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Buck Mountain

In 1933, a fire tower on Buck Mountain was established on private lands between Long Lake and Tupper Lake. Today, thanks to a generous easement and hard work by a lot of people, the tower on Buck Mountain is open to the public via a 1.2 mile trail to the summit.

How to get there

From the intersection of Route 30 and Route 28N in Long Lake, follow Route 30 north toward Tupper Lake for 7 miles. Turn left onto Sabattis Circle Road (sometimes referred to just as Circle Road on maps) and continue for a little over 2 miles to a large parking lot on the right. There is room for many vehicles.

By the numbers

  • Trail distance: 1.2 miles one way; 2.4 miles out and back
  • Elevation gain: 500 feet
  • Summit elevation: 2400 feet


The trail begins in the back corner of the parking lot. Since it is a brand new trail, it is soft underfoot. In the first half of the trail, several bridges and wooden boards will help you traverse wet and muddy areas. Closer to the summit, the terrain starts to get steeper. A series of wooden steps and stairs, and rock staircases, assist with these sections. Buck Mountain's summit is completely wooded, so there are no views from the top, unless you climb the 60-foot tall fire tower. From the tower cab, views of the William C. Whitney Wilderness stretch out before you, as well as views of many other fire tower summits in Hamilton County.

Buck Mountain in winter

Due to the steeper terrain near the summit, traction is highly recommended when the trail is icy or snowy. This would be an excellent beginner snowshoe hike, but is not suited for cross-country skiing given the serious of ladders and stairs near the summit.

Trail information

This historic fire tower and hiking trail is located on private land owned by Cedar Heights Timber, LLC. The public is invited to enjoy the hiking trail and fire tower, but please observe the following rules.

  • Plan ahead and prepare
  • Please stay on marked trail
  • If you carry it in, carry it out. Please do not litter
  • No campfires  
  • No overnight camping
  • Leash all dogs
  • No public hunting, trapping, or fishing
  • No motorized vehicles
  • Dispose of waste properly
  • Leave what you find
  • Respect wildlife
  • Be considerate of others

Adirondack Interpretive Center at Newcomb

The Adirondack Interpretive Center (AIC) at Newcomb offers 236 acres of environmental education, along with over 3.5 miles of scenic, surfaced trails complemented by indoor exhibits, lectures, films, and naturalist-led guided walks. There is a picnic area located on the grounds but the benches provided at numerous overlooks along their trail system are ideal lunch spots. 

*For current hours and seasonal updates, please visit the AIC's website.

How to get there

Take Exit 29 off of Interstate 87 and turn west on to Blue Ridge Road heading toward Newcomb. After ~18 miles, turn right on Route 28N and drive through the Town of Newcomb. The AIC driveway will be on the right on the western edge of town.


The AIC trails offer a variety of terrain and habits including forest, lakeshore, and wetland. All trails begin at the AIC building and start by following the Rich Lake Trail (green markers). Rich Lake Trail is an easy 0.6-mile trail, perfect for a warm-up with views of Rich Lake and Goodnow Mountain. Two overlooks along the lake provide for photo opportunities and wildlife viewing. The Peninsula Trail (red markers) is a 0.9-mile loop which starts from the Rich Lake Trail and offers more views of Rich Lake. There are beautiful old-growth hemlocks on this trail and a long boardwalk across a marsh dominated by cranberry and button bush. The 1.0-mile Sucker Brook Trail (blue markers), also accessed from the Rich Lake Trail, follows the outlet of Rich Lake and is a great trail for spotting wildlife. This trail follows the route felled trees traversed during the Hudson River log-driving days. The R.W. Sage Jr. Memorial Trail (yellow markers) is a 1.1-mile loop which starts and ends on the Sucker Brook Trail. This trail features stands of pure hardwood forests and a boardwalk through a seasonal wetland offering visitors a true deep-woods feel. From the Sage Trail you can take the 0.5-mile Santanoni Preserve Connector Trail (DEC red markers) that leads visitors through NYS DEC lands to the Newcomb Lake Road Trail. Looking for something a little more challenging? The Goodnow Mountain trailhead is just 1.7 miles from the AIC. A 2-mile hike to the top of the mountain followed by a climb up the stairs of a fire tower will be rewarded by a spectacular view of the central Adirondacks. 

