Explore ADK 46s - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

ADK 46s Map

Started 9am at trailhead and it was -4 degrees, about 15 when we returned. Trail was packed down really well but still wore snow shoes all they way until reaching summit where we switched to crampons. Summit of cascade was very windy with strong gusts but clear blue skies and sunny. Couldn’t be up there longer than 5 min with wind chill. Headed to porter where the views were just as spectacular with heavy snow on trees. Less wind on porter. Used snow shoes all the way down back to trailhead by 3pm. Winter hiking a LOT more physical than expected but well worth the experience and views.

Good winter hiking as heavily travelled, did hike in crampons.
Nice view from the top!

Went 12/21/2017. Couldn't ask for a better first winter hike.

Sunny, 0° at the trailhead. Snow was too packed to use snowshoes. Summit was icy, didn't have microspikes but we did ok taking our time and jamming our trekking poles in the rock gaps. Summit was also crazy windy, about -15° (got a headache in the side of my face from the cold) but worth it for the 360° views you get at the top.

Did both Cascade & Porter in about 6 hours total, all 3 of us are in decent shape in our early 20s. Great views, rewarding hike, ate our fill in Placid afterwards.

This is a great day hike! I hiked both peaks 2/17, and the conditions were perfect. The snow was packed well enough to both peaks that I only used micro spikes. As others have said it's gusty at the top so bring an extra layer if you want to spend time up there! If I were to change anything, I would have brought trekking poles. Some sections of the descent were a bit hairy, and I fell on my butt a few times. I also would have gotten there sooner. I checked in at 3:05 PM. Knowing that I was battling daylight, I ran a good bit of the trail when it was level. Total time was 2 hr 24 min with about 10 minutes at the top of each peak. If you want a more comfortable pace, plan on 3.5-4 hrs. My GPS counted it at 5.9 miles round trip.

Girlfriend (23) and I (22) are in decent cardio shape but don't get to do many big hikes often. Took us 3h40m of moving time going at a very leisurely pace up and a brisk walk down. 4.5 miles total. We went in mid February so there was a good amount of snow and the entire trail was covered with ice, less so at the summit.

Parking is a little confusing as it's right along the road. There are spaces off to the side though. I think we saw 3 little parking areas. The start to the trail can be missed but it's at the middle space and there are signs once you start. The trail is nicely marked the entire way.
This hike gets steep at some points but doesn't throw anything too crazy at ya. Balanced by flatter areas give you nice breaks. Pack water and some snacks as always.

We were bold and did not use any spikes--just regular hiking boots. Spikes definitely would have helped but going slow and using some sweet maneuvers there was enough space to sneak around the tricky parts and make it all the way up.

The wind was brutal at the top, had to hunker down so I wouldn't blow away. Under armour, t-shirt, and a wind breaker was fine for top. Wore shorts under insulated pants for bottoms. Hat and gloves are a must if you want to reach the peak. It was right around 30°F the entire day and we were lucky enough for the clouds to break and get some nice sun about half way through.

We decided not to hit Porters, which adds another .7 miles out then another back. You get there towards the top of Cascade trail.

All around a great day!

Loved this hike! Went at the end of January , high 30’s and it was perfect. I used my spikes and my boyfriend used snowshoes. The view from the top was beautiful along with some great views as you are reaching the summit. The first three miles is an easy walk but the last mile is fairly challenging. Really enjoyed this hike, my only suggestion is leave early so you can hit tabletop too!

We did it! Drove to cascade mountain from montreal with kids. 8 kids in total from 5 to 12 years old. It took about 3 hours to go up because we snacked a lot.

It's middle of February and the temperature was mild. We shed our layers just up to the junction but after that, it just got very very cold in the summit.

Microspikes were very helpful.

I brought 2L of water with hydration pack and drank it all.

A lot very steep ascend but doable. Just pace yourself, hydrate and snacka lot.

went with 17 and 12 yr old son and my 8 month old fox hound mix. Moderate hike....boys had no problem and dog made it even more fun. No problem hiking even at 8 month. views on top were even better than Mt Marcy and weather was perfect. Park in small lot at base of trail and head in Wonderful day with my boys!

Great hike, even in negative temps on a windy day! Great views from the top of Cascade!

