High Peaks Wilderness - Unit Management Plan - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

Department of Environmental Conservation

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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 r5.ump@dec.ny.gov.

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 1999, over 84,000 acres of land have been added to the High Peaks Wilderness, including portions of the recently-acquired Boreas Ponds Tract. The Department has completed a draft UMP amendment that proposes recreational facilities and opportunities within and adjacent to these recently-classified lands.

Public Comment Opportunities

The Department will be holding three public meetings to present and accept comments on the draft UMP amendment:

  • May 23, 2018 at 10:00 AM at DEC Headquarters, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY
  • May 23, 2018 at 6:00 PM at the Newcomb Central School gymnasium, 5535 State Route 28N, Newcomb NY
  • June 21, 2018 at 6:00 PM at the Lake Placid Conference Center, Lussi Ballroom, 2608 Main Street, Lake Placid NY

The Department will also be accepting written comments until June 27, 2018. Comments can be sent to:

Tate Connor, Forester
PO Box 296
Ray Brook, NY 12977

Download the UMP Amendment

2018 Draft Amendment to the High Peaks Wilderness Complex UMP - PDF (6.3 MB)

2000 Amendment - Little Porter Mountain Trail Relocation

This amendment proposed the relocation of the Little Porter Mountain Trail to reduce the amount of private land crossed by the trail.

2000 Amendment to the High Peaks Wilderness Complex UMP - PDF (1 MB)