Aspiring 46er

Aspiring 46ers

The Adirondack 46ers is a club devoted to hikers who have summited all 46 High Peaks of the Adirondack Mountains! The 46ers are committed to preserving the wilderness, and the club works in collaboration with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. Hikers who have summited the 46 Adirondack High Peaks can register and become an official ADK 46er!

Upper Wolfjaw - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Visit the 46 Adirondack High Peaks to get all the details about hiking the Adirondack 46ers and the mountains you need to complete to become an Adirondack 46er!

Before you start hiking, download the Official 46er Questionnaire and Mountain List from the 46er website!

Earthrunners- Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Aspiring 46ers

Since John has introduced me to the Adirondack high peaks, it has been my dream to hike all 46 high peaks! John started them earlier than I did, and has completed some of these peaks multiple times for me! John & I met in 2013 and as an amateur, I began hiking with him. I was out of shape, fresh our of college and didn’t have many hobbies. John took me up my very first mountain in August 2013 which was Hurricane Mountain in the Adirondacks and I absolutely loved it!! At first, I struggled with a lot of hikes as I was so out of shape, but he continued to push me, and I fell in love with the experience.

In 2016 I started hiking the Adirondack 46ers and entered my first actual high peak, which was Phelps Mountain! Unfortunately, we both work 9-5 jobs, Monday through Friday, and the Adirondacks are about 3.5 hours from us, so we cant just easily hop in the car and head to the Adirondacks, especially with animals at home and a homestead to tend to! And the Adirondacks gets crazy busy on the weekends!

But my goal is to complete all 46 high peaks, no matter how long it takes! So follow us and my experiences with the Adirondack 46ers!

Ausable Club

The Ausable Club, in St. Huberts, New York, is the clubhouse of the Adirondack Mountain Reserve, which upon the creativity of William George Neilson, was designed in 1887 to preserve the lands around Beede’s Hotel from the lumber industry. The Reserve once owned most of the Adirondack High Peaks. The Ausable Club is a private establishment in the Adirondack Mountains. A hotel, golf course, tennis courts, the place for many events and the start to many trails!

St. Hubert’s Parking Lot

Many of the high peaks start from the St. Hubert’s Parking Lot. Parking fills up incredibly fast here and people often park-like idiots to get a spot! So honestly, I found that in the summer months especially, you need to get there no later than 7 a.m or else you will not have a parking spot. Located 7.5 miles west on route 73 from the junction of exit 30 on 87. Once parked, you follow the Ausable Road by foot about .7 miles to the trailheads. At about .2 miles, on your left, the road will turn from dirt to pavement, you can enter the trail for Noonmark Mountain (which is one of my favorites and Round Mountain!

You’ll arrive at the Ausable Club (golf course), and take a left, continuing on paved roads. Shortly after, you will see a trail register. Ahead is a beautiful engraved wooden gate that will take you on the start of your journey! The Lake Road Trail leads to flourishing forest, beaver dams and streams and so many trails to waterfalls, high peaks, and other breathtaking scenery!

Earth Runners

Mt. Marcy – June 2018 – #1

Hiking the Adirondack 46ers - Mnt Marcy

Mount Marcy peak is the highest point in New York state within the High Peaks Region! Many people find this hike to be challenging due to its length. Beginning on the Van Hoevenberg Trail from the Adirondack Loj or near Heart Lake, the trail is easy until you reach Marcy Dam. After the Dam, you begin climbing your climb.

Address: 1002 Heart Lake Rd, Lake Placid, NY 12946 (via Van Hoevenberg Trail)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
53445 3166 14.8 Miles10 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes
Mount Marcy - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

On June 9th, 2018, we finally got friends to agree and go hiking with us. Of course, we chose the tallest mountain to hike. There were 6 of us. The trail seemed really easy, very small incline until the last 2 miles, then it turned into mostly boulders and that’s where the non-hikers struggled a little more! The hike definitely got harder the closer you got to the summit. As we approached the top, it was super foggy, but it cleared up so we can grab those beautiful views of the Adirondack high peaks, Mont-Royal in Montreal, Canada, and the Green Mountains in Vermont! all from the highest peak in the state.

