Explore the most popular wildlife trails in Adirondack Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great trail for experienced hikers, not so much for us. Thought we were dying by the end of it. Took 5 1/2 hours to go from Parking to Cat’s via the blue trail to Thomas via the yellow trail and back down to the car. Some of the scrambles were definitely borderline 4’s. All in all good day of exercise and fun though. Recommended if you are more in shape than us and like to hike. Make sure you have bug repellant, those blood flies are nasty. Only got 1 tick on the trip.

Great climb, although no view on a cloudy day.

Nicest little mountain I have walked up in ages. On a beautiful day, with sun shining, plan to just sit and enjoy a snack or a lunch. It was almost too bad that we had to move on.

Awesome little trail. Stayed at lake colden under my tarp for a quick in and out overnighter, it rained the whole time but it was fun nontheless. I definitely have no idea why this trail is rated hard though, there's a few rock scrambles that kids or older people (maybe some smaller dogs) might have trouble with at avalanche lake, but other than that it's mostly flat.

Great hike with a mix of terrain: mossy, dirt trails in open forest of spruce and birch at the base, ridge with beautiful views of Cascade mountain, river and falls, and some moderate rock scrambling through glacial erratics. It had just finished raining before starting the hike so a few very isolated areas of mud and a bit slippery, but not really an issue with our large group of 8 preteens/teens. A little over 3 hours round trip, with breaks to take in views and lunch at the top. Highly recommend and would definitely consider doing it again.

Great hike. Perfect day for it. All 3 falls were rushing. Trail was easy to follow. Bugs did swarm if you stopped moving but it's that time of year.

Nice parking area with a little outhouse, trails are well marked ,scenery was great ,total was 5.5 miles

Great workout! And the most beautiful view you can dream of on the top!
I came before lunch and was all alone on the top.
On my way down in the afternoon I meet almost 15 people on there way op!
I prefer being all alone op there. It is a great experience.

hike was amazing micro spikes not needed, way more scenic and enjoyable then the regular in out loop. views from algonquin are breathtaking, and avalanche pass is gorgeous.

nature trips
4 days ago

beautiful trail. what is lacks in breathtaking views, it more than makes up for by being less trafficked and peaceful.

Great hike with beautiful 360 view at the top. It doesn't seem to be used all that often and we had the top of the mountain to ourselves for an hour. extremely easy but beautiful stroll through the woods for the first half of the hike but then very steep hiking and scrambling towards the top. decently muddy but could be avoided. a little ice and snow but could also be avoided. Beware that dogs are allowed but if your dog is not an avid hiker you very well may need to carry them up certain points.

Tough hike, but the 360 degree view is well worth it. Pretty easy at the beginning, but it quickly gets rough near the summit with lots of rock scrambling and ice.

went yesterday, still needed spikes for a bit near the top. this hike challenged me mentally with a steep portion of open rock. snow melt had made it wet so it was slippery in portions. was hoping for a quicker trek down but this path is steep and rocky the whole time. A map would be wise as trail markers aren't very prominent.

extremely difficult especially coming down
loved it

Very good hike to the top. Very easy and i loved it. Weather was perfect

The view from Noonmark Mountain is spectacular - with 360 degree views of the surrounding high peaks. The summit is large and rocky, with room for dozens of hikers to find a spot of their own - with only 3-4 other hikers on the mountain yesterday, we felt like the mountain was ours.

There is still ice at the top, and micro spikes would have come in very handy because both the final ascent and the South side descent were very difficult and treacherous. We're anxious to do this hike again in the fall, where it will no doubt be less technically tricky - but in any event, feel that this hike should be labeled difficult, not moderate. It is extremely steep with wonderful rock scrambles that require balance and long reaches, which might be impossible for smaller children, small pets, and older hikers.

DEC has not been up here yet to clean up the trail, though, and there were some major obstacles (big downed trees) in the way that you had to find a way to heave over or squeeze under, because there was no way around. And the signage, as noted by other reviewers, is awful. We came in from the North with no difficulty, then took the trail that led south down and away from the mountain. But at the point where we should have turned back North again, we saw only an option to go left (to route 73) or right. We went left, and headed East, thinking we were on the right trail, until we found Round Pond on our right. We ended up at the Round pond trailhead on 73, and needed a ride back to Ausable Road.

My fitbit measured a 10 mile hike - so either the trail map or the fitbit are way off.

A lovely, difficult hike with incredible views!

Mostly flat, well maintained trail. Lost Pond looks like it's very suitable habitat for trout.

Amazing views of entire High Peaks wilderness! Firetower is a large one, and was open! Stunning views well worth the 4.0mi moderate climb up! Highly recommended.

Pharaoh Lake Wilderness has an extensive trail system to many beautiful ponds and lakes. The Pharaoh Mountain Trail gives you the opportunity to get a mountain view after exploring all the lakes.

A word of caution about a descent on the north side after a rain: the exposed rock on the trail the first 1/4 mile or so from the summit can be extremely slippery. In the last five years hiking extensively in the Adirondacks—including some difficult exposed rock areas in the High Peaks—I’ve only taken two falls and both were on that stretch just below the summit of Pharaoh Mountain while descending.

Despite the falls, I still climb the mountain, but now climb the north side and descend the south side, or go there and back from the south side.

There are very nice designated camping spots on the summit if you want to haul water up.

Glidden Marsh is a nice side trip, and the trail south of the summit puts you on the northwest side of Pharaoh Lake, which is the less over-used side.

I love this wilderness area!

backpacking
10 days ago

Great season hike! Slightly muddy, very steep in places I recommend spikes. Fire tower view is amazing especially to the southeast.

hiking
11 days ago

I did this hike with my friend last weekend. I think the mile markers are incorrect. says .9 to the first falls, and 2.1 to the second and third falls. we stayed on the marked trail the entire time, put 8 miles on my fit bit, and never made it to the 2nd or third falls. I would do it again. hoping to make it to the other two falls. the first falls were quite lovely. might be too strenuous for younger children.

