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One of the hardest and most rewarding of the non-46er hikes in the Adirondacks. Our second time doing this loop. We had the trail to ourselves (we encountered no one the entire hike) on a mid-September Monday.

We hiked the loop clockwise (only first half of the hike was recorded). I was engaged in deep conversation with my partner and missed the cutoff for the southern range and added started climbing Fivemile Mountain before discovering my mistake and backtracking to the obvious intersection where we continued to Fifth Peak lean-to and lookout, and then on to French Point Mountain (best views), and First Peak.

While on French Point Mountain, we were eating our lunch when a male bald eagle soared up the eastern cliff on a thermal and passed right overhead. He was joined by two juveniles and/or females a few seconds later. Awe-inspiring to say the least. On our descent from First Peak, I encountered my first eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake! It rattled at me before slithering into the tall grass on the side of the trail. It was at least 4" in diameter and probably 4 or 5 feet long. It was sunning on the rocky part of the trail where tall grass grows right next to the trail.

We reached the junction that leads to Montcalm Point and I left my partner napping while I lowered myself into the cool waters of Lake George. I rejoined my partner and we hiked the 5+ miles out in about 2.5 hours that seemed to last forever. Total distance estimated at 14.5 miles (including error on the ridge and excursion to Montcalm Point) and time was 8h 45m.

The first time hiking a “Hard” trail. The experience was really amazing. We did it clock wise. The scenery is awesome. You could see lots of small animals and walking in it is comfortable. Some places is very rocky and steep, and I think it is not good for kids and young children. We started at red mark and then blue all to the end.
The only thing that we feel a little “bad” is that it is easy to get lost. We were planning to our route but lost twice. We met another couple who was here the second time and they got lost either. So, it is not a bad thing to be careful about this.
The trail although was suppose to be 12.6miles provided by AllTrails, we and other people we met all think that the actual distance is about 15miles maybe. Therefore, be well planned and plan more time before you start.
Another important thing is that please bring enough water and food. Really recommend some functional drinks instead of just water to keep electrolyte balance, and some digestible food. Also, recommend wear long trousers instead of shorts. The sun is not strong while waking because of those tall lefy trees, so don’t worry too much about burned.
Have to mention another thing. If by any chance you have emergency, call 911 and they will rescue you but it is better to try your best to walk down the mountain and by the river. They have boats and will pick you up in 30-60min. They will not charge you and they are really really helpful and kind people. (Don’t ask me how I know this,haha).
It was a unforgettable experience here. I hope everyone will enjoy it and please take care of yourselves.

Trail: Generally good condition, very long, especially the last (flat) 5.2 miles. If you’ve hiked any of the Adirondack High Peaks, you’ll find the trail conditions a dream - there are some rocky sections and two rather steep, sketchy, short descents, but much of the trail is pine duff. Plan on this being an all-day hike. I recorded 13.8 miles and 3120' from the trail register.

Views: Outstanding, each peak has better views than the last. Open, grassy summits provide the best views of Lake George to be found, French Point Mountain and First Peak are not to be missed.

Water: There are zero water sources on the trail until you get to the lake at mile 8.6. I went through 3.5 liters just to get to the lake on a sunny, 80 degree day. At that point I could filter. On the final leg from the lake back to the trailhead, plan on 1 to 1.5 liters. I’d bring at least 3 liters and a filter, or a minimum of 4 liters with no filter.

Camping: 150ft off the trail and 150ft from any water source. Please obey this. No one wants to see your fire pit on the summits. There is a lean-to on the first summit (Fifth Peak) that is in good condition.

Misc: Spotted one very large Timber Rattlesnake, 5-6’ (mid-September).

hiking
11 days ago

Nice view, trail up the mountain is a bit eroded

hiking
13 days ago

Very gradual until the top with lots of spots for the dog (or humans) to swim on a hot day. Great views! Somewhat crowded by the thirteenth lake area. Our dog hikes often, and I know some said their dogs couldn’t make it all the way. Our Aussie/husky 50 lb medium dog had no issues on this one, but smaller or less agile dogs may have a tougher time.

Hiked this in early may. There was still snow, but it was warm (70s by afternoon). There had been a rainstorm the night before, causing the rocky ascent to be pure ice after the first mile. It was amazing at the top, though.

Great hike for a family. Not too difficult for our 8 and 6 year olds and beautiful view at the summit. Would highly recommend.

Gorgeous trail. I am in good shape and I definitely broke a sweat moving at a good pace. The grade is 44% sometimes. So, although it may seem short, it is not a quick hike to knock out with the family. If it is wet, you're going to need proper hiking shoes. All said and done, that view is incredible!

Beautiful trail, nice and easy and dog friendly until the top. We got pretty close to the top and had to turn around due to our dogs sliding on the rocks and unable to climb the roots of trees. We boosted our dogs a few times to get closer but didn't feel comfortable or safe enough bringing them further. Loved the view of the lake, pond and stream on the way up.

I admit that I'm not in my greatest physical shape. I underestimated how challenging this trail really is and I was humbled. I had brand new Lowa hiking boots and I'm glad I brought them. We had PERFECT weather. I do not believe this is "moderate" in scale. It leans more to the "difficult" scale. I live in California and hike the Sierras often. This hike was gorgeous once at the top. We saw 360°, it was windy, much cooler and the fire tower is the prize.

