I had actually planned to hike Bald Mountain today, but a lack of sleep and a late rise left me with fewer options. I had given thought of doing absolutely nothing today, as it was about 10:30 before I even got dressed.
Poke-O-Moonshine is a nearby hike for me, about 20 miles south of Plattsburgh. I have hike this mountain many times from the original trail off the former campground. While that is a direct route, it is a somewhat steep climb right off the start. In 2008 DEC created a new trail to the summit, which is not as steep but is a longer hike at 2.4 mile one way. I opted for this route as I had not climbed Poko in that direction. It is a pleasant hike with gradual terrain. Most of this route is an old jeep trail, so that in and of itself should tell you that it is not overly steep.
I had Dingo and Misty with me today on this hike. We arrived at the trail-head without another vehicle in site. I was excited about this because I like to allow the dogs to run free as long as we are alone. We would not see another hiker until just above the former cabin foundation. There was a very pleasant couple that had hiked up the original trail, and were on there way back down.
From the trail-head to the summit it took me about an hour and a half. I, as always take my time going up, enjoying the hike and taking many pictures along the way. This new route offered a variety of views from bogs to open ledges that provided a nice panoramic view. I bet this route would be a blast to snowshoe in the winter.