Lyon Mountain Firetower Trail

HARD 122 reviews

Lyon Mountain Firetower Trail is a 7.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Ellenburg Depot, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
7.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,922 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

rocky

One of the tougher Firetower hikes with two options to the summit that offers full 360 degree views. Lyon Mountain, at 3830 feet, is the highest point in Clinton County and the highest point north of the Saranac River. It is located in the northeastern part of Adirondack Park, west of Plattsburgh, NY in the Chazy Highlands Wild Forest. There is a new 3.4 mile trail that winds its way to the summit and fire tower. The trail has an overall elevation gain of 1900 feet over the 3.4 miles. The old trail is shorter (2.5 m each way) and steeper. The hike is long but you are rewarded with a 360 degree view from the fire tower. Views all the way to Montreal to the north, the Green Mountains and Vermont to the East and the high peaks to the south.

15 days ago

Awesome hike and beautiful views!

hiking
15 days ago

My Adirondack homebase trail. The old trail is a straight uphill slog that I used to resent being dragged on, the new trail is a delight that winds its way around the mountain very gradually using all the best principles of modern trail design. You'll pass through a bunch of different types of forest before the summit, which is the only part where you get a taste of the old trail, scrambling uphill through partially exposed rock face. Fortunately that part is relatively short, is beautiful with the trees, moss, and views, and is rewarded in short order by the great 360º views at the top. Lyon Mountain is just shy of being a 46er and is the only peak of this height in this corner of the park, so the views from the top are a very different experience than those closer to Keene Valley.

15 days ago

pretty easy hike if you're used to the high peaks but a great hike none the less! I took the switchback trail from the parking lot and would rate it as moderate, honestly anybody who is mildly fit can summit this hike and have a good time. It really only gets steep for a bit after the slide close to the top, nothing crazy though. Nice views and very little bugs.(July) If you're into trail running you'll love this route as well.

hiking
28 days ago

The views at the top from the fire tower were phenomenal!! This trail is rated as hard but don't let that totally scare you off. My husband and I are in good shape and we hiked up in 1 hour 35 minutes and back down in 1 hour 20 minutes on the switch back trail. It definitely gets steep towards the top and has some nice tripping hazards(rocks) along the way as you get higher up the mountain. Beautiful hike and a lot of fun! We hiked it on 18 July 18, and there were no bugs and it was a nice cool summer day. I highly recommend this hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Lyon Mountain is the Northern Most Firetower mountain in the Adirondack Park. We snowshoed to this summit and fire tower as part of the Adirondack Fire Tower Challenge. It was a wonderful snowshoe. The view from the top is amazing. You can see all the way to the Champlain Valley and Vermont!

hiking
1 month ago

We did this hike yesterday and found it to be moderate. We were all fit and experienced hikers. It took us 1h50 to get to the top, all while taking breaks to grab snacks or water and to look at the scenary (fun mushrooms!). The view on the top is awesome though, especially from the fire tower.

hiking
1 month ago

This was my first fire tower hike. The view from the tower made the hike worth it. I did the hike in running shoes and will get a good pair of hiking shoes/boots before I try this one again. Going up was fine with runners but I would have liked more stability on the way down. It was a beautiful day and the shaded trail was appreciated on such a hot sunny day. I look forward to my next hike in the Adirondacks.

hiking
1 month ago

So this is a moderate trail if you’re in shape. In my group, 2 of us have never been hiking, and the other person hadn’t been hiking in a couple years and has put on 40lbs since her last hike. Needless to say, it was brutal. Going up took us 2 hours and 40 minutes, coming back down was only 2 hours. The last 40 minutes of the hike is the worst, but we survived. We’re all overweight alcoholics and even though it sucked, the views were worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Love this mountain! We took the new trail which is a switch back trail. Took about 2.5 hours up and 2.5 hours down. Not a whole lot of technical moves and the incline is gradual almost gentle. The day we went there was wind and we ended up adding extra layers at the summit. Some rocky portions with a mix of forested areas. I wouldn’t consider this mountain hard, but endurance is needed as our tracking device had us at 10 miles total.

hiking
1 month ago

2 adults and 2 kids (6 and 9) and a puppy. We took the old trail on the way up. Took us about 2hrs. Great view and no crowds. Everybody was really happy. I'd say that its moderately hard with steep sections.

hiking
2 months ago

6/3/18... Hiked this trail 5+ times. 1st time this year. Love this hike! Beautiful views of Lake Champlain, Vermont, the High Peaks and into Canada. Fire tower is open. A great practice hike to get ready for High Peaks. Good marked trail. Only a couple spots with a little mud. I always take the marked longer, but less steep trail... Highly recommend!!

hiking
2 months ago

A great fire tower hike whether you take the steeper, shorter trail (Our preference) or the longer, easier switchback trail to the top. A beautiful view and not overly crowded.

birding
2 months ago

So many trails in the ADK are straight shots. Lynn's switchback are a welcome change! Great trail! As should be expected, the trail is very wet right now and there was a bit of ice still the last .5 mile to the summit. Had no issues in microspikes. We summited in a cloud!

hiking
10 months ago

Coming from Montreal this was a perfect little 1 day roadtrip/hike, took the back roads to get there (Saint-Chrysostome, same time as highway) went through a small borders office (that closes a 4pm)
there's a nice park at the end of Chazy lake, keep an eye out for Lowenburg road to get to the Lyon mountain parking lot, the sign is hidden behind trees.
the hike was great! Starts ordinary and gets more and more technical. Crossed a couple of small creeks, lot's of fallen trees, moss, big boulders etc...
took us 2h to get to the top and 1h15 to get back down, it was a 13km (not 10km as this page says)
The top is amazing, the view is incredible!
That shaky/rattling fire tower is a bit sketchy at first but well worth it, watch your head when you get to the top...