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

In winter, the center loans snowshoes to visitors who wish to explore their snow-covered trails. A few well-marked alterations to the trails in winter provide for easy to moderate snowshoeing. Trails are also open for the use of experienced cross-country skiers; the terrain makes it a little too challenging for the novice skier. Only the Peninsula Trail is closed to skiing. Winter is an amazing time to be on the trails and creates a completely different experience. Winter trails are an excellent opportunity for discovery since animal tracks are easy to see in the snow. Extend your snowshoe or ski trip by heading over to the Camp Santanoni Preserve via the Santanoni Preserve Connector Trail. 


This complex offers a variety of habitats including old-growth hemlock, cedar swamp, conifer, and northern hardwood, as well as near lake, river, stream, and wetland environments. More than 100 species of birds have been sighted, including warblers, thrushes, flycatchers, Common Loon, and Great Blue Heron. Birds of prey include Bald Eagle, Osprey, and owls. Woodpeckers are abundant so you might hear them before you see them.


The AIC is part of the NYS Birding Trail. This trail is not a physical trail, but a "connection" between outstanding birding locations in regions across the state.

Roosevelt Truck Trail

The Roosevelt Truck Trail is a perfect place for birding, cross-country skiing, hiking, snowshoeing, and accessible camping. It is surrounded by boreal habitat, so you really feel like you are the in the middle of wilderness!

How to get there

There are two trailheads for the Roosevelt Truck Trail, making it possible to do a thru-trip if you have two cars available. The trail runs between Blue Ridge Road and Route 28N. A map is available here. GPS coordinates are available on the NYSDEC website and may be more helpful finding this location since there is no trailhead sign.

To access from Blue Ridge Road, travel west on Blue Ridge Road from North Hudson. Follow this road 15 miles to the location on the right. The entrance is on a curve and can be difficult to spot, but there is a a metal gate and stone wall on each side of the trail. There's room for 2 cars to park on the side of the road.

To access from Route 28N, travel east on Route 28N from Newcomb. Cross over the railroad tracks, and then in another 0.4 miles, you'll reach a road that leads north of the highway (it looks like driveway). Turn here, and park in the woods, but do not block the gate. Again, there is room for 2 cars.

By the numbers

  • The trail extends 2.0 miles from end to end


This boreal habitat is perfect for finding unique birds! Black-backed Woodpecker, Boreal Chickadees, and Canada Jays are present year-round, but in warmer months, there are warblers aplenty! This is one of the few known locations Cape May Warblers nest in the Adirondacks. Read more about birding here in our blog.

Hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing

The trail has minimal elevation gain, only going uphill slightly in a few places.


There are two accessible tent sites located along this trail. Access to the sites is from the Route 28N trailhead with a Motorized Access Permit for People with Disabilities (MAPPWD) permit. This is available from the DEC. Four wheel drive pick-ups or other high clearance vehicles are recommended. The tent sites have a firm, level surface with accessible picnic tables and accessible privies.

Mount Adams

Mount Adams is a serious climb but for those who tackle it, the views and the hike are very rewarding. The summit features at 47-foot steel fire tower, used in its heyday as a tool in the forest fire prevention effort by New York State. It is no longer used to detect fires, but makes for a fine hiking destination. 

How to get there

Follow I-87 north for to the North Hudson Exit, #29. From here follow Boreas Road west toward Newcomb. Continue nearly 18 miles to Tahawus Road on your right. Continue on Tahawus Road for 6.5 miles. Here you will reach a bridge over the Hudson River on your right. Stay left on Upper Works Road. You will pass by the McIntyre Blast Furance and the Santanoni trailhead before arriving at your destination 3.0 miles from the intersection of Tahawus and Upper Works roads. 