I happened to have some sort of food poisoning or bug the entire hike up, making the hike much slower and making me look like the walking dead! But I survived and still summited Mount Marcy and would absolutely love to do it again!!


Whiteface – June 2020 – #5

Climbing Whiteface Mountain

Whiteface is the 5th tallest peak in the Adirondacks with an elevation of 4867′. There are multiple routes you can take to complete Whiteface. We parked and started at the SUNY Atmospheric Science Research Center, and hiked 4 different peaks, 2 of them being high peaks. We started with Marble Mountain, then Whiteface Mountain, and after Whiteface Mountain, hiked Lookout Mountain and Esther Mountain, (which those two can be completed on the way or or the way back, we just wanted to get to Whiteface Mountain before the rain!).

Address: 110 Marble Mt Ln, Wilmington, NY 12997

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4867′42535′ 10.4 Miles8.5 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

It was extremely hot this day, and the first mile is pretty steep, so we were definitely sweating! But after Marble Mountain it tends to mellow out! If your goal is to complete all 46 peaks, I recommend completing Esther Mountain too, as it’s a really easy flat trail to complete! We hiked this during COVID, so Whiteface was actually closed, so people couldn’t drive up, so we lucked out with avoiding the crowd of the tourist, and their were moments we had Whiteface to ourselves!

Whiteface Mountain

Gothics – September 2017 – #10

Gothics Mountain - 46er

There are different routes you can take up Gothics, changing the mileage and difficulty level. This trail offers the most picturesque 360 views! Gothics is one of my all-time favorite mountains climbed in the Adirondacks!

Address: 24-68 Ausable Rd, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (St. Hubert’s parking lot)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
47365 4070 10 Miles9 Hours
Dog-FriendlyNo
Gothics Mountain - 46er

We Hiked Gothics via Pyramid Peak on September 28th, 2017, which was a 13.1-mile loop via the Ausable Club in Keene Valley. We didn’t see a single person our entire hike. One reason I really enjoy hiking during the week vs. the weekends. We summited both Gothics, which is a 46er, and Pyramid Peak, which is not considered one the 46ers. It was an absolutely beautiful day and offered one of the most beautiful views I have ever seen! Gothics is one of my favorite hikes in the Adirondacks. I happened to have strained my IT band shortly before hiking this mountain, making it a tough descent for myself. But every minute was worth it! At the bottom of Gothics mountain, you will pass by the Beaver Meadow Falls, which is a gorgeous waterfall to cool ya down in the summer months!

Pyramid Mountain

Mt. Colden – October 2018 – #11

Mount Colden is a very popular mountain to hike in the High Peaks. The hike is challenging and absolutely beautiful! There are two different routes that begin at the High Peaks Information Center. The trail can be very strenuous and long.

Address: 1002 Heart Lake Rd, Lake Placid, NY 12946 (via Avalanche Pass Trail)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4714 5 2850 15.2 Miles10 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

We hiked Mount Colden on October 13th, 2018 via the Avalanche Pass Trail, which was supposed to be a 12.8-mile loop. Well, we missed our turn back to the car and ended up at a different parking lot which was an additional hike to where we were parked! It turned into an 18-mile hike! We were hoping to see some beautiful fall colors! We saw snow instead! But that’s what you have to expect in the high peaks region!

Mnt Colden - Adirondack 46er

Giant – June 2017 & September 2019- #12

Giant Mountain - 46er

Giant Mountain, AKA, “Giant of the Valley,” is the twelfth-highest peak of the 46ers! It is known as the “Giant of the Valley” because of its stature overlooking Keene Valley and St. Huberts.

Address: NY-73 Scenic, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (via Ridge Trail)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4627 4 3050 6 Miles7.5 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes
Giant Mountain - June 2019

We hiked Giant Mountain Peak twice, once just John and I on June 17th, 2017 and once with my sister and her boyfriend on Septemeber 21st, 2019. Both two different views! Two different trails! The first time we hiked Giant Mountain Peak, we hiked it via the Ridge Trail which is a 6 mile out and back trail located near Keene Valley. Another hike where there wasn’t a person in sight! It was rainy, cloudy and wet! When we got to the top of the summit, you couldn’t see far in front of you, and the wind just about blew me over!

