This route is a classic Adirondack route, summiting a 46'er and featuring some of the most rugged trail in the area. Mt. Marcy is one of the more famous peaks, and those wishing to complete a trip along the Great Range won't want to miss this peak.
Starting from the Four Corners intersection with the Calamity Brook Trail
, Elk Lake to Mount Marcy Trail
, and the Mount Skylight Trail
, you'll quickly gain elevation. Like most trails in the area, there will be a few boggy spots where the trail traverses flat portions. Muddy boots are a must, unless you happen to be visiting during an especially dry year. The beginning of the trail is heavily forested, and there are plenty of small pines that line the trail.
As you continue on your way to the summit, you'll come across a variety of rock slabs, many of them wet, that must be navigated. These portions are steep, tricky, and can play with the head of even the most intrepid hiker. The going will likely be slow as finding the best way to negotiate tricky sections will take some time. As you gain elevation on the steep trail some amazing views will begin to open as the trees thin out. Eventually, you'll be completely clear of trees on a final, huge rock slab. Try to look ahead to the next cairn to keep going in a logical direction as the rock slab more or less masks a clear trail. The slab is fairly steep, but you can hike right up it if you stick to a good path.
However, once you reach the mostly bald summit of Mount Marcy, your arduous journey will be well worthwhile. Just make sure to dress in layers! Even when it's a bit muggy lower down, the summit of Marcy sees brisk winds.