The Crooked Canes Journal


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Two Days At Santanoni, 7/12 -7/13 ~ Jul 12, 2016

Journal entry by Day 1: Ghost Writer For Tom Gibbs; Day 2: Lynn Mayack



Day One, 7/12: The First Flight
By Ghost Writer For Sir Thomas

The thirty or so responses Sir Thomas received on his inquiry as to whether 'anyone' would be interested in a horse drawn wagon ride to Camp Santanoni, along with their boats, for a paddle on Newcomb Lake and guided tour of the great camp may have surprised him and it certainly harkens me back to a childhood poem about someone "who lived in a shoe." Planning a Canes trip to the great camp began in May when Tom learned that a horse drawn wagon is once again making a daily excursion on the five mile road to and from the famous great camp and is able to haul fourteen people along with their boats. The one planned trip became two, with Lynn graciously volunteering to lead the second day, accomodating most of those wanting to go. Still, there were lists of alternates for both days.

Upon our 9.30 arrival at the Santanoni gatehouse, we were greeted by Larry Newcombe, and his team of two work horses, their hair shining and adorned in perfectly polished harnesses. Larry, who is from Fort Ann and lives in Newcomb during the summer, has been working with horses for many years and works them on his farm when not doing trips to Santanoni. His observations of how horses learn to pull and the differences between the two horses pulling us along and comparisons to other horses he now owns or has owned in the past was very interesting. We were also fortunate to have Hannah Locke of the Camp Santanoni Staff, a very knowlegeable, personable and enthusiastic guide with us sharing her detailed knowlege of the camp, its former residents, their lifestyle and culture.

A row of boats soon formed at the wagon with Larry directing placement, applying protective blankets, Canes loading 'em on the trailer and everyone making sure they had all their gear before stashed somewhere in somebody's boat before setting off on our hour and a half scenic, and thanks to Hannah, informative trip, along the winding gravel road past historic camp buildings and over bridges, hills and dales through lovely forest to the bridge separating Newcomb Lake from Upper Duck Hole, about a third of a mile before the great camp. There, at close to noon, we unloaded the wagon, carried our boats to the nearby sandy shore putting them on the still water under crystal clear sky with nearly constant views of Panther and Santanoni Mountains. We strained to identify another conical peak with slides that looked like ski trails. Fortunately, with Peter's encyclopedic knowlege of the Adirondacks we were not long ignorant of the mountain's identity, Maru, a secret 47th high peak.

Our paddling time limited to an hour and a half, some of us chose to forgo a group lunch stop (though there were a number of VERY inviting locations) and eat in our boats while exploring the lake before our 1.30 tour of the camp with Hannah. It's hard to keep a sandwich dry when it's on the front deck while paddling away! Other than a few structures in close proximity to one another that comprise Camp Santanoni plus a couple of indistinct access points to camp sites, the shoreline is pristine and silent. Occasional birds calls (from feathered birds and "paddling birds") punctuated the silence. Inlets, a babling stream, two islands, emergent rocks and beautiful flora complete this classic Adirondack lake experience. Loon, osprey and kingfisher were among bird species spotted and getting a view of thirteen "paddling birds" who soon made their way to the shore at the great camp.

Except for two notable stragglers, both with one initial that is "K" and who almost missed the tour, everyone was on time. Boats were hauled and on the wagon as we gathered to we began Hannah's VERY informative tour of the main camp. She pointed out the dichotomy of the "upstairs / downstairs" Downton Abbey type culture prevalent at the time of the camps hayday and how buildings were designed in order to support Victorian family values and accomodate the many staff members. Completing our trip was another hour and a half wagon ride back to the beginning of the road. One tardy "K" and the rest of the name wasn't "urt" opted to walk back and her cruising at a pace faster than horses all the way was rewarded by a nice and unexpected conversation with the carpenter and his assistant who are restoring the camp and its outlying buildings. Quicker than plenty some soon enough we found ourselves back at the parking lot and in our familiar present day world wishing this day just wouldn't end.

Many thanks to Larry and Hannah for their hospitality and sharing their knowledge. To Tom and Peter, THANK YOU so much for the efforts you made to arrange and coordinate this trip!


