Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

High Peaks Wilderness - Unit Management Plan

The High Peaks Wilderness Complex is comprised of three distinct, but interrelated units: the Ampersand Primitive Area, the High Peaks Wilderness, and the Johns Brook Primitive Corridor. While its topography varies considerably, the area is predominantly high mountain country, containing many of New York's highest peaks. The primary attraction is Mount Marcy, the state's highest peak at an elevation of 5,344 feet. The eastern portion of the wilderness is heavily used by recreationists. Western segments of the wilderness are more remote, receive substantially less use, and offer some of the best opportunities for solitude in the northeast.

For a description of recreational opportunities in the unit, please visit the High Peaks Wilderness recreation page.

Status of the UMP

The Department adopted a Unit Management Plan (UMP) for the High Peaks Wilderness in 1999. If you have questions about the UMP, please email us at

Download the UMP

High Peaks Wilderness Unit Management Plan - PDF (3.4 MB)
Environmental Impact Statement - PDF (700 KB)

2018 Draft Amendment - Management of New Lands

Since 2008, the Adirondack Park Agency has classified nearly 40,000 acres of new Forest Preserve lands into the High Peaks Wilderness, including portions of the recently-acquired Boreas Ponds Tract. The Department is in the early stages of developing an amendment that will propose recreational facilities and opportunities within and adjacent to these recently-classified lands.

Public Comment Opportunities

The Department will be holding an open house to solicit feedback from the public on Tuesday, April 3, 2018 at 6:00 PM in the Newcomb Central School gymnasium at 5535 State Route 28N, Newcomb, New York. The Department will also be accepting written comments until April 20, 2018. Comments can be sent to:

Robert Ripp, Forester
232 Golf Course Road
Warrensburg, NY 12885