Whiteface Mountain Summit Trail

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Wilmington Wild Forest

Whiteface Mountain Summit Trail is a 9.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Wilmington, New York that features a great forest setting 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: 9.3 miles Elevation Gain: 3,618 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

bird watching

forest

views

muddy

rocky

snow

A moderate loop that will take you from the Wilmington Trailhead over Marble Mountain to Esther (ADK High Peak at 4239 feet) and then to the summit of Whiteface (ADK High Peak at 4867 feet). Excellent views of the surrounding valley. A very fun trail with varied terrain that can actually be accessed several other ways as well. Esther Trail is not officially maintained and can get muddy at times. The trail up Whiteface varies and includes some excellent outcrops. The only drawback to the hike is that you may end up sharing the summit with a very large crowd as the peak is also reachable by road.

hiking
7 days ago

Great day- tshirts and walking on snow. Yes- spikes still required here; snow most of the way. very few people. Tiffany if you read this- not sure what website you are looking at, but its a ski mountain and those trails are definitely closed. The hiking trails are open.

hiking
11 days ago

I see everyone hiking here. It’s actually open? I looked on the website and it says the trails are closed? Is the parking lot open? I hate to drive and not be able to hike.

12 days ago

Nice hike today, wished we had brought our micro spikes, made the climb more difficult without them. Huge change in weather almost to the top, dense fog, no view at the top.

hiking
2 months ago

I did this hike 10 days ago, it was a great hike but very steep! I started at 8am and ended at 2 and was the only one at the top! The road to drive up to the summit is closed for winter. Wasn’t icey, too much snow covering any ice

2 months ago

Challenging trail, steep most of the way up with a nice little break before the final ascent. Was socked in during my visit. I will be doing this again!!!

hiking
4 months ago

We were so grateful to start the New Year with this beautiful and challenging hike. We started from the reservoir. There was about 2-4 inches of powder covering the ice, which was perfect for our micro spikes.

hiking
icy
rocky
snow
5 months ago

Not a bad trail! We didn’t finish - thought we were in the hiking mood and turns out we weren’t (it happens) - but what we did hike was pretty nice as long as you had micro spikes handy. The whole trail was pretty much icy, but the first 1.5 miles was flat. Weather was good today, too, and no need for snow shoes. Definitely would have have a view at the top if we had finished (clear skies all day).

hiking
blowdown
muddy
rocky
scramble
snow
6 months ago

Vue magnifique et montée ardue mais qui récompense. Pour le premier tier, peu de neige environ 4°C. Près du Kilo 2.5 la première montée intense débute, ne vous décourager on parles de 1-1.5 Kilomètres. Par la suite c’est plus facile. Le deuxième tier ou la transition entre feuille et neige se fait est assez glacé. Environ 0 à -5°C. Dans le dernier tier avec le vent on parles de -10 à -15°c. Enfin arrivé au sommet les bourrasques de vents vous mordent les os. Essayer de diner à l’abris du vents car il très très froid. Nous avons adoré notre journée. La trail nous a pris 6h aller retour à compléter.

muddy
over grown
rocky
snow
6 months ago

I wanted to challenge myself since Ive been doing moderate and easy trails. The snow and winter weather definitely added an extra level of difficulty. however I was dissapointed when I got to the summit as the weather was terrible and did not permit a clear view of the surrounding area ( couldnt see 20 meters infront of me at the summit.) The trail definitely served its purpose as its weather, climate, elevation and climb provided me the challenge I looked for. i wish i would have seen the view. watch out for fallen trees, tight corners and small trails on the edge of the hill.

hiking
snow
washed out
7 months ago

Did this hike today after heavy rainfall last night. The whole trail was pretty wet and muddy but manageable. Around the middle the trail flattens out and there’s a section that’s like a pond! Almost turned back! Managed to get around it but decided to take the road back down. Great views, and really enjoyable aside from the washed out section!

hiking
muddy
scramble
snow
7 months ago

we went last weekend so october 18-20 stayed in an awesome airbnb in lake placid. gorgeous sunny day, very cold lots of snow and ice at the summit. it was very important to stay on trail toward the top because you will sink in between fallen trees and rocks hidden by the snow (you should always stay on trail because plant life) took us 4 hours to get to the summit and 3 hours down, we walked down on the road for a change of scenery. lots of up hill very little level ground and pretty narrow trails. signage isn’t great but we didn’t get lost so that’s saying something. hands down one of the most beautiful hikes i’ve ever been on definitely recommend. and as always if you find any amphibians and want to pick them up make sure you sanitized between critters! or better yet leave them be

hiking
muddy
rocky
scramble
snow
7 months ago

This was a very challenging hike. Took us roughly 9 hours to complete and logged about 11 miles. We certainly saw all four seasons during the hike. There was about 8 inches of snow at the top which made it very tough & cold. Nothing was open at the top as they had closed for the season. Elevator was closed in the tunnel and no buildings were open. This was one of the most challenging hikes I’ve done & the view was incredible.

hiking
muddy
rocky
7 months ago

Great but difficult hike! We climbed Whiteface first and then Esther! Took us about 8 hours to complete both! Beautiful day with beautiful fall views! Bring layers for the top because it gets windy and chilly up there! Feeling very accomplished afterwards.

hiking
7 months ago

Great view, but the fact people can drive up taints the experience. Steep right off at the beginning, but levels off and is easier once you get your stride going. Not much of a view from Ester, but do it quick and check it off your 46er list.

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