Big Slide Yard Mountain Loop Trail is a 9.9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Keene Valley, NY that features a river and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from June until March.
Big Slide can be done as an out & back (via The Brothers) accessed by John's Brook in Keane Valley or can be done as a loop (which is longer). From the parking lot you will start climbing immediately up a steady course to an attractive brook crossing. Past this point you will climb steeply to the amazing views from the 1st Brother. After a short descent you will climb steeply again up the slopes of the 2nd Brother and gain even more amazing views. Past the 2nd Brother you will drop into an open valley and start a much longer and steadier climb to the mostly wooded summit of the 3rd Brother. After another descent you will climb much more moderately to the second route, outlined below. From this intersection the trail becomes its steepest as you make the final push to the summit, where some of the best views in the NE can be awarded. (The trail continues over the top to Yard Mt. and another possible loop that includes Johns Brook Lodge.) For the most common loop, return to the base of the steep climbing and continue straight on a trail that eventually crosses Slide Mt. Brook several times before reaching the Johns Brook Trail. Turn left, and then left again at the trail register. After a brief climb from the register, the trail is mostly down to the Garden parking area. This return is 1.5 miles longer than returning over the Brothers.
If you start to follow the trail along first and second Brother, end with Big Slid. You will ascend with Great Range along with you and Mt. Marcy lies on the west. This 3.7 mile ascending trail is steep. The 1.4 mile from Big Slid to Yard transaction is very mild and smooth. The return trail is steep but short between Yard and Johns Brook Lodge. The last 3.8 miles to Garden is in the valley. It is pleasant walk in the woods.
Did this loop in the fall, so was extra rewarded by views of the beautiful changing leaves.
Big Slide via The Brothers was a great hike with panoramic views from Brothers 1&2, and the summit of Big Slide. Moderate hike with some tough spots. Hiked The Brothers/Big Slide loop in 9 hours (with multiple breaks at the summits). Hit the trail head at 6AM and caught the sunrise at the summit of the first Brother. Definitely recommended.
I found this hike to be very enjoyable. I would recommend it for most moderate to experienced hikers. It doesn't seem that difficult due to the fact you're constantly admiring the views on the way up. The trail has a lot to offer including many different points of scenery. There are 2 or 3 360 views on smaller brother peaks you will pass on your way up and a few ascending rocky cliffs you will pass that boast great views mid way up. The final few hundred feet is a bit steep but once you're up the summit has a 180 view of the higher peaks and is very rewarding.
There's 2 slightly longer trails to take going back down if you want and one of them contains a long mossy stream you'll follow. The last 2 or 3 miles is a straightaway and is a good way to finish the trip without too much effort. It will probably take about 6 hours to complete at a normal pace with some stops. Whichever path you take, it will be rewarding.
Definitely hard... might not be as tall as Marcy, but it gains a lot of elevation quick & really works your lungs. Good bit of steep, flat rock face that helps if you really lean into the mountain for & the ladder near the summit is surprisingly sturdy and safe. That view makes it all so worth it, though!
This was a fun hike to do. The views while hiking were nice. There's a lot of slide walking with a little scrambling here and there but it was manageable. The views from the summit was very nice looking at the Great Range. I opted and did a loop going down the side trail to the John Brooks trail which was like walking in a park. The only issue is I arrived at the Garden Trailhead around 6 and I took the last parking spot and it was already crowded.
Amazing views on the way up. Well worth the effort. Challenging on the way down too.
big slide via 3 brothers was an amazing day hike. very difficult but worth it when you get to each of the 4 summits. many types of paths included in this route. steep rocks, cool and hidden by the trees, and narrow inclines surround by bushes are all there for you. having 4 summits served as a great checkpoint system to monitor your time.
chances are you won't get parking at the garden parking lot but the shuttle from the airfield down the road runs every 20 minutes which is worth it.
Big Slide via the brothers is a real treat great views all around and challenging hiking and scrambling. A great day trip would be to hike up to Big Slide via The Brothers and down to Johns Brook Lodge for lunch. Hike out along the old trail past the ranger cabin instead of along the green tunnel that is the standard approach from the Garden to JBL. It parallels Johns Brook for much of the way and eventually crosses over to the Garden. Bring some beer and chill them in the creek. Enjoy lunch and brews on the deck at JBL.
As my first high peak, it was a challenge. Pack plenty of water. We ran out on the back side of Yard and there weren't a lot of sources.
Brothers one and two are awesome and have great scrambles. The third brother was not as much fun. Great loop hike as we took the red marked trail down to the Phelps trail and back to the Garden. Many brook crossings on this route down. Just beautiful. And we actually were able to get a park at the Garden so score.
This was an incredible hike. The views from the Brothers and at the top of Big Slide are incredible.
My only recommendation is to do the hike in reverse order. Start the hike going by over the Brothers and the other way on the way down. The path on the way down is not as steep (albeit a little longer) and you walk along a beautiful downhill stream for a couple miles.
Amazing views from the top of the Brothers over to Big Slide and on top of Big Slide.The Brothers were challenging in spots due to the rock climbing. Did the loop to Yard Mountain then down to Johns Brook to the Gardens parking lot. It was about 13 miles total and Yard Mountain's trails are very narrow and the views from Yard are slim to none. Great hike overall.
Fantastic views. Went from Garden lot up and back, 7.7 miles round trip. 3 hours to summit with a kid. Challenging hike, pack your lunch. Worth it for the views, a must do.
Really great hike! The rock scrambles were a little bit more difficult with two dogs, but still doable.
Love this trail! Virtually nonstop views climbing big slide via the brothers. Brothers is a series of steps as you ascend with awesome views of the great range. I took the trail down the south side to Johns Brook trail to loop back to the garden trailhead. Expect to be hurting a bit by the end but it's a good hurt!
Great views all the way up to the top . There are many spots to take in views of the other high peaks .