Really well worn trail. It's only 2 miles to the summit but it's a hell of a 2 miles. You definitely have to work to get to the top. When you get up into the cloud line the fungi become plentiful and exciting to observe. If it is cloudy and you are climbing up through a cloud the top gets really, really slippery. This makes the descent really difficult. I'm a late 20s male and slipped on to my butt at least 5 times. I would personally call this a more advanced trail. Some "moderate" trails on the app are super easy, but this was definitely not easy. I would personally not recommend this trail for your dogs or small children.

I imagine that on a clear day the views would be excellent. I knew it was cloudy while climbing up in the first place, so the views of the inside of the clouds were not a disappointment.

Terrific hike with a fair amount of scrambling at the top. Lots of water (lake, pond and streams!) for our 2 dogs. Took 3 of us 4 hours to make it to the top of the peak and back. Even on a cloudy day, the peak was worth it. Will definitely be doing this one again.

Like others said, confusing to get to, but worth the trip! We took our 2 dogs and it was a good hike for all of us. Short hike up hill for a rewarding view. Easiest way to get to it is from Garnet Hill Lodge, go towards the back down to the Ski Shop, up the hill across from that to W Blake Pond trail until you see a sign for Balm of Gilead.

on Peaked Mountain Trail

hiking
21 days ago

Great hike to the Peaked Pond with nice views of thirteenth lake, a stream, and rolling hills. The last mile to the mountain was steep, challenging, and made slippery due to the light rain. It was definitely not easy, and we had to grab onto roots and rocks at times. We made it to the top but didn’t have a view due to the clouds. There were trails to a couple of ponds on route to Peaked Pond that are worth another trip to explore.

Very nice hike with great views! Don’t think many would walk the road from the first parking lot if they knew there was plenty of parking at the trail head - believe me, don’t waste your time walking the road, just drive the (narrow) road up to the trail head and you’ll be glad you did.

Jim was great tour guide

Terrific hike. everything you could ask for. Beautiful lake to start and end the hike on (go swimming). Moderate hike to an awesome pond. and a Tough ascent up the mountain to get a good workout. great views. the trail,is aroimd 7.5 miles total.

What is the point of hiking a sweaty 2 miles to zero visibility?!? We had thick fog that started the last mile and it was a very steep, slippery decent. I did it and will not be doing it again. I wish the view would have been there.

Worth the hike! The views were awesome and so were the carvings. The rogue trail under the rocks was narrow, but offered a up close look at the underneath of the overhangs. It has rained a lot lately, so the trails were slippery at times, but manageable.

This was my first hike to the top and as stated by others, it is challenging but so worth it. You really must pay attention on the way up as well as down as it can get very slippery. I was told by other hikers that visibility can sometimes be limited due to clouds but on our particular hike, the views were breathtaking from the tower. Another surprise, the hundreds of dragonflies that met us when we reached the opening. I will definitely do this hike again.

My partner and I did the loop as an overnight. The first day, we started out from the Clay Meadows parking lot around 1:30pm and headed up to fifth mountain via the red trail. The trail was fairly steep, but not too bad. We got to the junction with the blue trail with plenty of time to spare, so we dropped our packs and continued along the red trail in hopes of a dip in the lake. About two thirds of the way down, we decided we were content to stop for a snack at a nice view point and then head back up. Anyone filtering their water should note that the stream at the junction of the blue and red trails is the last reliable water source until after the trail fully descends from the mountains and reaches the lake maybe 7ish miles in. The fifth mountain lean-to was basic, but quite clean and we'll maintained with a composting toilet nearby. The views near it were spectacular, with an excellent vantage point for the sunset. The next day, we continued along the trail, coming across two rattlesnakes, cool, shady forest, and plenty more stunning vistas. Definitely recommend going out to Montcalm Point for a swim--though we didn't want to hang around outside of the water, due to biting black flies like you'd get at the beach. All in all, an excellent hike!

This hike was amazing. It was only 1.8 or 2.0 miles and it only took an hour or a little bit more to hike. The views were amazing! Would totally recommend it!

Great overall hike for some perfect views! Take this recommended Loop and you wont be disappointed. No part of this trail is too hard that a family cant do. We got to the top in 45min, & continued on to bushwack to Erebus (that takes some planning). Feel free to send me a message for best recommended route. Enjoy!

hiking
1 month ago

This was an incredible hike! Great workout and spectacular views. At a brisk pace and with about 2 mi of trail running on the way back, it took us around 3 hours to get to the top of Peaked Mountain and back to the parking lot. Closer to 8 miles, not 6.2. If you’re planning to climb to the top and not turn around at the pond, know that the last section should be rated difficult and the hike overall is moderate not easy in my opinion.

The last 5 miles along the lake are beautiful, but seem to take forever!

Began at the Hogtown parking lot and did the trail to the summit, then the pond and back. We take our time so it took all morning. First time that we had done a mountain summit and it was incredible! Plan on going again in the fall as the view must be wonderful then.

A word of warning. This is a beautiful walk along Peaked Mt. Brook to the Pond. The Easy rating is appropriate here. But the trail up from the pond has steep rocky sections. It is enjoyable and the views make it worth the effort but it does require effort.

Loved it and can’t wait to go back

Second time up Blue in July. Did this on a Monday morning. Trail was quite busy with families and summer camp groups. Trail etiquette was not very good with lots of candy/gum wrappers, groups with music playing on speakers, failure to yield trail to descending hikers. But I guess that comes with the territory, with a short hike to a fire tower so close to vacationland.

I dashed up the trail and made the summit in 57 minutes, and descended in just about 30 minutes.

Fun hike, a bit rocky at times, great view at the top. Would definitely hike again!

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