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Catskills Black Dome and Blackhead Loop

Difficult
 4.7 (10) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A loop trail that ascends both Black Dome and Blackhead mountains with some limited trail overlap.


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Map Key

6.2

Miles

9.9

KM

Loop

3,976' 1,212 m

High

2,195' 669 m

Low

2,245' 684 m

Up

2,247' 685 m

Down

14%

Avg Grade (8°)

54%

Max Grade (28°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife

Overview

This trail will allow you to climb the 3rd and 4th highest peaks in the Catskills and enjoy some great views.

Description

This is a great hike to get two Catskills mountains in a relatively short period. It was pretty quiet for us even on a holiday weekend. You can park right at the trailhead.

Head up the trail to the spur on your right (south). After this it is a very consistent moderate slope to the shoulder between Black Dome and Black Head. Go right (west) to the summit of Black Dome. There are a few steep spots requiring scrambling but there were plenty of good hand holds.

Black Dome is fairly flat and wooded on top (the pines give it a dark appearance from far away, hence the names). Head a little past where the true summit is for a lovely viewpoint to the south. Trace your path back to the shoulder then continue east up the clear trail to Blackhead. Again, the best views are before and after the true summit due to the pine trees. The loop part of the trail will take you down a very steep section before moderating on a lovely trail back to the parking area.

Note: you could easily add Tomas Cole Mountain onto this hike by continuing west after Black Dome. This would not add a ton of distance, but will add a good amount of elevation. If you really fancy a long hike or are backpacking, you could continue north after Blackhead along the ridge and bag Windham High Peak for another 35'er and a more complete loop.

Contacts

Shared By:

Karl W

Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 10 votes

#795

Overall
  4.7 from 10 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#15

in New York

#795

Overall
299 Views Last Month
5,667 Since Jan 22, 2017
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Photos

Black Dome Viewpoint makes for great photo opportunities.
Jan 27, 2017 near Cairo, NY
Black Dome stands in the distance from the Blackhead West Viewpoint.
Jan 27, 2017 near Cairo, NY
Heading to Black Dome
Apr 11, 2019 near Cairo, NY
Nearing the summit of Blackhead, Black Dome is visible on the right (hiker's left).
Jan 22, 2017 near Cairo, NY
The trails are all clearly marked in the Windham Blackhead Range Wilderness.
Jan 22, 2017 near Cairo, NY
Gorgeous views await from the summit of Black Dome.
Jan 24, 2017 near Cairo, NY

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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All Clear 18 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Jul 26, 2020
Mark Kuhlmann
Jan 1, 2020
Nathan Silberman
6.2mi
Sep 8, 2019
Andy Schmit
6.2mi — 15h 20m
Jul 3, 2019
Eric Milner
Continued on Thomas Cole Mountain as well 8mi — 10h 00m
May 24, 2019
caitlin ward
Slow goin down the steep backside with dogs. Awesome hike 6.8mi — 4h 00m
Feb 9, 2019
Neal Wang
Nov 4, 2018
Karin Murphy
Sep 9, 2018
Cynthia Bustos