Brutal winter hike if you go take alltrail's suggestion and do Nippletop first, but i imagine its a matter of preference if you want to get most of the climbing done asap. Trail from Elk Pass up to Nippletop is mostly ice. You will need decent spikes for this. Regular microspikes wont cut it as the couple a few dozen feet behind me found out (they had to quit halfway up because they couldnt make it up a particularly icy spot and i didnt have rope to help them). Also make sure to wear snowshoes since whatever isnt ice is 3-4 feet of fluffy snow, and if you stray 3 inches off the narrow packed down trail you will immediately posthole up to your waist. Once you get to Nippletop Summit the views are amazing and definitely worth the strenuous climb. The trail to Dial and over Bear Den is pretty easy from here (but keep your snowshoes on), with a little more climbing up to Noonmarks shoulder. There are also plenty of spots steep enough on the descent that you can literally sit down and butt slide 20-100 feet at a time to save energy (just use an ice axe or trekking poles to steer and stop) and have some fun. The only downside to this hike is the long approach up the access road you have to walk, but otherwise the views and the trail are 10/10

My fifth time doing this pair of mountains. First time in winter. The trail as of today is basically an ice waterfall up to cascade. The open summit was very windy (I would guess 50+mph winds. Beautiful 360 degree views from cascade summit. My micro spikes broke on the way down which led to a few falls but no serious injury. I ended up climbing down the right side of the trail which was just pure snow and made it much easier with my broken spikes. The easy trail over to porter was less icy and more snow. Overall it’s a great hike if you are prepared for the conditions!

This was my third time doing Tabletop. It was a nice hike in the winter with the packed snow

1 month ago

Not going to lie, I “Phelps” this one! I went on a relatively mild winter day. Temp was high 30s. Snowshoes were required since there was 8 in (or more) of snow on the ground. Although, I saw a few who were hiking with just microspikes. I did too, i am not used to hiking with the snowshoes and I felt awkward in them. From the Loj, I followed the blue trail. The first 3 miles were pretty straightforward, the last mile was intense. The views were spectacular! If I had a time (maybe 2 more hours of sunlight), I would have climbed Tabletop Mountain which was 2 miles away from Phelps.

1 month ago

Love this trail! Just did it in snow and you definitely need krampons or micro spikes. Snow shoes are not needed if the snow is packed down!

2 months ago

Did this hike Jan-15-2018 as my first winter high peak. -19 degrees at Marcy Dam. The trail itself wasn't overly technical or hard, but keep in mind that climbing these mountains in winter, with added clothing and gear, drains your energy much faster than in the summer. Wore snowshoes until i got off the van ho and onto phelps trail then switched to microspikes. the trail is too rocky/icy/ narrow to wear snowshoes safely. Beautiful views in the last quarter mile and at the rock shelf at the summit. There is a rather steep ice-filled section towards the top that will require decent spikes and steady foot/hand work, but it is climbable without special gear. Keep moving and you'll stay warm, but bring extra layers if you plan to stop for more than a few quick pictures.

We went for a sunrise hike 7/17/17, and it was SO worth it! It was muddy when we went, but we had the appropriate boots, so it was fine.

I advise extra layers for the summit if you do a sunrise hike here. The bald face makes for great views, but there are no windbreaks! I brought extra layers and I was still cold because I wanted to watch the sun rise for about an hour. We saw another pair of hikers, and one wore shorts, and they barely stayed ten minutes.

Really fun little hike. Went on December 26th. The trail is mostly very easy with a few icy steep portions. I’d say that crampons or micro-spikes would be very helpful toward the summit. Appropriate cold weather gear (balaclava/shell) are a must, as windchill can reach ~ -20F.

2 months ago

Did this hike 2 days ago in -20 degree weather. If you’d like to attempt this hike in the winter, definitely bundle up with a lot of layers and I’d recommend snow shoes. There really wasn’t any need for crampons on this hike. The hike is well marked and relatively straight forward. The view at the top is amazing and definitely pays off the effort to get up there. Took about 5 hours for the entire round trip. Definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a moderately challenging day hike in the Adirondacks.

Lots of snow, and ice up at the rocky summit. Super fun winter hike. The peak had hefty winds and low temps, but everything under the tree line was very manageable temperature-wise. We got by fine with microspikes. I think crampons would have been cool the last .1 miles but the spikes did the trick. Took us about 3.5 hours without feeling rushed. We are midwestern dudes so anyone who lives in the mountains could crush his in much less. Nonetheless, the summit was beautiful and the hike was mega fun.

Did this in December with snow and ice on the ground. Porter was a little non climatic and was difficult to tell where the peak was since there was snow on the ground. The final .1 or so to Cascade was a nice rock scramble and great views.

