Posted by: winteridge | July 19, 2014

Pitcher Hill


Originally posted on Tug Hill Paradise For Sale:

A winter scene

A winter scene

Here is your rare, perhaps once in a lifetime opportunity to own your own wilderness vacation paradise on beautiful pristine Tug Hill, snow capital of the Northeast.  If you are a snowmobiler, hunter, fisherman, ATVer, or nature lover who enjoys his “elbow room”, this may be the place for you. We have over 300 acres of woodland, complete with a large camp, forest, ponds, trails, and lots of room to roam.

The Tug Hill Plateau comprises over 2100 square miles in Upstate New York. There are an estimated 150,000 acres of mostly unbroken forests, with 4000 miles of rivers and streams. Here are the headwaters of 4 major north country rivers. Situated off the east end of Lake Ontario, “The Tug’s” lake effect snowfall is legendary, and it has become a mecca for winter sports enthusiasts. Annual snows average over 200 inches, and have measured up over…

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Posted by: winteridge | December 29, 2013

Remembering Dall Deweese


For those who were interested in my ongoing Deweese knife story, I finally decided to create one of my own.  I found on ebay a beautiful hand-forged Damascus blade in a similar design.  To this I decided to add handles from one of my whitetail deer antlers.  I quickly discovered that few antlers in my collection were large enough for this, but I found a couple.  After much trial and error, and a few ruined antler slabs, I believe I am nearly there.  It is still a work in progress…maybe it will be ready for next deer season.  It is kind of fun, though, and like most projects, it would be easier done with the proper tools and a bit of knowhow.  I have neither, so I learn the hard way.  I will probably show off the finished project when it is done to my satisfaction, but here is an idea of how it will look:

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Posted by: winteridge | November 4, 2013

Does A Bear Really……?


Does A Bear Really......?

Recent visitor to our Tug Hill gamecam. I would like to have been there…well, maybe not…

Posted by: winteridge | October 24, 2013

Half-Fast?


Interesting to note how the very same commenter will post a complaint on my blog how slowly my blog loads up and that I need to fix it, then on the same day comment how wonderful my blog is and how fast it loads on his blackberryipod or whatever.  Is it really about me?

 

Posted by: winteridge | September 20, 2013

Beaver Lake Buck


 

I had the thrill of watching this beauty yesterday. Off limits, though.

Posted by: winteridge | June 21, 2013

The Tug Hill Railroad


Snowmobilers, hunters, fishermen, and lost hikers who have spent much time on the Tug Hill have surely visited or at least heard of such exotic locations as Montague, Osceola, Monteola, Page, Michigan Mills, Hooker, and Tabolt Corners.  Many snowmobilers who have traveled past these locations probably never knew that they were visiting the site of Tug Hill’s short-lived Glenfield & Western Railroad, fondly known as the “Old Gee Whiz”.

I recently came across a delightful little book covering the history of this line, written by Brian D. Mumford, a Tug Hill native, and Frederick J. Schneider.  Since most people will probably never see this book, which had a limited private publication, I will share with you some of the highlights.

The G&W came into being in 1900, when lumber companies like Page & Fairchild and Gould Paper decided they needed a better way than horses and sleighs to transport the seemingly endless supply of virgin logs and lumber from The Tug.  The only waterway large enough for driving logs was too far south, others were either too small or ended in large gulfs where they left the plateau.  The railroad was built from Glenfield, where it met the NY Central Railroad, up the steep sides of the plateau to Page, Michigan Mills, and other locations, eventually reaching 32 miles of tracks.  The railroad used at least 3 different engines in hauling, each a bit larger than the previous version.  These logging camps and sawmills were thriving communities for a while, with as many as 500 workers in the woods and hauling logs.

Many hardships hampered the railroad, with derailments, breakdowns, and especially, as you may imagine, the severe Tug Hill winters.  It was a major task to keep the tracks cleared, and in later years, hauling was suspended from January to March.  But the Gee Whiz hauled millions of board feet from The Tug.  In later years, a second railroad, called, not surprisingly, The Glenfield & Eastern, was built into the Adirondacks near Brantingham Lake, with the idea of supplying the mills during winter.

The G&W, like many companies, faltered and died during the First Great Depression of 1929, and ended in bankruptcy.  The engines, rails, and other equipment were sold and the route abandoned.  Not much remains today except for bridge abutments, gradings, a few ties, and the right-of-way, which is now used mostly by snowmobilers and hunting camps.  I rode the “railroad” a few times back in the early snowmobiling days of the ’60s and ’70s.  A group of us once ran out of fuel on the railroad, after trying to snowmobile cross-country from Rector, and spent a long evening around a bonfire while one of our group rode to Houseville for fuel.  It is remote.  Anyway, next time you ride the railroad from Page to Tabolt Corners by sled, slow down for a few moments and contemplate the history of that beautiful area, and think of The Ol’ Gee Whiz running thru the snowy night.train2

Posted by: winteridge | June 18, 2013

Sometimes…Life Sucks…


Feeling kind of blue today…just read that my ol’ Tug Hill high school bud Steve passed on. Steve was probably the closest thing to a friend I had in high school.  We both rode the bus to Lowville from The Tug, and being “outsiders” to the town kids, we stuck together.  We both enjoyed hunting, fishing, and outdoor stuff, and both were easygoing.  We drifted apart after school; I did 3 years in the army, then when I got out, he did his 3 years.  It was standard back then.  After that, though we both stayed in the area, and hunted and fished and camped on The Tug, we traveled in the same circles, but at different times, I guess.  Saw each other at a couple of class reunions and vowed to get together, but never did.

Then last fall, I saw an article in the Watertown paper about Steve and Linda’s 50th Anniversary, so I looked him up, and we talked for a while on the phone.  Seems we still had a lot in common, especially The Tug.  I had been foliage photographing just a couple miles from his camp the month before…never knew he was there.  He was not well, and I promised to visit them when I got back to Tug Hill this summer…waited too long.  I guess that is what I feel worst about.  Another on my growing pile of regrets.

Posted by: winteridge | June 12, 2013

Well, Gee Whiz


I just found and purchased on ebay a book on the history of Tug Hill’s long-forgotten railroad, the Glenfield & Western, fondly known as the ‘Ol Gee Whiz.  The G&W, though short-lived, moved most of the logs off the Tug, back in the day.  I never knew there was a book on it, so I had to have it.  Maybe the only copy.  More later, for those who are interested.

Posted by: winteridge | April 24, 2013

Another Landmark


I just read on the newsjunky that a grassfire in Town of Harrisburg destroyed the old Amby Williams homestead.  You remember…the old house with the big white silo still standing.  Someday I intend to do a story of Amby, who was a very colorful neighbor back when I was growing up.  I have a photo of his house, if I can get it to post.  Grass fire?  Ok.

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Posted by: winteridge | April 12, 2013

Where IsThe Tug?


Where IsThe Tug?

Living near a larger metropolitan area an hour or so south of Tug Hill, I am often asked such questions as “What is The Tug?” and “Where is Tug Hill?” when I mention going up there to hunt, fish, or recreate.  Maybe this will help.

Tug Hill Lake Effect Snow.

Tug Hill Lake Effect Snow.

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