Hurricane Mountain Trail: Northern Approach

MODERATE 106 reviews
#17 of 180 trails in

Hurricane Mountain Trail: Northern Approach is a 5.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Keene, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,528 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

walking

bird watching

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

hiking
5 days ago

Great winter trail. Park and walk 1/4 mile in to the trailhead (road not maintained the whole way) - flat for the first mile or so - then UP. Medium grade then a nice steep last half mile or so to the top. Windy AF. Great 360 views. Fun arse slides on the way down. Micro spikes on hard packed snow and ice - 3 hrs round trip with stops. Fun hike.

hiking
6 days ago

Hiked 02/11/19 nice hike no snow all ice micro spikes in out easy breezy.....

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked on 10/24. Great hike, it was raining and then snowing so absolutely no view but great nonetheless. Took us 5 hours. Spikes needed near and on the summit.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful 360 view at the top. Extremely windy but so worth it. It took me around 4 hours to complete.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a moderate trail. Well maintained. It is quite windy on the summit. That's why it is named as Hurricane Mountain.

hiking
4 months ago

Hiked on 10/14/18. Beautiful hike to see 360 degree views of fabulous fall foliage, Lake Champlain, the Green Mountains and the Adirondacks. The trail is a bit muddy in spots, but not bad. Watch out for the ice and water on the some of the rocks just before heading to the summit. The top of the fire tower can be windy and cold, so make sure to bring a hat and gloves. It took us about 2 hours each way with a nice break at the top for lunch in a sheltered spot away from the wind.

4 months ago

Hiked on 10/13. Was a little muddy in parts but was one of the prettiest hikes I’ve done. It was snowing towards the top and most trees were covered by the time we reached the top. Before the fire tower were two spot with incredible views! It was a little cloudy but visibility was still good. the fire tower was covered in ice and a little slippery but still had great views. Hiked with 3 other friends and it was one of our favorites! 1.25 hours up, about 40 minutes spent on top, and about 1.25 hours down with a lunch pit stop. All in all a beautiful sight for a shorter trail

4 months ago

Great hike, good feel for Adirondack hiking. A little heads up, sign distance on 9N is off—that’s distance to false summit. From that opening to tower is another half mile going down and then scrambling rocks to tower.
If taking new hikers don’t let them get fooled when they reach the top, top is not the destination.

hiking
4 months ago

Amazing hike and one of the BEST views we have ever had!!! As usual, AllTrails had the hike a bit shorter than both our Apple watch and AllTrails Pro clocked us at (6.8 miles). We felt that this hike should have been rated Moderate Vs the Herd rating given - aside from some light scrambling near the top, this was a solid moderate hike.. Do it, you’ll be (very) glad you did!!

hiking
4 months ago

A perfect day for a hike. Overcast, 54 degrees, and fog at the summit.
The trail was very wet and slippery after a couple of days of rain, but who cares.
The summit with the tower was very busy. About 20 people including a group of 10 climbing the tower. One hiker, a DEC employee, complained it was too busy and that daily access should be limited like they do in Maine. I drove 3 ½ hours for this hike and I would have been extremely disappointed to have been turned away if the trail was "too busy."
I enjoy the fire towers all across the state and do not want to be restricted from them. I encourage anyone who wishes to hike our beautiful forests to do so.

4 months ago

I had the good Fortune to go up to the top on a sunny mild day September 22., via the northern route. Beautiful 360° views from the top. The trail had a gradual incline, each miles increases grade, the last mile was moderate with occasional steep spots and short scrambles near the top. Watch your head at the top of the fire tower stairs- looking at your feet might buy you a headache on an overhanging board. The woods were sun dappled with frequent patches of birch and deep green mosses covering large areas. AllTrails had distance listed as 5.5 miles round trip, I clocked 6.3 miles.? I highly recommend this hike for one of the shorter approaches to big views. Enjoy !

4 months ago

My GPS sent me up O'Toole Rd to a trailhead. The trail starts off easy but the trail that branches off to Hurricane Mtn becomes moderate with a narrow water crossing and then as the incline increases, the trail becomes harder with some climbing. The trail could be marked a bit better, but all in all a great challenging hike with amazing views from the tower, summit and surrounding ledges.

hiking
5 months ago

Very open and wide summit as your reward for a moderate plus hike. I’m sure the fire tower is sturdy enough, but I wouldn’t climb on it again.....

hiking
6 months ago

My husband and I did this hike on a beautiful Saturday. We started earlyish (8am) and saw about half a dozen people on our way up, about twenty at the summit, and a handful on the way down. All this to say we liked how less traveled this trail was! The first mile and a half are very easy hiking, it's the second half of the hike that really goes up up up! It took us about an hour and a half to summit. The fire tower at the top was awesome and the views were breathtaking. I would do this hike again!

hiking
6 months ago

As everyone said, easy start and then some tougher spots, but nothing technical, just challenging. Not great for beginners and not for anyone out of shape.
That said, I'm no athlete! Great views from the beautiful summit. We got chased off by an approaching thunderstorm that made the hike even more memorable. There are lots of other peaks in the area that I'd like to try, but I might hike this one again, if that is an endorsement.

hiking
7 months ago

Wow. My favorite Firetower yet! Set in a picturesque location for perfect views of the High Peaks! At 3,678' this mountain is no push-over (only 300' from being a 46er itself).

