Phelps Mountain Trail is a 8.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lake Placid, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
This is a very short climb from Adirondack Loj to the top of this 46er which as wonderful views from summit ledges. This is an easy climb from Adirondack Loj to the top of Phelps at 4,160 feet. Although the summit is wooded there are spectacular views spanning from the Great Range all the way to Algonquin with the state high point, Mt. Marcy framed in the center. You'll want to take some time at the top for photos. This is one of th easier climbs in the high peaks so feel free to bring family.
Awesome hike ! certainly a bit longer than marked at the junctions . we ended up finishing at about 10 miles. The first few miles are very easy after you pass Marcy dam it gets very steep, microspikes are a must in the winter due to ice. Awesome views on the top
Completed Phelps Mountain on Sunday 1/15/2017. A very simple first 2 miles to Marcy Dam starts your trip. There are lean-to's there which are great for a quick break before getting into the serious part of the hike. Nice views as well. Then another easy mile to the Phelps DEC trail marker. The last 1 mile to the summit was somewhat steep but nothing too serious. Then it happened... A steep ice slide that immediately startled me. Seeing steep ice never gets easier for me, haha! Got up and past it with no incident but couldn't help but think how I would get back down it. Continued up the trail to find two more icy patches that required respect. I've heard others say the last mile is more like 1.2 or 1.5 miles but i'll take the DEC's word on the 1 mile. It was a tough mile for me. I wont elaborate on the time out of pure embarassment, lol. Made it to the summit and hung around for about ten minutes. Full panoramic views of the Great Range and many others. The entire walk up is very enclosed and offers no views so the payoff is nice. Used Grivel g12 crampons for almost the entire trip. They were much appreciated on the steep icy slides. 99% of others I saw were wearing Kahtoolah (however you spell that) microspikes or MSR Evo 22's. I personally would never wear snowshoes for these types of hikes anymore. They will work but they are kinda sketchy, even with a MSR Lighting Ascent which have an aggressive crampon. Microspikes seemed to be sufficient for most. I like the security on the ice. It's only your life right? The trail is heavily populated. You will meet many many friendly people who like to chit chat. A super easy first 3.2 miles, 1 tough mile. 8.4 miles roundtrip. More than suitable for beginner hikers with proper gear and respect. Enjoy. :)
Microspikes were a god-send.
Hiked the Van Hoevenburg trail in December after a recent snow fall. the trail to Marcy Dam was great, very scenic and enjoyed the view of Algonquin.. Phelps on the other hand was long, steep and went on for ever. listed at 1.0 miles on the DEC trailmarker, but hardly a mile..more like 1.5 miles. Its not marked, the open rocky southern face is the summit. Great views of Tabletop and Marcy. Named for Old Man Phelp's love of Mercy Mountain.. fits the namesake well. Bring plenty of water, food and patience if you wish to snowshoe. and a ice axe and crampons as well. enjoy.
Struck me how warm it was for late November on an Adirondack high peak. No ice. All mud.
Three of us in our twenties did this hike on Tuesday morning. The first few miles started out mostly just walking through the forest which is was quite easy however as we started to climb the running water turned to ice which was big challenge without spikes. The last mile before the summit is where the trail gets challenging which makes the distance seem much longer. Would recommend the trail this time of year but next time we would definitely bring spikes along!
The sign shows 1.2 miles to the summit but we felt that we hiked a lot more
This trail was similar to Table Top. If you are trying to do all the high peaks, this you should do P and TT together.
This is a short and steep trail. The payoff at the end is the view that the summit has. The trail was pretty busy today and there was a nice breeze at the summit. The only negative thing I would say is that the 1.2 mile hike to the summit seems like it takes forever. I hiked this one after I hiked Tabletop Mountain.
If you are low on water during summer, filter from the the Marcy trail stream before you get on the Phelps trail. There are no running streams on the Phelps trail. On our trip we were socked in with clouds, so no views. Going to do it again in August with my family, hopefully the weather will cooperate.