In the frost-kissed realm of the Adirondack High Peaks,

where snowflakes dance and the north wind speaks,
Lived a hermit named Crank, with a heart so small,
Scorning the winter hiking season, Christmas and all.

Crank’s cave overlooked Marcy, with its cap of white,
And the MacIntyre range under the moon’s soft light.
“Cursed be the hikers with their festive cheer,
Invading my solitude, year after year.”

But this Christmas Eve, as the stars twinkled with glee,
Crank hatched a plan, wicked as could be.
“I’ll steal their merry, their gear, and their feasts,
We’ll see how they like these unwelcome beasts.”

Down to Marcy Dam, he slithered with spite,
Where campers slept soundly in the frosty night.
One by one, he snatched sleeping bags, boots, and sacks,
Leaving behind only footprints in the snow’s soft tracks.

But not content with just one mischievous spree,
He thought, “There’s more to be done, much more by me.”

To Lake Colden he went, under the moon’s soft glow,
Stealing boots and jackets from the slumbering folks below.
By the light of his lantern, he worked through the night,
Taking what he pleased, but keeping out of their sight.

Next to the feldspar lean-to, where hikers dreamt of High Peaks,
He stole their maps and compasses, leaving them for weeks.
“Not a trail will they find, not a path will they know,
In circles they’ll wander, in the heavy high peak’s snow.”

His heart chuckled as he imagined the morrow,
Campers waking to Christmas with sorrow.
But as he pilfered and plundered through the silent night,
A strange feeling arose, a flicker of light.

Amidst his cold caper, he paused to behold,
A family sharing a blanket, young and old.
Laughing and singing, a carol so sweet,
In the face of adversity, they wouldn’t admit defeat.

Crank’s heart, though icy, began to melt,
For a warmth like Christmas he’d never felt.
“These people, they share joy in the face of the cold,
Perhaps there’s more to Hiking and Christmas than what I’ve been told.”

With a newfound resolve, he returned every little bit,
Under the glow of the stars on a trail so brightly lit.
And as the campers awoke to Christmas Day’s light,
They found their belongings, their faces bright.

But Crank didn’t stop with just righting his wrong,
He joined the campers, Hiking along.
Sharing hot cocoa and stories so grand,
In the heart of the wilderness, hand in hand.

On Marcy’s high summit, Colden’s trap dyke,
In the MacIntyre range, he now found joy in the hike.
No longer just a hermit, hidden from sight,
But a friend of the mountains, sharing Christmas delight.

He helped a lost hiker find her way to the peak,
Shared his knowledge with campers, no longer so bleak.
And with every kind deed, Crank’s heart grew wide,
In the love of the mountains, he now took pride.

And so in the Adirondacks, where the wild rivers flow,
Lives Crank, once a hermit, in the Christmas glow.
Amongst hikers and campers, he shares his tales so grand,
A part of the wilderness, forever hand in hand.

So if you wander the High Peaks, and a friendly face you seek,
Remember old Crank, once so sullen and bleak.
In the heart of these mountains, where adventures never cease,
Crank found his Christmas spirit, in the Adirondack’s sweet peace.

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