By the numbers

  • Distance: 2.6 miles, one way
  • Elevation gain: 1,800 feet
  • Mountain Elevation: 3,520 feet


For the first mile, the trail is rather mellow, but crosses or comes near the Hudson River and Lake Jimmy. Be advised it may be muddy here. At one mile, is the old fire tower observer's cabin and storage building. Follow the well-worn path in front of the cabin. Just after a short rise, around 1.1 miles, the trail hangs left into the woods. (The trail to the right goes to Flowed Lands via Hanging Spear Falls.) A stream is crossed at 1.6 miles and the climbing hasn't been terribly steep until this point. Between here and the summit, the trail gets much steeper, sometimes rough and rocky. The trail levels off at 2.5 miles and finally reaches the tower at 2.6 miles. There are no/ very limited views from the ground; enjoy views of the High Peaks from the tower cab or stairs.

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

Skiing is not recommended for this trail due to steepness of the terrain but advanced snowshoers might enjoy the challenge. The trailhead should be accessible in winter.

The Dix Range

The views from the Dix Range are some of the best in the Northeast! With five different mountains, this traverse offers something rugged and adventurous for hikers. This range includes five of the 46 High Peaks: Macomb, Grace Peak, Carson Peak, Hough, and Dix Mountain. 

This is a rugged hike and we highly recommended hikers use a map and compass (and guide book) or hire a local guide. The terrain is steep and there are exposed sections. And at over 15-miles, this loop covers a great distance with lots of elevation gains and descents. Hiking these mountains all together in a loop is the preferred option. One important thing to note: expect for the trails leading up to Dix Mountain, there are no official trails in this Range. Most of it is traversed via herd paths. Hikers should be prepared to navigate the backcountry with use of map and compass.

The Dix Range by the numbers

Dix is the 6th High Peak, at 4857 ft.

Macomb is the 21st High Peak, at 4405 ft.

Hough is the 23rd High Peak, at 4400 ft.

Carson Peak (formally South Dix) is the 37th High Peak, at 4060 ft.

Grace Peak (formerly East Dix) is the 42nd High Peak, at 4012 ft.

How to get there

The following descriptions describe hiking the Dix Range from the Elk Lake trailhead. To get there, take Exit 29 on I-87 and follow Blue Ridge Road to the west, toward Newcomb. Continue for 4-miles to Elk Lake Road on the right. (There is a sign for the Elk Lake Lodge.) Follow this road to the hiker parking, near the end.


From the parking lot at Elk Lake Lodge, follow a very well used marked trail to the Slide Brook campsites and lean-to. After crossing Slide Brook, go right and up through a campsite to access the very plain (in most conditions) herd-path that proceeds high above the brook through a peaceful forest before descending slightly to the base of the slide. The slide is mostly rubble, scree, and loose sand. It's very steep making for even harder footing, especially if descending. The upper portion of the slide is a bit tough to exit but once you do, you will be back in the trees for a bit further to the summit. Once above the slide, the summit is still a steep climb through the forest, but not all that far away. The views from Macomb are quite nice, but only in one direction back toward and over Elk Lake. The herd path to South Dix heads over the summit area and down the ridge.

South Dix is the next mountain in the Dix Range loop. Keep in mind, this can only be climbed in combination with other mountains in the range; there is no direct trail or herd path. South Dix has a wooded summit with limited views, but excellent views can be had from the south shoulder, which is on the route from Macomb.

Next up is Grace Peak (formally East Dix). Grace Peak is not directly on herd path loop for the Dix Range; it's a bid of an outlier. That said, it's only a short jaunt over to it's summit. Remember still, while the paths are relatively plain, there are no markers on this route. The summit is a mix of open rock and trees. A large boulder marks the true summit.

Following a visit to Grace Peak, hikers continue on the loop to Hough (pronounced "huff"). Hough isn't the biggest mountain in the range, but it does offer some unique and mind blowing views of the area. Hough is possibly the most memorable of the five peaks in the Dix Range. Hough is one of the tougher sections in the range with tight herd-path conditions and rock scrambling to boot.