We took this Northern approach & parked at the last spot before the 'chain fence'. Nice easy walk to warm up & eventually the trail goes consistently up. Really great hike. At the top, it opens up to vast rock outcroppings for an almost 360 view. Wide rocky, treeless peak for the most part. Firetower itself is a little beat up from the weather, but safe & a must-climb for wild views.

Incredible sights of High Peaks! Highly recommended. Enjoy!

hiking
7 months ago

This is a very nice hike. The trail is lightly trafficked. Little bit of rock scrambling is required to get to the summit - but nothing scary. I wouldn't classify this hike as hard. I made it in 4 hours with a long stay at the summit. The bonus is a fire tower! It was nicely restored and you can get on top. The views are stunning! Get up there!

hiking
7 months ago

This is a great starter mountain for a person with any level of experience, with a huge reward of 360º views at the summit. It's a nice quick climb. We hiked as a group of 8, most people having never hiked a mountain before. We were up & down in 5 hours. Awesome hike.

8 months ago

Great climb with lovely streams and plants. Close to lake placid for a bite to eat after.

8 months ago

did the north trail this morning,took me about 1.5 hrs up and back down but I'm also 29 so yeah, great trail if you want to be challenged physically. The North side is mostly wash out path with a lot of flat rock to navigate, be mind full on feet placement on wet rocks and mud on shoes.

hiking
8 months ago

I can definitely see why this trailhead is rated hard. Starts out nice and flat, then nothing but rock and steep uphill climb from then on. The spectacular view at the top was worth every bit of effort. Absolutely stunning,

hiking
8 months ago

I am a fairly frequent hiker and would consider myself to be in good shape. I would consider this more of a moderate hike than hard. Great views at the top and the first 1.5 miles or so are very doable for the majority of people, regardless of experience level. Would for sure do again!

8 months ago

Hiked on 5/25/18. Took the trail from the Adirondack Park Preserve. The first 1.5 miles or so was a relatively easy walk in the woods. As you hit the 2 mile marker it became much steeper and the climb uphill began. Elevation increased and the trail thinned out with lots of rocks and some mud spots. Reached summit in about 2 1/2 hours. I now see why this mountain is called “Hurricane” the winds were brutal, I’d say 35-45mph. The summit was huge with lots of big boulders and the views were amazing. Could see a lot of the High Peaks. Fire tower was damaged at the top and looked as if it was undergoing repair. Made it to the second tier and felt like I was going to get blown away from the wind. Definitely an awesome mountain though. #17

hiking
9 months ago

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

hiking
9 months ago

Hiking after a spring snowstorm of 6-8” of wet snow may not be the best idea. The going was slushy, slippery and wet. Thanks to the gentleman who blazed the trail today, markers are scarce. The first mile is easy. After that it is a pretty steady incline. It was a perfect sunny day and the view from the top did not disappoint.

hiking
10 months ago

Great views from the top! Nice, quick ascent for a great view payoff!

Sunday, August 27, 2017

I did this as part of a double header today. First I did Poke-O-Moonshine. In hindsight I should have done this first, although if I did I am not sure I would have done both. I did the longer route. The first third seemed as easy as P-O-M but then you cross the bridge and all bets are off. It was steep and seemed to last forever. There is a nice lookout just below the tower. There were 3 or 4 trees over the upper portion that could make it difficult for some people. Also although the trail is relatively easy to follow the DEC must be running low on markers, they were few and far between.

The tower was open and the views from the base and in the tower are absolutely amazing. Made the pain and strain worth it.

I met a hiker on the trail who is getting ready to celebrate their 90th birthday. It is things like that that make these hikes satisfying. I can only hope that I can have that kind of longevity.

hiking
Sunday, August 06, 2017

Good variety of grades. Nice vistas at the summit.

Friday, August 04, 2017

The views from the top are amazing and worth the climb! A climb it is though...we took the route up from hurricane Rd so it was a bit longer but apparently a slightly easier grade? Not sure about that!

hiking
Monday, July 03, 2017

Great hike on July 2,2017. This is the second time I have climbed this mountain. Trail was very muddy due to all of the recent rains which made it a bit slippery going back down the mountain. A great work out for me at the age of 67!

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