Balsam Mountain from Rider Hollow Rd

moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(348)
Big Indian Wilderness

Balsam Mountain from Rider Hollow Rd is a 5.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Arkville, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

Length5.1 miElevation gain1,725 ftRoute typeLoop
kid friendlyCampingHikingNature tripsRunningForestViewswild-flowersWildlifeNo dogs
Description
Waypoints (0)

Note: This trail is accessed by a seasonal road so be sure to check conditions before making your way to the trailhead.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (352)
Photos (807)
Recordings (318)
Completed (540)
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E T-D
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 23, 2021
SnowshoeingGreat!Snow

Snowshoes necessary! On the way up, two ladies had broken trail (thanks!) so it made the 3-6 inches of new snow easier to wade through. I ended up ahead of my beloved trail-breakers on the way down, and had to blaze the descent amidst more new snow falling. The hike was pretty, but with the snow squalls there were no views up top. Good little workout, and met nice people. Looking forward to my summer summit!

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Rachel Fagiano
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 23, 2021
HikingIcySnow

Trail was well packed and doable in microspikes, a little bit of postholing along the way. Really pretty and not crowded -- couldn't ask for a nicer day. A note that the very end of the road by the trailhead wasn't fully plowed and might be hard to navigate in a none 4wd car.

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Denise Bauer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 22, 2021
Hiking

Awesome hike today with A LOT of snow, well packed trails and friendly hikers along the way. We bush wacked down the mountain and were amazed by how deep the snow was in places. Not crowded and just beautiful with a breathtaking snow covered peak!

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Richie Scarponi
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 17, 2021
Hiking

Amazing, snow shoes or micro spikes needed.

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Yulmp 2
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 16, 2021
HikingGreat!Snow

Went counterclockwise. Snowshoes are required for adults. My 8 year old daughter did fine with micro spikes. Nice hike.

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Fielding Water
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 14, 2021
HikingSnow
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john zuwasti curran
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 14, 2021
HikingSnow

Completed this hike with a four year old. Snowshoes were necessary every step of the way.

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George Kushner
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 13, 2021
HikingSnow
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T S
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 9, 2021
Hiking
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George Wukoson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 7, 2021
Hiking

Snowy already, with 1-2 inches added during. Had snowshoes on whole time but didn’t need for first 1/3rd (up to left side of the stingray turn)

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Dee Marie
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 7, 2021
Hiking

Very challenging with the snow. Snowshoes are definitely needed with the amount of snow . Love it

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john zuwasti curran
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 7, 2021
HikingSnow

Attempted clockwise without snowshoes; turned back after 1.5 miles.

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Man Trinh
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 6, 2021
Hiking
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Jordan Bulanda
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 5, 2021
Hiking

You absolutely need snowshoes for this hike!! We toughed through it without them but the last mile to the summit was ROUGH. Intended to do this counter-clockwise but ended up going back down the way we came. No issues crossing the stream. Poles were very helpful, but we didn’t end up using spikes. If we had snowshoes this would have been an amazing winter hike!

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Dave MacEntee
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 30, 2021
Hiking

Deep drifts on the way up going clockwise. A little more packed down on the descent with a few deep drifts.

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Mike K
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 26, 2021
HikingIcySnow
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T Bird
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 24, 2021
HikingSnow

Fun Catskill 3500 peak. On the shorter side, completed in under 3 hours. We went counter clockwise red-blue-yellow-red so the stream crossings were first. The water was low, so no issues. The summit was a gorgeous forested winter wonderland with branches covered in snow. Nice view off to the right just past the summit. Steep coming down the yellow at times. Slid down one scramble on our bums :). Didn’t see to many people. But those we did were all taking it the opposite way, clockwise. Likely to avoid the stream crossing first. Which again, was a breeze this weekend. Trail conditions were great the whole way. No ice as the trail was snow packed. Few snow drift areas. Microspikes still helpful. A very cold day but the sun kept us warm.

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Christina C
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 24, 2021
Hiking

Went anti-clockwise, conquered the streams and steepest terrain first. Super cold day but the sun makes all the difference. Trails are broken in so it was easy to walk on. Just spikes. Quite a handful are heading down as I was making my way up. View was spectacular with clear blue sunny sky. What was more memorable was a little chickadee which flies from tree to tree, definitely this chickadee was enjoying the great view, I bet the chill too. Wee-my way down on steep slopes. See no one on the way down.

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ToniAnn Fanizzi
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 23, 2021
Hiking
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Sam Cherubin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 22, 2021
HikingSnow

Great loop hike with decent snow-pack on the trail, few sections had 2-3 ft snow drifts but overall the trails were easy to follow and were packed down...moderate hike up with a steep section towards the top but it didn't last too long...hiked with snowshoes, and highly recommend them for the deeper snow drifts and to further pack down the trail

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Andrew Craigie
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 21, 2021
Hiking
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Lauryn T
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 20, 2021
HikingGreat!IcySnow

Hiked up to Balsam summit today (January 19th). We took the clockwise loop (Red>Yellow>Blue>Red) and would recommend doing the loop vs the out and back. The trail was mostly snow packed but there was a couple spots that the snow had blown over where we had to trek in ankle deep snow until the path re-emerged. This was mostly in the final stretch to the top from the Yellow trail. Not a lot of people out today, only came across (2) pairs of hikers the entire time. You will definitely need micro spikes and a good waterproof winter boot for trudging through the snow and ice. No views of the other peaks at the actual summit but the serene untouched forest at the top made the hike well worth the effort. There’s one small viewing area that is unmarked. Look for it before reaching the summit if coming up clockwise from the Yellow trail. We found the way down (Red trail) to be fine. The biggest concern we read about were the streams. Today they were very low and easy to cross without getting wet. The deepest part of the stream is by the end of the loop near the lean-to. No problems getting across there either.

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Morgan Marzella
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 18, 2021
Hiking

Had to break out my spikes about 1/2 way up when a short squall came in. No view at the top which was disappointing, as the view on a clear day would be gorgeous. Either way, good exercise and great trail.

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Eric Rosenfeld
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 18, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful day with some clouds and sun and little wind at the trailhead. At the summit it was snowing quite heavily (no view) but it was a crisp winter wonderland up there. Microspikes needed but not snowshoes.

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