From Hough, descend steeply into a col between a sub-summit called "Pough" and Dix Mountain. It's another steep climb to the summit of Dix, where hikers are greeted with open views of the surrounding area. From Dix, hikers can descent back to the Elk Lake parking lot via the Beckhorn Trail or Hunter's Pass. Hunter's Pass is a longer trail but slightly less steep than the Beckhorn. After a long day on the trail, most hikers prefer to take the Beckhorn Trail, which is marked, along with Hunter's Pass. Eventually the trail levels out, and hiking along a flatter section will be a welcomed break for your knees. Keep in mind, though, this section may be muddy.

Read more on our blog here: The Dix Range Traverse.

Dix Range in winter

This route in the winter can be very challenging. There is a good chance it will not be broken out and hikers should be prepared to expend extra energy hiking through deep powder. In addition to winter conditions, parking is also a difference for hiking in this season. The lot at the end of Elk Lake Road is closed and hikers will need to park at Clear Pond, which is located 2-miles from the the trailhead, adding 4-miles to the trip RT. 


Along the trail from the Elk Lake parking area to Dix Pond, look for eight primitive campsites and the Slide Brook and Lillian Brook lean-tos.

Camping between 3,500 feet and 4,000 feet is limited to designated campsites. Camping above 4,000 feet is prohibited.


Two mountains in this range have a very interesting history, and names to boot! East Dix was renamed to Grace Peak recently in commemoration of Grace Hudowalski, who was the first woman to climb the 46 High Peaks. Grace became Forty-Sixer #9 August 22, 1937 on Esther. She worked for New York State to promote tourism and devoted the rest of her time to advocate the importance of stewardship, of protecting the mountains and of maintaining trails adequately. She was a founding member of the Adirondack Forty-Sixers and served as the Club’s first President (1948-1951) and Historian until 1995. South Dix is in the process of being renamed Carson Peak, in commemoration of Russell M.L. Carson, a charter member and past president of the Adirondack Mountain Club. He is the author of "Peaks and People of the Adirondacks," the first authoritative history of Adirondack mountains, their naming, and their climbing history.

Blue Ledges

This is a remarkable hike in a truly unique area!

Getting there

To get here from the intersection of Route 9 and Hoffman Road in Schroon Lake, follow Hoffman Road (CR24). Continue on CR24, which eventually turns into Irishtown Road. Take a right onto O’Neill Road just over 11 miles from Route 9 and a left onto Longs Hill Road (CR24A). This will bring you to Route 28N in Minerva in roughly 2 miles. Take a right onto Route 28N for 2.5 miles to Northwoods Club Road on the left. Follow Northwoods Club Road for 6.5 miles to the Blue Ridge Trailhead parking on the right. 


Blue Ledges extends 2.1 miles from the trailhead to the rock ledges on the northern rim of the Hudson Gorge. Follow the trail around the east end of Huntley Pond. Look for the blue DEC markers. At the river there is a small sandy place for wading and viewing. At the end of the trail are cliffs known as the Blue Ledges. There are many boulders at this right angle bend which put on a fine show, depending on water levels.


This is an easy, well-marked trail and recommended for snowshoeing! It is a wonderful snowshoe destination, mainly because it freezes up the wet early stages of the trail as you pass by Huntley Pond. You won’t have to worry about any major icy conditions on this one, as the trail never gets too steep. The ice formations on the cliffs and in the Hudson River are quite interesting. Be sure to bring your camera along for the ride. As a reminder: snowshoeing is a beloved winter pasttime; it can provide access to areas not seen by most in the summer. Since the Hudson is a swift moving river, we do not recommend that you step onto the ice that forms on the river. It is a dangerous activity to cross frozen water bodies.


At this location the Hudson River will require an easy to moderate hike of 2.5 miles each way to reach it. Once at the river, the fishing is quite good and you can work your way up and down the beach areas to access eddies, flat calm waters, and rapids. The shore is lined and dotted with boulders that work perfectly as platforms to fish from. This is also a great area for fly fishing. The pool at the base of the ledges is quite deep, allowing you to fish the cooler waters as well.  

