“This trail is short, steep, and has an amazing 360-degree view from the bald summit.”
— Mike Biolsi
Cave · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views
Challenging hike, but not too long. The view at the top will be a thrill for all ages.
The distance on this trail is only three miles to the summit, and six miles out and back. It is one of the few mountains in the 'daks that offers an amazing 360-degree view after only a few miles of hiking.
The trailhead is located across Route 3 from where you park. There appears to be a trail at the parking area, but that goes to some camping areas in the opposite direction of the mountain.
You'll see a register to sign in and red markers to follow.
Like most of the ADK trails, you start with a nice casual hike on low grades through hardwood forest. The trail crosses a few brooks, has a small wooden bridge, and even some wood planks to hike on in the first few miles.
At 1.5 miles, you'll see the mountain directly in front of you as you begin to climb some moderate elevation. At 2.0 miles, you'll begin climbing a very steep set of rock stairs all of the way to the summit. You'll also have a few rock scrambles and some amazing views of rock ledges hanging over the trail.
Just shy of the summit, the trail becomes open rock and is marked by yellow paint on the rocks. Be sure to follow the markers to avoid erosion. The hike is not long from here, and you'll soon reach the summit clad with three survey markers on it. The summit views are amazing in all four seasons. The wind can be very strong, so be prepared with extra layers.
You may also follow the yellow-blazed trail beyond the summit to find a plaque dedicated to the Hermit of Ampersand.