During the last ice age of 10,000 to 12,000 years ago, receding glaciers left behind many gigantic “erratics” throughout the Catskills. Erratics can be defined as “a piece of rock that differs from the size and type of rock native to the area in which it rests.” Many examples of these rocks and boulders as well as other interesting rock formations can be found around South Mountain and the North-South Lake area. As per 19th century fashion, many of the more noteworthy erratics and formations were named, both as a means of identification but also to promote tourism. Locations such as Druid Rocks, Pudding-Stone Hall, Lemon Squeezer, Elfin Pass, Fairy Spring, Star Rock, Boulder Rock, and The Sphinx enthralled visitors as they hiked through the woods in and around the famed Catskill Mountain House. Many of these funky rocks are still popular hiking destinations today.
The glacial erratic seen here was perhaps the most popular and widely known, and has gone by a number of names through the years, depending on the era and which of the great hotels you were staying at.
Although history is clear as to which name became the most commonly used, I thought it would be interesting to see what the Catskills community thinks today.
Does this glacial erratic look more like Shark’s jaws, a Whale’s mouth or an Alligator? Please respond with your thoughts by adding a comment.
The Shark's Jaws