11 months ago

Challenging hike but well worth it. Being a novice hiker I thought I may have picked the wrong trail but we got through it. A moderate challenge but I wouldn't call it difficult. There is one section near the top that has a fairly steep ascent with large rocks on the path that were wet and slick at the time. Other than that it wasn't too bad. It felt very rewarding at the end of the day.

11 months ago

Did this hike early May and learned how the temperature can drop 10 degrees every 1000 feet up. It was snowing at the top and the trail was all snow the last 0.5 miles up. The fire tower was frosty and unfortunately the view was poor because a cloud was sitting right on top of us. Finding the trail head was not too difficult. You go on a dirt road to get to it and there was plenty of parking especially since no one hikes mountains early May! I would like to try this one again in different weather conditions. Overall not hard and the trail was not near as rocky as the ones I have done in the past.

hiking
11 months ago

My first hike, and it was a great experience! The way to the top wasn't excessively difficult, but the views were astonishing. We reached the top to find ourselves engulfed in a cloud, and as it passed we eventually saw the beautiful views open up. I would definitely recommend this trail, it has well placed checkpoints and a very clear path.

Friday, August 04, 2017

Nice trail.... Hard for people with no hiking experience like us. We got sun, rain and thunderstorms.... It was good

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

My hiking partner and I took the switchback trail and found it really nice and relatively easy. Views are gorgeous on the top. I wouldn't claim the switchback trail as hard, but moderate. Only wish there was a sign and the parking lot indicating which way the trail is, even though it's not too hard to figure out.

hiking
Sunday, July 23, 2017

Great new trail and gorgeous views at the top. Doable for any level of hiker. It was a little muddy in parts, but not a problem. Hiked early yesterday and only encountered a few folks. Met more families on the way down.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Always a beautiful hike and great for kids and first timers. There is a long switch back trail or the old trail that is much shorter but lots of round stones to hurt your ankles! The switchback is my choice. I did once run face to face with a black bear but it thankfully ran off. The view at the top of this mountain is truly breathtaking!

hiking
Friday, July 21, 2017

It was a challenging climb, would suggest to moderate climbers. I did the switchback which is still a bit challenging. Love the view of the Chazy lake at the top!

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Loved this hike! It was great even with a little bit of rain. A little bit hard to find gps takes you to the town. The hike is off Chazy lake Rd. The trail was beautiful plus very wet. At one point we were walking up what appeared to be a river bed. We weren't sure if we were still on the trail, the markings are there but very spaced out. So if you find yourself in what seems like a riverbed you are going in the right direction, you will see a little red dot as you get higher. It's been very wet this summer but can see how nice the trail would be when it got a little drier. The views are spectacular!

hiking
Saturday, July 01, 2017

After hiking up the new trail this winter we wanted to check out the old trail which is much steeper but much shorter. It's a tough short hike (if you take the old trail) with rewarding views of Chazy Lake, Lake Champlain, the Adirondack mountains and the green mountains of Vermont!

hiking
Sunday, June 25, 2017

Nice trail. Hiked the newer trail and it's pretty forgiving. Great view once you get to the top but mostly wooded/ obscured until you get there. Plenty of space on the boulders up top for a nice picnic before making the trek back down. Would recommend!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

good hike still alot of snow at the summit, so be careful when hiking the last 1/4 of the trail, would definitely hike again this summer to check out the view

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Nice trail until the last section, when we went up there was a fair amount of snow and couldn't see where the rocks were under neath the snow, my fiancé and friend ended up twisting their ankles from not being able to see if there was anything under the snow or not.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A few things to keep in mind...

The stretch of road between the main road and the trailhead parking lot is not maintained during winter which means you have to add it to the hike.

Who wrote that the trail was well indicated? Maybe for summer but not for winter, when fresh snow covers the trail and you have to rely on elusive red tags to find your way around. There are not enough tags in my view, especially considering all the trail's twists and turns.

I wore spikes, my choice. I should have worn snowshoes because of all the fresh snow that had fallen the week before.

You will have to make your way through tree branches so protect your eyes with glasses and wear a watertight coat in the winter.

Anyway, I will certainly come back in the summer to enjoy the view!

hiking
Monday, October 17, 2016

Took the old trail up as I had been told that it will eliminate 1.5 hours plus there are breaks of sun to help enjoy the hike. It was quite steep, very rocky and corroded in many places. I'd rate the old trail as fairly difficult. You can't beat the view, especially during peak fall season. We descended the old trail and with the fallen leaves and wet conditions, it got slick in many areas. I was just very happy to hike this mountain as I had been visiting this area since I was a baby. If you have children or pets, I recommend the new trail as I heard it is much more moderate of a hike.

hiking
Sunday, October 16, 2016

Great views from the top but the approach is much too long for no apparent reason.

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