SNSA matching grants- donations needed

Shawangunk Nordic Ski Association is a club that’s been promoting cross-country skiing in the Gunks area (New Paltz, Gardiner, etc). Some of the attentiveness to grooming at Minnewaska has been due in part to the support of SNSA.

Now the club has gotten grants from Fischer Sports and the Open Space Institute toward grooming the 6- mile River to Ridge trail that runs from New Paltz up to the Gunks and Mohonk trail systems (R2R Facebook site). The trail has been open just a year. For more, see the article at HudsonValley1.

Grants alone aren’t enough to support grooming, so they need additional funds. Mountain Brauhaus (the restaurant at the intersection of 299 and 44/55 at the foot of the cliffs) is offering a matching grant. For more info, see the SNSA Facebook site from Dec. 27, and donate at the SNSA website.

Some text from the post on mhvxcs:

Many of you enjoyed skiing the River to Ridge Trail a few weeks ago when OSI was able to groom the trail. This event, however, was merely a test run – the equipment is now stationed at Minnewaska State Park Preserve, where it resides each winter.

The Fischer Access & Engagement Grant is the catalyst that will allow us to offer free, groomed nordic skiing access. We hope you will consider making a tax-deductible donation to the cause.

Shawangunk Nordic Ski Association

Imagine taking an easy 6-mile ski from New Paltz up to the Gunks, skiing around the cliffs, having a snack, then skiing back to town for lunch or early dinner? What could be better?

Get in a last-minute donation now before 2020, and benefit all cross-country skiers in the lower Hudson valley.

What’s your getaway?

Minnewaska parking lot construction

There are constraints on parking up at the lake, which is the usual startoff point for skiing:

Skiers should be advised that the only open parking area in the Lake Minnewaska area, presently, is the new parking area across from the maintenance garage. Access across the Wildmere field is blocked due to construction, so skiers will need to walk up the road and through the old Wildmere Parking lot to get to the the West side of Lake Minnewaska. Or, skiers will need to ski around the south end of Lake Minnewaska, first, to get to the trails on the West side of the lake.

From antelope4455 (Minnewaska State Park)

For those who don’t know that Minnewaska used to have a large hotel up at the top of the drive overlooking the lake, this might need some explanation. Below is a graphic of what I interpret the park staffer is saying, using a really old map that shows where the hotel used to be:

Minnewaska state park parking construction at the old hotel location

The original parking lot at the very top of the drive, and the open field that served as a spot for skiers to get into their skis, are closed off. The parking lot just down the drive is currently the only parking up there, and that probably means less capacity overall.

Most people going skiing head for the Lower Awosting or Upper Awosting trails on the west side of the lake, so they’ll now walk up the road and past the construction site to access the trailhead. Unfortunately, the flatter open area at the top is not accessible for use as a practice area.