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First Day Hike in Allegany County draws dozens to Phillip’s Creek


See the GALLERY of the January 1 hike

From Friends Improving Allegany County Trails Inc,

A cold, overcast winter day and muddy trails did not discourage 81 hikers from participating in the “First Day Hike” organized by IMPACT: Friends Improving Allegany County Trails, Inc. held on New Year’s Day at Phillip’s Creek State Forest. The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Ranger Justin Thaine and Holly Shulman, IMPACT Board member led the longer hike, with Pauline Burnes, VP of IMPACT leading a shorter 2 mile hike on Trail 2.

Justin Thaine, Pauline Burnes and Holly Shulman get ready to lead hikers down the trail at Phillip’s Creek State Forest. Photo Credit Gail Richardson.

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) donated 4 Empire Park Passes to lucky winners, and bandanas with the reminder that 2024 is OPRHP’s centennial celebration year! Ear warmer headbands were donated by NYSDEC. Other IMPACT members that helped make this a very successful event include Nicole Munkwitz, Ed Schultz, Gail Richardson, and Brian Burnes.

Hikers had the opportunity to investigate the new timber bridge constructed on Trail 2 by Alfred State College Building Trades students. Funding for materials was supplied through a grant from Parks & Trails New York with generous donations from the Allegany Area Foundation, Saputo Dairy, and the Arkport Branch of Community Bank, N.A.  

Photo Credit Gail Richardson.

If there is enough snow this winter, IMPACT will be grooming the trails at Phillip’s Creek and Turnpike State Forest for Cross Country skiing. For more information regarding upcoming events on the trails in Allegany County, go to the website or Facebook page for IMPACT: Friends Improving Allegany County Trails, Inc. or visit their website

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