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June 13, 2014

Mountain renamed to honor hiker

NORTH HUDSON — A historic name change Thursday established an Adirondack mountain named Grace Peak.

The former East Dix Mountain was officially renamed Thursday in honor of Adirondack 46er No. 9, Grace Dolbeck Leach Hudowalski, a founding member of the 46ers.

Hudowalski was born in Ticonderoga in 1906 and died in 2004.

The move to rename East Dix was organized by the Forty-Sixers, a hiking club whose members each summit all 46 Adirondack Peaks.

Final approval came from the U.S. Board on Geographic Names after numerous hiking club, town and county boards petitioned for the moniker change to Grace Peak.

The mountain next to Dix Mountain was named East Dix without distinction simply due to its location.

But the peak is visible from the windows of Hudowalski’s former home. It reaches 4,025 feet toward the sky.

John VanNorden, chairman of the 46er Conservation Trust, was like a son to Hudowalski, who died in 2004.

“I’m elated, so elated,” VanNorden said on Thursday. “It’s a huge moment in New York state history.

“I’m going to climb the mountain next weekend. I’m sure I will be in tears the whole way up. This is a great day for Adirondack Park.”

The trailheads for the mountains are on Route 9 in North Hudson.

Grace Peak is now the second Adirondack High Peak named after a woman, the other being Esther Mountain, which is just beside Whiteface in Wilmington, also in Essex County.

The Adirondack 46ers had filed for the name change back in 2003.

 Email Kim Smith Dedam:kdedam@pressrepublican.comTwitter: @KimDedam

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