Easy hike, be easy on the dirt road on the way. Hardest part of the whole thing.

hiking
12 days ago

Hiked 5/8/18. I’m glad my gf and I got this fire tower off our list #15. I will never do this trail again , it kicked our ass! The first bridge was cool and then ran into a dead end once at the water. Bridge leading across was washed up about 50 yards, thankfully found detour to continue. Ran into a few run down cabins and then it became difficult with many rocks and very steep. Once we got to the Fire tower the views were stunning. I’ll rate a 5 but I recommend a lot of patience and mental positivity for this trail!

One of the more challenging loops in the Lake George area. Strenuous length of 13 miles. I personally chose to take Northwest Bay Trail first to Montcalm point & tackle the peaks in order of First, French Point, Fifth. The paths are lightly trafficked & are hard to follow at points. Trail markers are also faded & sometimes hard to locate. The beautiful views fade as you march towards Fifth peak, so if I were to do it again, I would start with Fifth, going towards French & First, to "chase the views." Might also be nice finishing with flat forest trail at the Northwest Bay. Your choice, enjoy!

Hiked this on May 6th. This was my first hike after moving back to NY in 2012. The "new" trail up the final ascent of Cathead is very nice. The traverse trail to Thomas is as wild as I remember it. False summits, rock walls and old logging roads; it's all good. Sad to see the cabin on Thomas gone, but I understand. Great day to be alive!

(May 5th) Just hiked this over the weekend. Be prepared for a lot of mud if you go this time of the year. I recommend taking the (yellow) left trail up and the (blue) right trail back.

Nice day hike. I personally chose to go 'left' at the Junction & hit Cat Mtn first, then Thomas. The climb up Cat is consistent, but not too rough. The climb to Thomas (from Cat) has some steep sections, but we hike to climb UP! Cat Mtn has great panoramic views looking Southeast & you can see the other peaks of the "Lake George 12." Thomas Mtn views are not as nice, but one section is still totally worth it. (7.1miles, ~3hrs)

Hiked Hurricane Mountain on 5/1/2018. Access road blocked with large snow pile & blowdown. Parked on the road a few feet up from the snowplow turnaround & walked the short distance up to the Hurricane trailhead. No other cars or people today. Last sign into Hurricane was two days prior. Was 9:45am & by the looks of things, it was going to be a great day. Perfect weather, warm even in the morning. Didn't even wear anything special, regular thermal, rothco cargos, knife, lighter, beacon, phone, trekking poles & was off. I read this hike was 2.6 miles but DEC signage says 3 so I always go by what they say when they say it. Today's hike with the access road, the hike itself & getting decently lost twice in the same spot on the ascent & descent, I'm calling it all 7 miles.

Hike starts out easy and stays easy. Right off the bat, it's a slush pile the whole way up. My feet never get wet. My feet were more soaked than they've ever been by days end. When you not trudging through actual sloshy ground ground, you're walking on an extremely obviously unstable pack above the stream bed. Luckily my foot didn't break through much & when it did, the water was not deep. Wore Hillsounds all day. It should have been snowshoes but it just felt like too much at the start. The lightning's would have been nice. No serious postholing though either. I was lucky. Passed a few minor water crossings, nothing crazy & before long was at signage saying I was .3 away.

My recent high peak & firetower hikes have been totally socked in, snow, rain, both, whatever. Probably my last 10 hikes have just been less than favorable weather. I was definetly ready to see what Hurricane was going be at the top especially after the stories I've read & amazing weather at hand. After the short .3 I was there & oh my gawwwwsh, it was amaaaaaaazing! Out of 50ish or so hikes in my career, this had to be top 10. It's really outraegeous. Even up there in the middle of it all it was warm, the wind was warm, sun was hot, high noon. My shirt was somewhat wet from sweat, was completely dry in minutes. Climbed the tower slowly & carefully and took a million pictures. Hung out on top, solo, for a half hour, took another million pictures, awed in amazement of The Great Range & many more, made a few calls, answered some texts & decided to go.

Right on my way down off the summit the sun was beating me good, not uncomfortably but good. I decided, the hell with it, i'll start to work on my tan now. Took the shirt off, tied around waist 80's style & flew on downwards. I kept thinking man, someone's gonna come walking along amd be like what the hell? Sure enough I wasn't wrong, lol. The only other hiker I would see all day. I apologized for being half clothed & we chatted for a few minutes. He said his feet were wet & I couldn't help but think, if your feet are wet now, they're going to be soaked later. He still had a ways to the summit. Said later to the gentleman & long story short made the uneventful slide/ skid down & thru a now muddy & soaked streambed where snow once covered just a few hours earlier.

Hit the register signed out, walked the road to my car, parked my ass right in the middle of the street & had lunch with the call of the falcons heard repeatadly overhead. It was a killer day. Perfect in every sense of the idea of an Adirondack adventure/ hike.

To note: I never post Firetower trip reports but with the extended winter & large amount of inquiries regarding conditions, I figured it could be helpful to some. Plus it was so damn good I had to rant.

Final thought...

It's really wet out there. Still lots of snow up high, slushy, slippery & muddy everywhere else. Bring gear. As everyone says, you only regret the gear you didn't bring. I went minimal today but a few extras would've been nice. Like water, water would've been nice. Ha :P

birding
15 days ago

This was my second time here. I love this trail! This time we found a lookout that offered a much better view than the lookout ledge. Great time!

It was one of the greatest hikes on the Giant mountain trail today. It was challenge and fun hiking on icy and snowy sections. It was fantastic view in the breeze.

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