Queens County High Point Trip Report

one area near the Glen Oaks Golf Club (260+ ft)

Date: May 4, 2002
Author: Michael Schwartz

This approach is based on a Richmond-Kings-New York-Bronx-Queens circuit. From the Bronx highpoint, retrace the route back to Broadway, at which point you jog left, then right, on West 230th Street. Go one block and take the Major Deegan Expressway/I-87 south to I-95 north, signed for New Haven. Take I-95, the infamous Cross Bronx Expressway, east and eventually take the I-295 exit for the Throgs Neck Bridge ($3.50). At the first exit at the south end of the bridge, exit onto the Cross Island Parkway southbound. Take the Cross Island south to the Grand Central Parkway eastbound. You'll only be on the Grand Central a short distance to the first exit, #24-Little Neck Parkway. At the bottom of the ramp, cross Little Neck Parkway at the traffic light, continuing on the Grand Central Parkway service road. This climbs to a crest, essentially at the highpoint, then descends. A few hundred feet past the crest is the delivery entrance to the North Shore Towers apartment building and Glen Oaks Golf Course.

On my first trip here in 2000, the guard allowed me to park inside the fence and walk uphill at the edge of the golf course to the 17th tee, clearly the highest point, and clearly manmade. Between the tee and the fence at the service road sidewalk is USGS BM Payne 2, placed in a square concrete base, flush with the ground. The USGS data sheet describes Payne 2 as "...located on the top of knoll....." and when it was placed in 1932 it probably was at the natural Queens highpoint. Since then, as further noted on the data sheet, "Considerable changes have taken place in the contour of the premises since the station was established."

It was the consensus of our party that the elevation at the service road sidewalk, perhaps 50 feet from the benchmark, is virtually the same as that of the benchmark. Our attempt to gain access to the golf course was rebuffed by security guards. We observed that at the main entrance to the complex, car trunks were being searched. Thus is life in NYC post-9/11. We were told to contact the General Manager of the North Shore Towers at 718-423-3335 to inquire about access. To reach the sidewalk near the BM, as you ascend the service road from Little Neck Parkway, turn right onto 267th Street and park around the corner on 69th Avenue. Walk to the crest on the service road and look through the fence toward the elevated 17th tee. The BM is on the flat ground between the fence and the tee.