Day Two, 7/13: The Second Flight
By Lynn

Wednesday turned out to be another sunny, warm day perfect for paddling. Fourteen Canes and twelve boats were ready to be loaded onto the trailer and wagon by 9:30 a.m. About a mile past the farm area, the intern on duty passed us on his bicycle as he had arrived too late for a wagon ride.

Larry stopped at the bridge to allow us to unload at the beach and we were ready to launch by 11:30. We set off to explore the shoreline and islands, some choosing to stop for a swim, take photographs, or eat lunch along the way. The shoreline was densely forested and you could barely tell there was a Great Camp nestled among the trees. A favorite spot was the perfect sandy beach and freshly stained bathhouse.
Working together we hauled the boats into the boathouse and up the hill to be loaded on the wagon before our tour. It was a first time visit for some and one of many for others. Even though I have been on many tours over the years, I always learn something new as information and stories are uncovered.

The day was enjoyed by all except maybe the horses who had to contend with deer flies swarming around their heads. Thanks to Joanne, Cathy, Jo Ellen, Barbara and Rich Zuccaro, Dave, Paul, Howard (first trip with the Canes), Caroline, Jim and Jan, Linda, and Ray for joining me.

Special Note: For those who were not able to make this trip with us, there is still opportunity! Contact Larry Newcombe at 518-639-5534, or Newcombe Farm on Facebook.

7/14/16 - Margie Litwin added 10 photos. 7/14/16 - Louise Rourke added 3 photos. 7/14/16 - Louise Rourke added 1 photo.

7/15/16 - Diane Wisell added 5 photos.

7/15/16 - Wanderer . added 10 photos.

7/15/16 - Barbara Zuccaro added 10 photos. 7/16/16 - RayB Bouchard added 15 photos.

7/16/16 - RayB Bouchard added 5 photos.

7/20/16 - Lynn Mayak added 1 photo.

83 photos



The bridge at Newcomb Lake. - added by Ron



The great camp from the lake. - added by Ron



The lake with the mountain in the background. - added by Ron



One of the small islands. - added by Ron



At the upper end of Lower Duckhole. - added by Ron



- added by Ron



A view of the central building of the camp. - added by Ron



A view of the porch. - added by Ron



Most of the group. - added by Ron



In the boat house. - added by Ron



Larry and his wagon. - added by Ron



On the lake. - added by Ron



A view down the lake. - added by Ron



A view from Duckhole. - added by Ron



A jigsaw puzzle of boats headed to Newcomb Lake. - added by Margie



Fran is ready to go with Margaret and others beyond. - added by Margie



Tom enjoyed a peaceful lunch at the beach area. - added by Margie



Sheep Laurel at water's edge. - added by Margie



Tom and Maryanne enjoying the surroundings. - added by Margie



The sundews with their white blooms on long thin stems. - added by Margie



Camp mascot? - added by Margie



Peace - added by Margie



A funnel spider web awaits the next meal. - added by Margie



Accessible outhouse! - added by Margie



Photo added by Louise



Photo added by Louise



Photo added by Louise



Fran heads around the island. - added by Louise



Kathy starts her paddle. - added by Diane



Sky, mountains, water, a canoe, Linda & Peter: what a perfect scene. - added by Diane



Sir Thomas surveys Newcomb Lake from the shore immediately in front of Camp Santanoni. - added by Diane



Eight hooves working hard; four feet not working at all. - added by Diane



From left to right, Fran, Margaret, Tom, Maryanne, Margie, Ron, Gail, Peter, Kathy, Louise, Linda, Kurt, Diane and in the driver's seat, Larry. Photo by Hannah Locke, Santanoni Staff. Thanks Hannah! NOTE: A link to a larger, clearer image is included at the very bottom of the page. - added by Diane



View from the driver's seat on the way in to Newcomb Lake - added by Wanderer



Hannah talking to the group about the history of the Preserve - added by Wanderer



Gail floating in front of the Artist's Cabin with Margie exploring closer to shore - added by Wanderer



