Walk Through Mud

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brand new hiking boot stuck deep in mud

My brand new Vasque’s being used correctly. A muddy boot is a good boot. Always walk directly through mud so as not to widen the trail or trample the plants along its edge.

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Spring is mud season, sure, but mud season also happens every time it rains.

Here are three great reasons to always walk directly down the middle of every trail — especially through puddles and pools:

  1. Staying in the center of the trail avoids trampling plants on either side of the trail — some plants are exceptionally slow-growing, so walking down the center of a trail is an act of environmental conservation;
  2. It prevents the widening of trails — which happens super quickly;
  3. Muddy boots are a badge of honor!

Some trails are more prone to getting waterlogged than others. Kaaterskill High Peak is famous for its mud. Up high, West Kill, Hunter and Sugarloaf all have a lot of squelch.

boggy trail
Boggy section on Hunter

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rotting trees
Boggy woods on Sugarloaf

And the trail from Route 23 toward Windham High Peak is another spot where a really beautiful route is beginning to widen in several places because people can’t handle a little ick.

As the folks at @nysdec say, “Walk through, not around, mud and water on trails to avoid trampling vegetation and widening trails.”⁣

It’s also fun!

Stick it to the scolds: return home muddy.

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