Explore the most popular wildlife trails near Phoenicia with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The fire tower is a great reward at the end of the trail, but at some places there are slippery and/or loose rocks that make the way back down challenging. No plateaus or view points anywhere except at the top. Only a few very steep moments. With many water breaks and a 15 minute rest at the fire tower we clocked in at around 5 hours out and back. Best part was that it is mostly shaded the whole time which made the length bearable. Watch your footing as we did see a baby copperhead on the trail (surely mom was close by).

We completed the Slide-Cornell-Wittenberg out-and-back starting from the West. Mostly an uphill hike on the way to Slide Mountain. Between Slide mountain and Cornell Mountain there are some rock scrambles and climbing that is required. Overall, a really nice trail with some great views as long as the clouds don't roll in.

It was a challenge and there was a lot of lovely fauna to see including a fresh water spring. Nice views at the top and when you’re done you’ll feel like you had a good day in nature and have gotten some great exercise too.

hiking
14 days ago

Very wet trail and top of fire tower is locked

Great challenging hike with a little bit of climbing required. Done in 5.5 hours. Its one of those hikes which make your legs buzz when you lay down to sleep that night.

tougher then we thought. rain made the hike more technical. very nice view from the fire tower.

17 days ago

Trail was harder than expected. Maybe should be rated medium. Highway noise and many people on the trail. Steep, uncleared trees to climb over and many loose rocks - be careful. Still an ok hike

It was a hard hike but I still did it

Beautiful view from the top went to Cornell and back outstanding views of Ashokan from Wittenberg and Cornell had 2 beautiful view one of Wittenberg and the other of slide great hike very difficult. As a bonus saw a porcupine on bruins causeway great day hike!!

This was a challenging hike. You start with a hike up to the sign in then continue climb. It levels off for about a mile before turning in to attack the main climb. There is some awesome rock climbing on the way up that I loved. It says you can bring a dog on the trail but unless your backpacking him up the rock climb I don't see how any dog could make it. The view from Wittenberg is AWESOME well worth the effort!! Cornell not so much, but the crack is fun to climb.

hiking
24 days ago

Lovely hike. Longer than 2 miles if you continue past the first view point. Came across a family of black bears along the trail (about 75% through the loop).

Beautiful views and fun trek through the mountains.

Hiked 2 days ago. Trail is a well worn old jeep road so not exactly a nice trail, but good footing. Grade is mild to moderate the entire way. You can make better time than “book time “ due to trail conditions. Decent views from fire tower stairs (cabin closed)

hiking
1 month ago

This hike is not easy. Even the sign at the trail head says it’s a serious hike. My husband and I didn’t find it that much easier than Giants Ledge. The trail isn’t very well maintained, lots of trees to climb under or over and you slip slide down the mountain. Also it’s about three miles not 2.1.

This was such a great hike! We overnighted in between Cornell and Slide and it was tough with the elevation gain + big backpacks but so worth it for those views!

Wittenberg has lookout ledge. This was a challenging hike but well worth it.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike! Definitely should not be characterized as "Hard" though would be tough for a novice hiker or young kids. Clearly marked trail, great views from the fire tower. The Tower was locked today but can still see across Catskill Park from the top. Will go again!

hiking
2 months ago

Strenuous hike due to consistent incline, but somewhat too straight-forward. The view at the summit is basically nonexistent unless you climb the fire tower. When I arrived, there were too many clouds to see anything. After spending some time at the top of the tower, the clouds cleared and a nice view opened up. However, I have seen many better views from more interesting trails. Many, many, gnats as well made it impossible to stand still.

hiking
3 months ago

Fun hike. Lots of things to see on the way up, leantos, etc. did it as part of the fire tower challenge, the tower was locked but you could still climb up the stairs

hiking
3 months ago

Climbed yesterday in beautiful weather approx low 60’s. Very dry hike with a few patches of snow near the summit. Some cool shelters on the way in case hikers wanted to stay the night. Seemed long but was beat from a previous hike. 4 hour hike with awesome views at the top. Fire tower not in great condition and was closed at top!

hiking
4 months ago

Probably one of the easiest mountains I have done I have NO idea when it’s listed as hard ! Trail had minimal snow towards the top but spikes and shoes are no longer needed ! Beautiful views

Hiked on 3/24/2018 - Trail conditions - packed snow all the way up. We started at 8am (25-30 degrees) so the snow was packed. Spikes all the way up.

Trail started off steep but eventually leveled off for about 1-1.5 miles. We reached few zigzags and it became steep for about a mile before the summit. About 5-6 times it felt like we were almost on summit, but it was a no go/false summit. West wings were strong and made it cold on this section. But the summit/terrace was blocked/calm.

Hike to Cornell was about 15-20 min. Cornell crack was full of snow and fun to climb up/down. There was no dangerous cliffs or ledges where it gets sketchy.

We didn't use snow shoes at all BUT on the way down the snow became slushy and soft. Some post holing.

Note: there is at least 3-4 feet of snow still on the mountain and valleys.

Summit view? One of the best in the Catskills. It was a clear and sunny day and it was simply amazing up there.

PS. The mountain will kick your butt. Not as "straight up" as the Whites but certainly as painful in the end.

3 hours up to Wittenberg, 20 min to Cornell and back, 2 hours down

Great trail!

Hiked it on 11/10. It was 14 degrees and one of the first (light) snow falls of the year. Amazing hike, one of my favorite. Bruins Causeway between Wittenberg and Cornell was extremely unique

hiking
8 months ago

Great hike took 3 hrs round trip First 2 tenths of the hike is the hardest Weather was 30degrees dry trail no mud

hiking
9 months ago

It was a brisk day 11/11/17 first ones on the trail that day
Pleasant hike still not sure why it's rated hard
The terrain is easy to navigate made to the tower in 2 hours and 20 min that included a pit stop to the first lean to
I would DEFINATELY do this hike again

Hiked this back in March before the springtime thaw. Getting closer to the summit was extremely challenging as ice and snow came into view. Beautiful view at the summit.

Beautiful view from the top! Definitely intense but doable

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