14-Aug-2006 -- This is the nearest confluence to the place where I grew up. It is about 20 miles east-northeast of the tiny hamlet of Krumville, New York (located at approximately 41°53'N 74°14'W). I was born in Ridgewood, New Jersey (a few miles from 41N74W) and moved to Krumville when I was about two years old. With its rural setting and scenic mountain views, Krumville is an idyllic place, but its character has changed in recent years as many properties were sold to developers and people from New York City who wanted a place in the country.
As was the case with my visits to other confluences in New York State, I coordinated this visit with a trip to upstate NY to see my relatives. After driving from Maryland and staying overnight in Ellenville, NY, I continued northeast on US Route 209 towards Kingston. The confluence is just 300 meters east of the New York State Thruway (I-87), but trying to access it directly from the Thruway is impractical. There are three ways to approach the confluence from the south; the simplest approach is to take US Route 9W north for less than a mile, then turn left on Leggs Mill Rd. After 1/4 mile, there is a three-way intersection where Leggs Mill Rd. branches to the right. The road then crosses the Esopus Creek, and shortly thereafter, there is a meadow on the right; the confluence is located in this meadow, about 60 meters away at the closest approach. If you come to a triangular intersection, you have gone too far.
I parked on the shoulder and surveyed the meadow, looking for the path of least resistance. There really wasn't such a thing here, since the density of vegetation in the meadow was pretty much the same everywhere. Getting into the meadow wasn't a problem; although there was a barb wire fence, it was broken or missing in many places. Once I reached the tall vegetation, though, the remaining distance to the confluence was tougher than it looked.
Some time ago, this field was probably used for growing corn; that is evident in the pictures from previous visits, as well as the presence of parallel ridges and ruts in the ground. For whatever reason, the field was abandoned and a well-established meadow ecosystem has developed. The primary vegetation at this time of year is purple loosestrife, along with goldenrod, Queen Anne's lace, milkweed and various grasses. I also saw several monarch butterflies, as well as a few other butterflies that I couldn't identify. There were some unwelcome residents, too, including horse flies nearly an inch long.
I made my way through the vegetation, which in some places was several feet tall, and arrived at the confluence. After getting the "all zeroes" GPS shot and several pictures of the beautiful meadow, I headed back to my car to resume the 3-hour drive upstate to my mother's house in Oxford.