Mount Haystack Trail is a 16.9 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Keene Valley, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October.
cross country skiing
A challenging hike in any season, but particularly so in winter. Haystack is the third highest peak in New York State. From the trailhead, hike along the trail that follows the north side of Johns Brook. At Bushnell Falls there are two shelters and the trail crosses to the south side of Johns Brook and continues on to Slant Rock where there is an additional shelter. This is the last shelter before the two Haystacks. The Shorey's Short Cut trail then heads steeply upward and intersects with the Range Trail. Once on the Range Trail it rises quickly and peaks just as you reach Little Haystack. From Little Haystack you can begin to see Haystack, but before the final gentle ascent to Haystack, there is a serious step down to the Haystack ridge trail. This step is about 20 feet, it very exposed, especially in winter, as the terrain drops away quickly into the valley to the east. In winter this area is very icy and requires some competence with an ice axe and crampons. After descending the step the route to the Haystack summit is clear. The return trip simply retraces the outbound route.
Long and rewarding dayhike.
Took 10 hours to complete.View from the summit worth the long hike.
Tough one. Couldn't finish it because of different factors. I should have factored in the leaves that hides the trail and the rocks. That slowed us quite a bit. Didn't think they're would be so much ice getting close to the top so I didn't have the proper equipment. And to top it all we started an hour later than we should and only had one headlight to come back.
That being said, I loved it and will do it again next Spring. This is very challenging and they're is no way I'm gonna let that mountain get the better of me. I recommend it to anyone who wants to do real Hiking.
One of the best hikes to one of the best mountains in the Daks. Awesome views of the great range, Mount Marcy, Panther Gorge, and the whole High Peaks Wilderness. Seven miles in, you reach a false summit on the Great Range trail (which is higher than the majority of the High Peaks actually) from which you can see Little Haystack and Haystack looming before you. Both are exposed and rocky so great alpine scrambles with superb views for nearly a mile.