building. It now looks a lot more respectable and cared for. Currently being used for storage, it is a solid building that we hope will play a bigger role at the MTHS some day in the future.

Our thanks to Dick Haines, the organizer and his mighty crew: Artie Fries, Randy Hoose, Joe McGowan, Gary Slutzky, George Van Dyke (the man with the paint sprayer) and Gibby Van Dyke with help from his friend, Kelly.

At the same time, the Visitors' Center is getting a fresh paint job by Dan Kaminski with partial funding by The Hunter Foundation. Our thanks to Dan and to the Foundation for keeping us looking good.

Thank you to our members and donors without whose support none of the work we do would be possible.