The second time we hiked it was to celebrate Steve’s birthday, it was beautiful, sunny, warm and much more crowded!


Nippletop – July 2019 – #13

Nippletop - Adirondack 46er

Nippletop Mountain is the 13th highest mountain in New York State with an elevation of 4,620 ft. It is in the Northeastern part of the Colvin Range and is often wet when hiking!

Address: 16 Roaring Brook Trail, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (Bear Den Trail)
24-68 Ausable Rd, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (Via Elk Pass) (St. Hubert’s parking lot)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4620 5 4050 12.6 Miles10 Hours
Dog-FriendlyNo

As mentioned in Dial, on July 6th, 2019 we planned to summit Nippletop, Dial and Blake, only making it to Dial and Nippletop due to storms! It was definitely a strenuous hike and we didn’t get much of a view by the time we got to Nippletop because of the rain and clouds!


EarthRunners

Santanoni Range – June 2021 – #14,18,46

Santanoni, Panther & Couchsachraga

The Santanoni Range includes Panther (#18), Santanoni (#14), and Couchsachraga (#46) Peaks is a 16.8-mile relatively difficult loop trail near Newcomb.

Santononi range, 46er

Address: Newcomb Central School District, Newcomb, NY

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
Santanoni 4606
Couchsachraga 3720′
Panther 4442′
54612 16.8 Miles13 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

This was one of our first big ranges, grouping multiple high peaks together. It was supposed to be a beautiful day, sunny, with no rain in the forecast. Well, it was cloudy and incredibly foggy at the summits and rained most of the day, with lots of mud! We hiked in the first 5 miles and set up camp on Friday and then hiked all 3 peaks Saturday. The rain kept the bugs away, so that was a plus! Due to local topography, these mountains are generally wetter than the rest of the High Peaks. There weren’t many people on the trail which was nice, and most of the time we had the summits to ourselves or shared with one other person or group.

Santanoni Peak – June 2021 – #14

Santanoni Peak at 4607 feet, the fourteenth highest peak in the Adirondacks, is the highest in the Santanoni Mountains and is the highest peak west of the Hudson River in the Adirondacks.

Address: Newcomb Central School District, Newcomb, NY

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
460752860 11.4 Miles10 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

Out of all 3 peaks in this range, Santanoni was our last peak. It was like 4 o’clock when we got back from Couchsachraga, so we had mixed feelings about completing the 3rd peak, but we did it anyway! We descended the Express trail, which was much steeper!

Santononi Peak, 46er

Panther – June 2021 – #18

Panther, 46er

Address: Newcomb Central School District, Newcomb, NY

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
444263762 12 Miles13 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

Panther was our first peak out of the Santanoni Range. Once you get to the top, where there is an intersection to go to Panther (#18), Santanoni (#14), or Couchsachraga (#46), you take a right, and Panther isn’t too far from there. Panther was my favorite out of all 3. Despite, the fog, and no views, and relatively windy, it was still beautiful!

Couchsachraga – June 2021 – #46

Couchsachraga is the lowest of the 46ers (and not actually above 4,000 feet), standing at 3,820 ft.

Address: Newcomb Central School District, Newcomb, NY

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
382063140′ 15 Miles12 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

Couchsachraga was our second peak of the Santanoni Range. People warned us it wouldn’t be fun, and kind of deterred us not to go. But we did anyways. Everyone we passed looked relatively miserable. You decent a lot, and knowing that you have to come back up all of what you just went down, and still have another peak to hike, made it to be a long trip down. The bog was super muddy! After making it to the summit and hiking back to the 3 or 4-way intersection, the hike up actually went relatively quick! It wasn’t as bad as everyone made it out to be! Then we were onto our last peak!

Couchsachraga, 46er
Couchsachraga, 46er

Big Slide – March 2020 – #27

We hiked Big Slide Mountain via The Brothers trail which was a 7.6 mile trail according to AllTrails. This trail was one of my absolute favorites! It was so beautiful!

