Diamond Notch Leanto Rehabilitation - June 26 & 27, 2010, Catskill Mountains, NY

In conjunction with the State Department of Environmental Conservation, the NYNJ Trail Conference and the Catskill 3500 Club, the floor and the roof of the of the Diamond Notch Leanto were replaced and rehabilitated to extend the life of the leanto.  By the time the volunteers were done there was a new roof, a new floor, the privy was moved to a location and the entire leanto was given a fresh coat of stain and weatherproofing.

The leanto is located about a mile and a half from the end of Spruceton Road in Spruceton Valley.  The walk is generally easy and follows an old road the entire way.  The first mile from the parking area to Diamond Notch Falls and the intersection with the Westkill and Hunter Mountain Trails is almost level.  The last half mile from the trail junctions up to the leanto gets a bit steeper, but nothing very difficult.

All of the materials and tools for the work were brought in by hand and soon after arriving on Saturday morning, the volunteers starting removing the old asphalt shingle roof.  These shingles were collected and backpacked out over the next two days.  The removal of the old roof went by at light speed as a number of volunteers were working to remove them at the same time.

After removing the old roof and collecting the shingles, the new, cedar shingles were installed on the roof.  The shingles went up quickly on both sides of the leanto, though the peak of the roof was left to finish on Sunday so that a different group of volunteers would also have the chance to work on the roof.

As the roof was being worked on, other volunteers were working on digging a new hole to move the privy to.  They decided on digging out an older hole where the privy used to be located since we knew the digging would be easier.  While the waste had long ago composted itself into some really rich dirt, the old outhouse hole was filled with its share of trash that had to be dug out and then carried out.

Also, while the roof and the privy were being worked on, a new floor was going in over the old floor in the leanto.

By the end of the first day, a lot of the work had already been done.

On the second day, the volunteers came back up to the leanto to finish off the roof, paint the leanto and to clean up the site.  One group of volunteers made 3 trips back and forth packing out all of the shingles and trash from the leanto site.

A full set of the photos from the two days of work is available on Flickr.

For More Information on Catskills Hiking and Outdoors

Check out our Catskill Mountain Information Page for hikes, advice and planning information.  Need a hiking map for the Catskills?  The Trail Conference publishes the Catskills Trails Map Set, which is the best set of maps available for hiking in the Catskills. How about a guidebook?  Both AMC and ADK publish Trail Guides to the Catskill Region

Guide to Catskill Trails (Forest Preserve, #8) (The Forest Preserve Series)AMC Catskill Mountain Guide, 2nd: AMC's Comprehensive Guide to Hiking Trails in the Catskills (Appalachian Mountain Club)Catskill Trails


  1. Thanks to all the volunteers. We hike past this lean-to on a regular basis from our home on the Diamond Notch Rd. (Lanesville) approach to Diamond Notch. The lean-to and site looks great!


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