Fish species types: brook trout, brown trout, rainbow trout 

Special regulations: always follow state fishing regulations and be sure to pick up a NYS Freshwater Fishing Guide at your local outfitters or regional NYSDEC office. 

Center Pond Trail

Hit the trail and explore this lovely trail in the quiet woods of the Adirondack Hub. A seldom-visited trail, you'll experience older trail infrastructure like bog bridging. Take care to avoid unmarked side trails that may lead to nearby private property.

How to get there

Take Exit 29 off of Interstate 87 and follow Boreas Road west toward Newcomb. Continue to Route 28N, take a left and head toward Minerva. Continue for just under 10.5 miles to the Hewitt Pond trailhead on the left.

By the numbers

  • The trail takes you 3.3 miles one way, with a total elevation gain of just over 600 feet. 


Center Pond Trail leaves the Hewitt Pond Trail 3.1 miles south of the trailhead and extends 0.2 mile to the shore of Center Pond. About 2 miles in you'll reach the top of a small pass between two low peaks. The trail descends 100 feet to the pond in the last 0.1 mile.


This hike makes for an excellent snowshoe.

Stony Pond Trail

Stony Pond Trail is part of an intricate network of pond trails in the Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest. The pond itself is 1.8 miles from the trailhead. There it intersects with the Hewitt Pond Trail.

A lean-to near the shore of Stony Pond provides views of Green Mountain. The trail continues for just over a mile more along the shores of Little Sherman Pond and Big Sherman Pond to the southern shore of Big Sherman Pond.

How to get there

Take Exit 29 off of Interstate 87 and follow Boreas Road west toward Newcomb. Continue to Route 28N, take a left and head toward Minerva. Continue for just under 10.5 miles to the trailhead on the left.


From the trailhead the path climbs slightly before descending to a new bridge overlooking a wetland. As you approach Stony Pond you will have a beautiful brook babbling to your left with small cascades that produce a wonderful sound.

To continue on to Center Pond, take a left at the picnic table and cross the outlet. The trail here continues through a lush forest over rolling terrain to an even lovelier backcountry pond. There is a 0.2-mile spur to Center Pond. Continuing straight leads to the Hewitt Pond Road trailhead, 3.1 miles away. 

  • Elevation gain one way: 360 feet
  • Distance to the end of Big Sherman Pond: 2.8 miles


There is a lean-to and a picnic table at the pond, which offers views of Green Mountain.

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

This is a good length for a pretty snowshoe that can be completed in a day. The trail continues as a designated snowmobile trail only beyond the ponds, as it crosses private lands.


This is a great trail which winds through Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest. Around Stony Pond, Big and Little Sherman, and the Brook Falls Yurts.

Ungroomed, backcountry, trail.

Lean-to at Stony Pond, great lunch destination. Services in Minerva.

Round Pond from Sharp Bridge State Campground

This hike is a magical one as it leads you to an attractive pond and through a beautiful forest filled with wildflowers!

Getting there

To get here, take Exit 29 off of Interstate 87, turn right and then turn left on Route 9 to follow it north. Continue to the Sharp Bridge State Campground, which will be on the right. There is parking near the entrance.  

By the numbers

  • Elevation gain: 750 feet
  • Distance round trip: 6.8 miles 


From the parking area, locate Schroon Brook to the right and head down to it. Follow it upstream to the main trail. The hike now is a magical one as it leads you to a climb up the saddle between Clap and Greenbough Mountains, then descend towards East Mill Flow. You then hike above East Mill Flow to an intersection at 3.25 miles. At this intersection you can head straight to the edge of the Round Pond and outstanding views from a rocky location.

Snowshoeing & cross-country skiing

A long trek, but not very demanding in terms of terrain. This route, as well as the car-to-car option connecting to the Ensign Pond eastern trailhead, are great options for a cross-country ski. 


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