Weekend Ramble Events: September 18th & 19th, 2010 Minnewaska State Park Preserve: September 18th at 9 AM Ever wanted to join the Early Morning Birders at Minnewaska but just couldn't get out of bed quick enough? Scott Baldinger, local naturalist and frequent birder, will lead this program designed for late-riser birding enthusiasts and those just looking to learn the basics. This program includes a three-mile walk on the trails around Lake Minnewaska, and will include a stunning vista featuring the Catskill Mountain Range. Participants should come prepared with binoculars and a field guide and bring water and any snacks they may need. To register, please call (845) 255-0752. Ghost Town Hiking Tour: September 18th at 10:30 AM With photos and maps in hand, tour the "ghost town" Doodletown, with Friends of Doodletown Chairperson, and local expert Mark Jelley. See the cemeteries, side walks, walls, and foundations, with photos to show how they once appeared in the "disappeared hamlet" that was lived continuously for at least 200 years. Plus, explore its secret places such as the Doodletown Mine, Edison Mine, ancient Indian rock shelter and the tree nursery. Lunch is at a secluded waterfall. The hike rambles along old roads and paths, past pretty streams, through beautiful woods and rolling hills. Photos and maps will be distributed. Tour fee: $5.00. and $8 Parking fee. Bring lunch, water, hiking boots recommended. Not suitable for children under 13. Please call (914) 261-0987 to register. Twin Forts Hike: September 18th at 10 AM Hike into history following the 1777 British route of attack on Revolutionary War Forts Clinton and Montgomery! Beginning at 10:00 a.m. in front of the Bear Mountain Inn, you will discover how the battle for the Twin Forts unfolded by taking a docent-led tour of Fort Clinton, including stops at the stone wall, the Outer Redoubt, and the unique Trailside History museum, home to a superb archaeological collection from the Twin Forts. Then, march across the pedestrian suspension bridge and be greeted by costumed interpreters for a 12:00 Noon tour of Fort Montgomery. Tour will end with a 1:00 PM Cannon and Musket Firing Demonstration. Visitors free to partake in one or both legs of the tour. 4 mi. total, moderate/difficult (Fort Clinton walk easy. 1.5 mi.; Fort Montgomery Hike moderate, 2.5 miles, including walk back to Inn; hiking boots recommended; not suited for children under 12). Meet costumed guide at Bear Mountain Inn parking lot at 10:00 a.m. or meet guide at 12:00 Noon (for Fort Montgomery Tour only - parking at Fort Montgomery Visitor Center lot) Bring Lunch and Drink. Parking at Bear Mountain State Park: $8 per car. Please register by calling (845) 446-2134. Sterling Forest Fire Tower: September 18th at NOON Join Environmental Educator Doc Bayne on a woods road hike up to one of the last operational fire towers in New York State. The trail passes the historic ruins of an iron mining venture that operated for almost 200 years (1736-1923), then climb to an elevation of 1200 feet and the 60-foot steel tower. The fire tower was built in 1922 by the New York State Departmentof Conservation and the tower is still used today to locate fires in Sterling Forest and Harriman State Park. Weather permitting, you can climb to the top of the tower and be rewarded with 70 to 80-mile vista. This four mile hike is moderately difficult. Please call: 845 351-5907 to register. Washington's Headquarters Ramble: September 19th at 1 PM and 3 PM What must it have been like for Hudson Valley resident Tryntje Hasbrouck to move out of her home, making way for her tenants George and Martha Washington? Find out when you visit Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site, Sunday, September 19th for a First Person Experiential Tour conducted by Mrs. Hasbrouck. Reserved tour times are 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM. During the last year of the Revolutionary War, General Washington sought a house that would serve as a headquarters for him. He also wanted to be in close proximity to the British camp in New York City. Tryntje Hasbrouck's farm in Newburgh was chosen. This proved to be a good decision since his troops were eventually billeted in nearby New Windsor. Even though Mrs. Hasbrouck was a patriotic woman, it was still a major upheaval in her life to move her family and their belongings to a different domicile in New Windsor. Mrs. Hasbrouck rose to the occasion, yet she still wished to keep a watchful eye on her holdings. She did this with visits to her farm house, walking through the rooms of her home. Join her as she checks up on how things are being maintained. Along the way, she might even share some insights into what she knows about the Washingtons. All of this can add up to a most enjoyable, and certainly memorable tour.