Perkins Memorial Observatory Loop

MODERATE 56 reviews
#13 of 23 trails in

Perkins Memorial Observatory Loop is a 3.8 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Bear Mountain, New York that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, and nature trips. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 3.8 miles Elevation Gain: 971 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

running

views

wild flowers

rocky

scramble

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Bear Mt has superb views from multiple spots! The numerous rock staircases up/down are great as well. The portion back down the mountain on this route is more maintained type of trail for tourists (wider, fine-gravel type), but the climb up is pretty narrow with many rock steps. The Perkins Memorial Dr up to the mountain is closed/gated at end of November, so if you want the place to yourself, go early during the winter for some great sunrise views (unless there is snow/ice all over the rocks)

Great views but if you want any sort of seclusion you need to get here super early. The trail is overrun with tons of people – especially tourists. You also have to cross over to highways to continue on the specific trail, which doesn’t really make you feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere. If you enjoy hiking for solo trips in nature and solitude, I would recommend other trails. This is a good little work out if you’re looking for something quick, though.

hiking
3 months ago

A really nice trail mainly following the AT (white blaze markers with a small piece on blue trail) going up Bear Mountain and then climbing down the back. The new AT (second half of the hike) is also marked with white blaze. We also did a piece of the 1777w going towards doodletown which was nice and very close to the parking lot.

Beautiful day for an evening hike. Trail is well marked and offers great views of Doodletown, Bald Mountain and West Mountain and is a great place to watch the sun set.

Good trail. Quick. Nice views. Worth it. Parking lot fills early.

hiking
rocky
4 months ago

I turned this 3.9 mile hike into a 7.6 mile hike. Going back and going to get 10 miles in. Read other reviews, it is rocky but not bad. The assent on the AT to Perkins Tower is not a scramble but it is a steep stairway of rocks that brings you to the tower. The stairway of rocks makes it easier to get to the top. I really appreciate the effort put in to build the stairway, couldn’t have been easy. Blazed trails are clearly marked no issues here. Loved the hike but I would to make it longer. Besides the stairway of rocks the hike is relatively easy.

hiking
5 months ago

went counterclockwise. After we turned off the paved path by the lake, trail markers became less, then nonexistent for a while. look for a big (15 foot round standalone rock on a hill).. the trail goes right of that. steep rock scramble, but awesome views. after looping back toward tower, trail became well worn. after tower, many rock steps and more views

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

This was a very nice hike. Most of it was through forested areas, so lots of shade. Great view points, particularly west of Perkins Tower. When starting out, note the trail head is on the left side (as you come in) of the parking area. We took the clockwise route up to Perkins Tower. It is steeper on the way up with lots of rock stairs built into the trail - to me it is easier going up the steeper part than down it. The cut over from the AT to Perkins Tower is well marked with blue blazes. The "Future AT" as shown on the map has been built, so just follow the AT as you descend from Perkins Tower - it won't quite match the trail route on the map if you are following it on the app, but it is pretty close. Note, there are some port-a-sans at Perkins Tower. If it is open, climb the tower as well for more great views.

hiking
8 months ago

Almost a perfect hike: short (2.5 hours) but invigorating, with lots of payoffs in form of views (overlooks), points of interest (Perkins Tower and wildlife (squirrels, deer etc)). But the sheer number of wildflowers here in June makes this hike quite astounding, both visually and in their fragrance. Because it’s basically the “back way” up Perkins, there are points of solitude too. A bit tricky in spots as you go off and off A.T., but well designed to get best of a well maintained and traveled trail with some time to yourself close to Seven Lakes. Bravo.

hiking
8 months ago

The flowers will be AMAZING in the next week or two. They’re about 50% bloomed and the trail, stairs, and views were great. But I went after work to avoid the weekend crowd - I’m sure this is very popular at the top! The somewhat natural/made stairway up was rather difficult on the knees and seemed to keep going “for ever” but it was totally worth it at the top!

hiking
rocky
9 months ago

On the harder side of a moderate trail. Fantastic views.

hiking
Sat Feb 16 2019

Great trail! Did this one while there was a good deal of ice/snow on the ground. There were points where it was very slippery but we had YakTrax on which worked well. There are great views throughout. This is definitely a new favorite in the area.

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29 days ago

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