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A challenging loop of Sugarloaf Mt., starting with a strenuous climb to the summit followed by a gradual, wooded tour.

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1,254' 382 m


523' 159 m


1,180' 360 m


1,187' 362 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (31°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Open year-round, sunrise to sunset.


This loop makes for a great workout with rewarding visits to a few of the best viewpoints in the area. Luckily, this route, which combines the White Trail (Mountain Loop Trail), Blue Trail (Northern Peaks Trail), Orange Trail (Sunrise Trail) and Red Trail (Monadnock Trail) front-loads the biggest effort within the first mile and a half with a tough climb up to the summit.

From the high point, the loop continues gradually downward to the northern end of the property through secluded woods. After a visit to the White Rocks, the loop heads around the western boundary back to the main entrance and parking area.

Need to Know

Entrance gates are closed during off-hours so plan accordingly if you've parked within the property. Trails are open to equestrians. Sections can be fairly rocky and require careful footing - trekking poles or high-ankle boots may be helpful.


There are multiple parking areas in the southern half of the property, some closer to the summit, but this hike shows a complete loop from the main entrance at Comus Road. From the entrance gates, head north on the road toward the White Trail (Mountain Loop Trail). This marks the start of tough but relatively short climb to the summit.

At the first intersection, turn left onto the East View to White Trail connector to find the Orange Trail (Sunrise Trail), which continues to climb north. The next intersection is just below the high point. Turn left (west) onto the Red Trail (Monadnock Trail) as it heads the last few hundred feet toward the rocky crag at the summit. Given the breathtaking views and nearby parking, don't be surprised or discouraged when you find a good number of people here. The beauty of this hike is that the most challenging and busiest section is now over.

From the summit, head back the way you came, this time continuing on the Red Trail (Monadnock Trail) (stay left) to the north. You'll be heading north/northeast down the ridge past a couple of intersections. Once you're on the Blue Trail (Northern Peaks Trail), though, you should be able to follow the blue blazes for the majority of the loop to the north. Check the Hiking Project mobile app for navigation help.

Around the three-mile mark, you'll arrive at a five-way intersection with the Yellow Trail (Saddleback Horse Trail), Blue Trail (Northern Peaks Trail), and Purple Trail. Stay on the Blue Trail (Northern Peaks Trail) to head west over a brief climb to the White Rocks. This is a great spot for a snack or lunch break as the crowds you may have encountered at the Sugarloaf summit should have dissipated. At White Rocks, you're well over half way.

Continue south on the Blue Trail (Northern Peaks Trail) with a bit more of a gradual descent before making the final up-and-over climb around the countors of Sugarloaf on the White Trail (Mountain Loop Trail) back to the start.

As all trails at Sugarloaf Mountain can be traveled in either direction, this hike can be done in reverse or adapted to accommodate groups of different ages and/or abilities.

Flora & Fauna

Oak, tulip poplar, eastern hemlock, deer, fox, rabbits, raccoons, owls, turkeys, hawks, songbirds. Be cautious of copperheads and timber rattlesnakes.


Land Manager: Stronghold, Inc.

Shared By:

Zander Göpfert

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 10 votes


  4.4 from 10 votes
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in Maryland


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3,383 Since Nov 6, 2019
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Current Trail Conditions

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Apr 7, 2024
Ben T
Jul 22, 2023
Adrian Vega
May 20, 2023
John Rawley
8.1mi — 3h 00m
Aug 14, 2022
Amanda La Forge
May 30, 2022
Ryan Curran
Jun 1, 2021
Jon Hacklstein
Apr 8, 2021
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Jan 4, 2021
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