3 months ago

I went up on Nov 14th to bag another of the 46 high peaks. It had been a couple days after the first snow fall of the year, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’m still new to this peak climbing , and hadn’t done any in the snow/ice. On the drive up from Buffalo I climbed Arab Mountain as a warm up for the following day on Phelps. Arab Mountain wasn’t too bad...a gradual climb and though a little icy in spots, it was doable....The 4.1 mile hike to the base of Phelps wasn’t bad at all. Gradual up and down paths through the woods... crossing a river...good views at the opening near the river beds....The real work started at the initial ascent to the peak. The first 10 minutes or so was your typical rock scrambling, then the path started to get really icy. I didn’t have any micro spikes, so had to move very slowly. I scaled ( bypassed) 2 ice walls on the way up....bushwhacking through the trees on the side of the path....then when I was within 200-300 feet of the summit, I ran into an ice wall that was impassable. I don’t think spikes would have helped, I didn’t have climbing rope with me, and I was hiking solo. So after analyzing it for 10 minutes or so, ( and pissed that I was so close),I had to start my descent back down. I’ve been told that climbing in the snow is easier, as it takes a lot of the rock climbing out of the equation, but I’ll have to research that a bit more before I try to attempt that. Any input????? Drop me a tab....Kiernanfam96@aol.com... thanks, and happy and safe hiking!!

so many people...but the views let you know why

Favorite hike in the Placid area. Most of the trail is shaded and somewhat hidden. The exposure and view at the top is completely worth it.

I started hiking in the High Peaks region about 3 weeks ago and made the mistake( a very rewarding mistake) of doing Algonquin Peak first. Cascade and Porter was supposed to be much easier according to the reviews I read, but I’m already convinced that there are no easy 46 er peaks to hike. They’re all difficult!! Some just happen to be more difficult than the other ones! Porter Mountain was so so, but Cascade was spectacular!!! A must see if you’re in the neighborhood!!And now I have to start to plan my next one.

Beautiful view from cascade. Way to where the two trails meet is the hardest part of it all. Do porter first since it's farther away and the view is the lesser of the two. Very muddy and a little icy this time of year. Great hike though, friendly folk all the way up but a little busy

This was my first of the 46 peaks. I did this one because I wanted to see where my fitness level was. It seemed to go on forever, I would make sure you have enough water and food with you to recharge. I didn’t make it to Porter, but wish I had tried for it but I just didn’t have it in me that day.

The views at the top were magnificent and I’m glad I went. Make sure you have supportive footwear because the trip back down is very slippery with the crushed rocks under your feet, you will do a lot of sliding and it would be easy to sprain an ankle.

4 months ago

sawteeth pyramid gothics and armstrong loop. awesome. left parking lot at 830am and back to parking lot at 6pm. forgot to turn off recorder when back at parking

Saw no children under 12 the entire day so that tells you what the expectations are regarding this trail. Must have been 40 to 50 cars in two lots and on the side of the road when we arrived back to the car after completing this hike. CRAZY busy trail; late October, Saturday, 65 and sunny is why. I'm told it's always slammed, so get to trailhead way early. Wasn't too bad for parking when we got there at 8 am.
Easy hike, just longer-ish for noobs to hiking. This is a short trail with gradual ascent if you're doing 46'ers. Def make the right turn at the fork and do Porter (you'll know when you get there because you'll see the sign) first and do Cascade 2nd. Porter is fine for views but there's trees; it's not wide open there. Cascade is wide open for great panoramas. Porter trail was swampy so be aware. Fun to puddle jump and log walk on that trail!
Wish people would leash their dogs. Found quite a few rude hikers to that wouldn't move over to pass or even acknowledge you saying hello; hey, that's the world in which we live now. I'm used to it.
Kinda bummed about how crowded it was; tough to get good pics without a bunch of cidiots in them. Should have gotten there at 6 am I guess. And who hikes with a boom box with gangsta ramp bumpin? Thanks for the noise pollution moron...we're in the ADKS...respect!!!! This ain't Flatbush Ave.

Great views ... heard alot of people say they did cascade first ... do porter first then cascade ... a: because view for cascade is a ton better ... and b: if you do cascade last less land to travel on the way out ... helps alot ... and yes i know it’s the same mileage but helps at the end on the way down...

We did Phelps first and then Tabletop. Phelps is a solid hike, little steep toward the top, but the views from the top are a fantastic reward. Tabletop, as the name suggests, is pretty flat on top so the views are pretty obscured by the trees. You actually get a better view at a couple of points on the way up than you do at the top. The trail isn't really a trail-- you're walking up a run off channel for about 80% of the walk up from the turn off the main trail. It's super narrow in places, and a lot of it is steep rock that is the bed of the stream. Even in the fall there is still water running down it so it can be pretty slick and muddy in a lot of places. Also, the trail on the maps doesn't match up with what you actually follow, so even though it was clear that people had been through we were often questioning whether we'd managed to get off track. We would definitely do Phelps again, but Tabletop is a one and done.

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