Nippletop and Dial Mountain Loop

HARD 18 reviews

Nippletop and Dial Mountain Loop is a 13.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Keene Valley, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from April until October.

DISTANCE
13.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4465 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

A great loop hike that descends a long ridge with fantastic views of the Great Range while also ascending two 46ers. This is a great 15 mile loop hike that will take you down a beautiful Lake Road towards Lower Ausable Lake and then climb to the top of two 4,000 foot peaks. From Nippletop you will have great views towards the Great Range over Colvin and descending the ridge over Dial and then the smaller Bear Den you will also get glimpses of Dix Mountain before returning back to the trailhead.

backpacking
2 days ago

Super awesome, challenging hike. Granted, we did it with the intention of camping, so the weight of our packs made for an additional challenge. Going up Bear Den to Dial to Nippletop felt like the best way to go, getting the steep incline out of the way, and camping in along Elk Pass, so that all we had for our second day was the descent.

We could have done it all in a day if we didn't have huge packs, and if we did it again, we would do the loop as a day hike.

The views were 100% worth it, but the trail conditions were super muddy and slick.

hiking
6 days ago

Incredible hike -- but so steep until the top of Dial

hiking
19 days ago

Dial and Nippletop was a nice fun day, lots of uphill, and a dozen great views. We started by heading up over Bear Den Mountain. Lots and lots of bear tracks so keep a watchful eye. No markers that I could find for Dial or Nippletop. But the views were great. From the intersection near Nippletop, it says .2 miles, just keep in mind its a long .2mile. The day I went it was extremely muddy. Heading down Elk pass was steep but fairly easy. Once getting back onto Lake Rd it was an easy return. Overall time was 12 hours from car to car.

hiking
27 days ago

hiking
27 days ago

hiking
28 days ago

Reasonably challenging hike. I made two wrong turns as the GPS trace witnesses: one in the beginning - started on a wrong trail (to Noonmark) and then after the beaver ponds. Great views from both Nippletop and Dial; from the Noonmark shoulder too. I have done it counterclockwise: steep climb to Nippletop and then gradual descent for the rest of the loop.

1 month ago

This is a long one, and it was tougher than we thought. We did the loop and walked the road back, which was surprisingly difficult on the knees after all of that hiking. Bring lots of water and do the loop!

hiking
1 month ago

Did it clockwise. Steady climb right from lake road. Not very rocky. U get to Dial 1st. Then go down a bit a further up to Nippletop. Further on the loop the next mile is the thoughest as u hit big slides of rocks and a good decline. Easy after.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

This hike was the real deal. I have hiked 18 out of the 46 ADK high peaks. We hiked this counterclockwise, Nippletop to Dial and I would highly recommend this route. I have 2 bad knees, so the decent was very strenuous for me. The view from Nippletop was outstanding! If you don't want to be a 46er, skip Dial mountain, you're not missing much.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
10 months ago

I was a beginner hiker when I climbed these mountains and although it was challenging at times, I had a blast. The summits were well worth the challenge. It took us about 12 hours, including the hour break at the summit. Bring plenty of water, we brought 3 liters and a few water bottles and ran out.

11 months ago

Long challenging trail with amazing views. So worth it!

11 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Please Note: This hike is NOT dog friendly. In fact you can not take your dog on this hike at all and will be stopped by the rangers at the Lake Road trailhead. I drove 300+ miles to get there only to be told this.