We are looking at wintery conditions in the Adirondacks this weekend. Some damage can be found on a couple of the trails thanks to recent blowdown from heavy winds, and there are other notices you’ll want to check out before your weekend hiking trip.
- Crown Point: Fri 27° and partly cloudy, Sat 35° and mostly sunny, Sun 40° and cloudy
- Indian Lake: Fri 19° and partly cloudy, Sat 30° and mostly sunny, Sun 36° and cloudy
- Lake George: Fri 33° and mostly sunny, Sat 38° and mostly sunny, Sun 43° and mostly cloudy
- Lake Placid: Fri 16° and partly cloudy, Sat 28° and partly cloudy, Sun 35° and cloudy
- Malone: Fri 23° and partly cloudy, Sat 31° and mostly sunny, Sun 40° and partly cloudy
- North Creek: Fri 20° and partly cloudy, Sat 31° and mostly sunny, Sun 36° and cloudy
- Saranac Lake: Fri 19° and partly cloudy, Sat 30° and partly cloudy, Sun 37° and mostly cloudy
- Speculator: Fri 18° and partly cloudy, Sat 31° and mostly cloudy, Sun 35° and cloudy
- Ticonderoga: Fri 22° and partly cloudy, Sat 29° and mostly sunny, Sun 35° and cloudy
- Tupper Lake: Fri 19° and partly cloudy, Sat 30° and mostly sunny, Sun 37° and mostly cloudy
The weather is significantly colder than last week, although it’s looking like a dry weekend with no rain forecasted.
According to the DEC, temperatures will be below freezing in most areas throughout the weekend, except in lower elevations where temperatures may get above freezing on Sunday afternoon. There may be snow on the ground.
Dress appropriately for the weather with layers of noncotton clothing, gloves, a hat, and bring a headlamp or flashlight on all hikes. Bring extra batteries for the flashlight and never rely on your cell phone as a flashlight.
Weather conditions can change quickly and you should always carry extra clothing, equipment, and supplies in case of an unanticipated overnight stay.
Temperatures will of course be colder and winds stronger at the summits. Wear a jacket or coat that blocks the wind when on summits or other exposed areas.
Trails are currently a mixture of mud, water, snow, and ice. Wet or icy leaves can be very slippery; use caution when walking on leaves, particularly on steep sections of trail. Wear proper footwear, including traction devices.
Due to recent high winds, you can expect to encounter blowdown (fallen or hanging trees, limbs, and branches).
Remember to walk through the mud and water and not around it to protect trailside vegetation.
The regular big game hunting season is currently open. Many small game and waterfowl hunting seasons are open or will be open soon. Hikers should remain aware that they may encounter hunters bearing firearms or archery equipment while out on the trails.
Please remember these are fellow outdoor recreationists who have a legal right to participate in these activities. Hiking accidents involving non-hunters are extremely rare.
Seasonal Access Roads
Seasonal access roads consist of dirt, sand, gravel, and/or stone and typically have a rough surface. Four-wheel drive trucks, SUVs, or other high clearance vehicles are recommended for these roads.
Some seasonal roads have been opened for the big game hunting season. These roads may close before the end of hunting season if snow accumulations warrant it.
Practice Leave No Trace
When out and about hiking and camping please abide by the Seven Principles of Leave No Trace.
A large tree has fallen on the lean-to on the Mr. Van Ski Trail causing severe damage. The lean-to is now unsafe and unusable. The DEC is working with partners to evaluate the extent of the damage and the requirements and timing of repairs.
Several sections of the Phelps Trail contain extensive amount of blowdown. Please use caution when hiking around this area. The high water bridge over Slide Mountain Brook between the Garden Trailhead Parking Area and Johns Brook Lodge on this has been replaced by the Adirondack Mountain Club Trail Crew.
Blowdown has been cleared from the Blueberry Horse Trail between Calkins Creek Horse Trail and Ward Brook Horse Trail in the Western High Peaks. The trail has been “brushed out” (trailside vegetation has been trimmed). The trail is once again passable to horses and riders, however, riders should take care near drainages and several stream crossings that will be muddy. The DEC plans to improve the trail tread of this route in the future.
The trail across private lands to the summit of Owls Head is closed to public access on the weekends. It is available for public use during the week. Please stay on the trail and avoid trespassing on private lands.
A new section of Bradley Pond Trail to Sanatanoni Mountain has been constructed near the beginning of the trail to avoid the two crossings, which had unusable bridges. The new section leaves the old trail just as the trail leaves the gravel road and crosses Santanoni Brook on a newly constructed bridge, and then joins the old trail a short distance later.
The high water bridge over Calamity Brook has been repaired. Although it leans slightly, it is usable for crossing. The lean will be corrected at a later date. The repairs were completed by SCA High Peaks Backcountry Stewards, a DEC Forest Ranger, and the DEC High Peaks Wilderness Land Manager.
The trail through the Elk Lake Easement lands connecting to the High Peaks Wilderness is closed to the public through the regular big game hunting season. It will reopen on Monday, December 4th.
Cold Brook Trail between Indian Pass and Lake Colden is no longer a designated trail and is not maintained. It has not been a designated trail since Tropical Storm Irene.
The bridge over Ouluska Brook on the Northville-Placid Trail has collapsed into the brook. Due to low water conditions, crossing the brook is still possible.
The lower gate on Gulf Brook Road is open to public motor vehicle use. Gulf Brook Road provides access to three interior parking lots along the road. The Gulf Brook Road Upper Parking Area is near a gate that bars public motor vehicles use beyond the parking area. LaBier Flow is 2.5 miles beyond the gate and the Boreas Ponds is 3.5 miles away.
The Boquet Lean-To on the Dix Mountain Round Pond Trail has been moved away from the river and repaired by volunteers from the Adirondack 46ers.
A trail reroute has been constructed around the flooded area on the North Trail to Giant Mountain just past the lean-to.
Beaver activity has flooded parts of Jack Rabbit Trail.
The Calkins Creek Horse Trail has two bridges out, making it impassable for horse-drawn wagons and difficult for horses.
Many of the herd paths found on Mount Marshall and some of the other trail-less peaks meander around the slopes of the mountain without reaching the peak. Those climbing these peaks should navigate with a map and compass rather than follow the paths created by others.
Fixed ropes, harnesses, and other equipment are often abandoned in the Trap Dike. Do not use any of these materials – they have been aged and weatherized, making them unsafe.