Address: ADK Garden Trailhead, Johns Brook Ln, Keene Valley, NY 12943

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4240′ 42800′ 9.4 Miles8 Hours
Dog-FriendlyNo
Big Slide

We hiked Big Slide in March, still icy, but not much snow! We camped out and slept in my car the night before, stopping at the Mountaineer first and finding some good reads! The next morning we stopped at the Old Mountain Coffee shop in Keen before heading to the trail-head. Of course the trail-head parking was packed full, we managed to get a spot, and we actually didnt see many people on top of Big Slide Mountain. We had the entire top to ourselves to enjoy. This hike has some beautiful views and is one of the most beautiful trails I have hiked!

The Brothers Path is a rocky ridge for the first 1.5 miles. Then the ascent to Big Slide Peak. An absolute favorite!


Esther – June 2020 – #28

Esther Mountain is the 28th tallest 46er. We completed this with Whiteface Mountain, via Marble Mountain Rd. Esther by itself is a 6.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail near Wilmington. We parked and started hiking at the SUNY Atmospheric Science Research Center, and hiked 4 different peaks, 2 of them being high peaks. We started with Marble Mountain, then Whiteface Mountain, and after Whiteface Mountain, hiked Lookout Mountain and Esther Mountain, (which those two can be completed on the way or or the way back, we just wanted to get to Whiteface Mountain before the rain!).

Address: 110 Marble Mt Ln, Wilmington, NY 12997

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4240′ 4 3020′ 7.5 Miles7.5 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

The first mile up Marble Mountain is pretty steep, but after Marble Mountain it tends to mellow out! If your goal is to complete all 46 peaks, I recommend completing Esther and Whiteface Mountain at the same time! We hiked this during COVID, so Whiteface was actually closed, so people couldn’t drive up, so we lucked out with avoiding the crowd of the tourist, and their were moments we had Whiteface to ourselves! I had some serious knee issues coming down this one!


Upper Wolfjaw – June 2017 – #29

Upper Wolfjaw - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Upper Wolfjaw Mountain is a mountain located in Essex County, New York. Alexander Helwig Wyant, Landscape Artist, named the mountain, with Lower Wolfjaw Mountain, for their appearance in profile.

Address: 24-68 Ausable Rd, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (St. Hubert’s parking lot)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4185 5361912.7 Miles11 Hours
Dog-FriendlyNo
Upperwolfjaw - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

On June 18th, 2017 we hiked Upper Wolfjaw Mountain. It was an absolutely beautiful day to be in the mountains! So Upper Wolfjaw doesn’t have much of a summit, you can climb up this incredibly large boulder to get some beautiful views, but that was really hard for me to climb up! Most people complete Upper and Lower Wolfjaw Mountain togeather. However, this was that time when I was having a lot of issues with my IT band, so we only did Upper Wolfjaw, and we left Lower Wolfjaw for another day!


Phelps – February 2016 – #32

Phelps Mountain -Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Phelps Mountain is a mountain located in Essex County, New York. It is named after Orson Schofield “Old Mountain” Phelps, who cut the first trail up Mount Marcy and named several of the Adirondack peaks.

Address: 1002 Heart Lake Rd, Lake Placid, NY 12946

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4161519828.8 Miles9 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes
Phelps Mountain - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Phelps is actually one of the first high-peaks John took me up! It was February 20th, 2016, and relatively cold and icy! Making it a hard decent! It offered some stunning views though and made for a great first high peak!


Cascade – January 2017 – #36

Cascade Mountain - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Cascade Mountain Trail is a popular hiking trail to climb both Porter Mountain and Cascade Mountain peaks. With a little bit of a rock scramble, you will see some beautiful views on your way up!
The summit does get crowded during the summer months!

Address: Cascade Mountain Foot Trail, Lake Placid, NY 12946

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4098219404.8 Miles5 Hours
Dog-FriendlyYes

Location: Keene, NY – The trailhead can be reached from Route 73 before reaching Cascade Lakes.

On January 5th, 2017, John planned a getaway for us in the Adirondacks. We have never stayed in a hotel, we have always camped or slept in our vehicles, but this time John booked two nights at THE HAÜS. John’s plan was to propose to me on Cascade Mountain, however, it was below 0 that day, and he was worried about dropping the ring! So he proposed to me with a brisk private horse-sleigh-ride and it was perfect! My Subaru actually broke down on us on the way to the Adirondacks making John a little nervous that we weren’t going to make it to the horse-sleigh ride!