Kurt playing peekaboo - added by Wanderer



Lonely evergreen with Santanoni and Panther Mts. on the horizon - added by Wanderer



Diane enjoying the day - added by Wanderer



Margaret Whitford on her first Cane's outing under the bridge connecting Upper Duck Hole and Newcomb Lake - added by Wanderer



Louise and Gail - added by Wanderer



Maryanne and Tom in front of the fireplace in the Main Lodge - one of many fireplaces throughout the complex - added by Wanderer



Unique looking cedar tree root system found near the boat house. The shoreline of Newcomb and Duck Hole contained a rather large concentration of cedar trees compared with some of the other lakes we have paddled - added by Wanderer



Day 2 Howard Kayaking while using his cell phone - added by Barbara



Day 2 Paul - added by Barbara



Day 2 Linda - added by Barbara



Day 2 Jan & Jim - added by Barbara



Day 2 David & Lynn - added by Barbara



Day 2 Carolyn - added by Barbara



Day 2 Joanne - added by Barbara



Day 2 Bathing Beauties! Joanne, Lynn, Jo Ellen, Carolyn, Cathy & Barbara - added by Barbara



Day 2 Ray - added by Barbara



Day 2 Rich - added by Barbara



Hmmmm, Isn't it a little early to be hitting the bottle Carolyn? To which she replied... - added by RayB



...O come on Ray. I only had a little nip ;-) . Ps...I just made it all up, but it seemed to fit the pictures very nicely. - added by RayB



Linda cruising along. - added by RayB



Barbara taking a break while she waits for... - added by RayB



...her husband, Rich. - added by RayB



Linda, the organizer of Day 2, paddling with her husband, Dave. Thank you Linda for making this day possible.- added by RayB



Jan & Jim cruising past Kathy in their tandem kayak. - added by RayB



There's Joanne in her classic kayaking position just enjoying life. - added by RayB



Common Pipewort, which also goes by the name Hatpins. - added by RayB



A closer look at the flower head helps to explain how it came by the second name. - added by RayB



A Common Arrowhead plant in bloom. Another name for it is Duck Potatoes because ducks like to eat the starchy tubers down in the muck. It's also reported that American Indians use to rob the tubers stored in Muskrat dens, but there wasn't any mention of whether or not the Muskrats made it through the winter after their larder was depleted. - added by RayB



A Yellow Water Lily with a pair of Damselflies perched on it. In spite of what it looks like, they aren't mating. The bright blue male grabs the female behind her head and holds on to her for hours in a pre-mating ritual. If she is receptive to his overtures then she will reach up and connect the end of her body with his in order to mate. The pair will have the appearance of a flattened circle at this point. - added by RayB



Believe it or not this is a Benchmark embedded in a water covered rock in front of the main building. The gentle waves made it difficult to to take a picture that was in focus. - added by RayB



A view of the Artist's Studio from the lake. - added by RayB



We are reluctantly heading back to our cars after a very enjoyable day. Fortunately we were able to ride in comfort, while the family in front of us had to "Hoof It" back. - added by RayB



The team of horses that brought us here having a well deserved rest. - added by RayB



Buttercups - added by RayB



Shinleaf, a member of the Pyrola family. - added by RayB



Orange Hawkweed - added by RayB



A cluster of Oxeye Daisies, or just plain Daisies if you prefer. - added by RayB



Fourteen Crooked Canes on Day Two's adventure, about ready to leave Camp Santononi. NOTE: A link to a larger, clearer image is included at the very bottom of the page. - added by Lynn



Almost ready to go. - added by Lynn



Learning a little about life at Camp Santanoni. - added by Lynn



Are there still twelve boats back there? - added by Lynn



Jim wonders if we are going the right way. - added by Lynn



Larry alternates his teams of horses to allow them to rest on their off days. - added by Lynn



Ready to launch at Duck Hole. - added by Lynn



Barb and Rich - added by Lynn



Almost home. - added by Lynn



Not taking any chances at being left behind, Ray is well-prepared and self sufficient as usual. - added by Lynn




Click HERE to see larger group photos from both of this weeks outings to Camp Santanoni.

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