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Get Aquainted With Winter at Allegany State Park

Fun, FREE Programming in the Great Outdoors!

FIRST DAY HIKE

Start your new year off right! Join us at Allegany State Park for our Annual First Day Hike - a healthy and relaxing way for people of all ages to get outside and enjoy the winter beauty of the area. The Environmental Education Department is offering two hikes this year of varying lengths and difficulty on the Quaker side of the park. Blacksnake Mountain (Site 41) on ASP RT 3 is a three-mile loop using an old railroad as part of the trail. The more difficult trail climbs to large cherry, hemlock and tulip poplar trees.  The new one-mile Science Lake trail (Site 40) on ASP RT 3 meanders around the lake to the foundations of the “School in the Woods” which once occupied this area in the 1920’s. Guided hikes will begin at 11:00am at Blacksnake and 1:00pm at Science Lake, however, feel free to hike either trail at anytime throughout the day.

The First Day Hike will run from 10:30am to 2:00pm. Participants should begin the hike by stopping in to register and pick up a map at Camp Turner in the Quaker area. Free hot chocolate, coffee, and tea will be provided during the event. The Friends of Allegany State Park will be serving chili and hot dogs for all our hungry hikers starting at noon. Dress for the weather and be sure to wear appropriate footwear and/or snowshoes. Hope to see you on January 1st!

FAT BIKES FUN RIDES

The Allegany State Park Environmental Education and Recreation Department and the Western New York Mountain Bike Association (WNYMBA), are excited about hosting another year of Fun Fat Bike Rides on Friday, January 3; Friday, February 7; and Friday, March 13, at 6:30 PM with the ride starting at 7:00 PM. Although pre- registration is not required, check in will be in the main lobby of the Red House Administration Building. Bring warm clothes, a helmet, a headlight, and sense of adventure. Need a bike? A limited amount of fat bikes are available at no charge. Contact 716-354- 9101, ext. 232 before noon on the day of the ride.

The 3-5-mile fun rides are for all levels and will last up to 2 hours, depending on the weather. Riders will wind through the Red House area of the park. All riders are invited to attend the after-ride social hosted by WNYMBA in Red House Picnic shelter. Come by for hot dogs and door prizes.

Fat bikes are the monster trucks of the bike world. With big tires, typically 3.8 in (97 mm) or wider, they are designed for low pressure to allow riding on soft, unstable terrain, such as snow, sand, bogs and mud. They have been around since the early 1900’s, but it wasn’t until frame builders in both Alaska and Mexico began experimenting with different frames, parts and tire widths in the 1990’s that “Fat Bikes” were born.

Look for more bike rides on non-holiday Monday nights starting January 27th.  Meet at the Red House Administration Building at 5:30 PM with the ride starting at 6:00 PM.   A limited number of bikes are available free of charge for the program.  Please pre-register by calling 716 354-9101, ext. 232. If there is no snow, any bike is welcomed.

WINTER SNOWSHOE HIKES

Join us every Tuesday evening at 4:30pm for a trek into the sunset at Allegany State Park. Beginning January 7th, Park Naturalists will lead interpretive snowshoe treks (snow dependent) or hikes if there is not enough snow. Witness a breathtaking winter sunset at Stone Tower, visit a secret beaver pond or hike along a creek. Meeting places and hikes will vary. Be sure to dress for the weather, bring a flashlight, water, a snack, and a sense of adventure. Need snowshoes?  No problem, we have several pairs to rent for FREE!  Please call to reserve snowshoes by noon the day of each hike.

CROSS-COUNTRY SKI CLINICS

Is trying a new sport on your New Year’s Resolutions list? Stating on Friday, January 10th, the Environmental Education Department will be leading cross-country ski clinics and tours at 10:30am on the Art Roscoe trails of Allegany State Park. Cross-country skiing is an excellent low impact exercise, easy to learn, and a lifetime sport. Limited rental equipment is available free of charge. To reserve a pair of skis, boots and poles please call 716 354 9101 ext. 232 before 9:00am the day of the program. Ski clinics and tours will operate out of the Summit Warming Hut on January 10th, 17th, 24th and February 7th, 14th, 21st, 28th.  All levels are welcome. If there is no snow, the program will be cancelled.

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees more than 250 parks, historic sites, recreational trails, golf courses, boat launches and more, which are visited by 74 million people annually. A recent study found that New York State Parks generates $5 billion in park and visitor spending, which supports nearly 54,000 jobs and over $2.8 billion in additional state GDP. For more information on any of these recreation areas, call 518-474-0456 or visit www.parks.ny.gov, connect with us on Facebook, or follow on Instagram and Twitter.