Proposal - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers
On Saturday…

We started our climb up both Cascade and Porter Mountain. It was -1° F. The trail was snow-covered. Crystallized white powder gleamed off the trees and made it an absolutely beautiful hike. The top was very slippery, we had crampons, but I’m not going to lie, I still managed to wipe out.. As we approached the top, there was a group of Canadians celebrating a birthday with shots and cake! The peak was still relatively busy even though it was pretty cold out! My hands were aching at the top, and it was definitely good that John did not choose to propose to me that day on top of the mountain! After peaking Cascade we summited Porter Mountain which is easily accessible from Cascade Mountain without adding significant time or mileage onto your hike.


Porter – January 2017 – #38

Hiking the Adirondack 46ers- Porter

Porter has 3 different accesses, the Garden Parking lot at Keen, the airport at Keen, or the trailhead for Cascade Mountian. Giving you longer, shorter, easier or harder hiking depending on what you are looking for! Porter is easily accessible from the Cascade Mountain Trail and offers a shorter hike where you can check 2 high peaks off your list!

Address: Cascade Mountain Foot Trail, Lake Placid, NY 12946

Total Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty (1-7) Elevation Gain
(Feet)
Round TripAverage Hiking Time
4059 3 2700 7.6 Miles5.5
Dog-FriendlyYes

We summited Porter Via Cascade Mountain. So like I mentioned above, It was cold, snowy and quieter than the summer months! I do recommend snowshoes or crampons depending on the weather. And, as much as I dislike winter hiking, I do like a smaller to no crowd at the summit!


Dial – July 2019 – #41

Dial Mountain - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Dial Mountain is located centrally along a ridge that typically requires hikers to summit Nippletop first or the shoulder of Noonmark Mountain and Bears Den Mountain. It has absolutely beautiful views, but a very small area to hang at!

Address: 16 Roaring Brook Trail, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (Bear Den Trail)
24-68 Ausable Rd, Keene Valley, NY 12943 (Via Elk Pass) (St. Hubert’s parking lot)

Total
Elevation
(Feet)
Difficulty
(1-7)
Elevation
Gain
(Feet)
Round
Trip
Average
Hiking
Time
4020 5 3450 10 Miles9 Hours
Dog-FriendlyNo

On July 6th, 2019 we planned to summit 3 high peaks. Nippletop, Dial and Blake. We made it to Dial and Nippletop and it started to pour, lightning and thunder! We sat and waiting for a while to see if the storm would pass, it didn’t. So we felt it was safest to decent the mountain without finishing Blake. It was about 85 degrees that day, so honestly, the rain felt amazing! Even though Dial mountain is one of the “shorter” mountains, to me it was one of the more strenuous hikes! We completed this via the Leach Trail which took us over Bear Den, Dial and then Nippletop. Returning via Elk Pass.


Tips for Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

I often use Alltrails for specific hiking information – however, It is not always accurate, and I realize people’s reviews don’t always reflect on how I feel about the trail, so keep that in mind!!

I recommend always have a guidebook and map, which you can find at the Adirondack Mountaineer in Keene Valley!

Always take extra water, food and have a flashlight or headlamp! And the summits can get pretty cold, so pack warm layers, you can always take off layers, but you can’t put more on if you don’t have them!

Hiking boots help so you don’t roll your ankles and really protect your feet, but wear what is most comfortable for you! John and I often wear Earthrunners, which people probably think we are crazy – but I absolutely love them!

Hiking information came directly from the 46 Adirondack High Peaks Site!

Lover of Mountains

Check out our other blogs where we share our destination experiences and tips, food recipes (usually Paleo recipes), including hiking recipes and snacks to pack and gear reviews! 

Blog | Food | Destinations

The Ausable River- Hiking the Adirondack 46ers
Practicing mindfulness and meditation in the Adirondacks
Aspiring 46er - Noonmark Mountain-not a 46er!
EarthRunners
Upper Wolfjaw - Hiking the Adirondack 46ers

Alyx B

A Certified Yoga Instructor, with a Bachelor's in Environmental Sustainability and Animal Science. Lover of animals and tacos! And passionate about traveling, hiking, yoga, and the environment.

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