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Backcountry Information for the Eastern Adirondacks

Map of showing the Eastern Region of the Adirondacks

Updated: May 23, 2019

General Notices

WARNING: Backcountry conditions can change suddenly. All users should plan accordingly, including bringing flashlight, first aid equipment, extra food and clothing. Weather conditions may alter your plans; you should always be prepared to spend an unplanned night in the woods before entering the back country. Back country hiking trails can be rugged and rough-they are not maintained as park walkways-wear proper footwear!

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Practice Leave No Trace: Please abide by the Seven Principles of Leave No Trace (leaves DEC website) when recreating in the Adirondacks.

Weather forecasts and conditions can and do change quickly.

  • Check the current National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast (leaves DEC website) and be prepared for the forecasted conditions or to change your plans.
  • NY Mesonow (leaves DEC website) has two dozen stations in and just outside of Adirondacks that provide real time weather data and forecasts.

Travel: Check NY511 for road closures and conditions (leaves DEC website).

DEC Adventure Adirondacks: Visit the DEC Facebook page (leaves DEC website) to follow the DEC Adventure Adirondacks Group for more information on winter hiking safety, preparedness, trail conditions, and trip ideas. Login to join the group

Adirondack Backcountry Information: Be sure to check Adirondack Backcountry Information main web page for important general notices and information which applies across the Adirondacks.

Report back country emergencies, such as lost or injured hikers, and wildland fires to the DEC Ray Brook Dispatch at 518-891-0235.

Specific Notices

Hammond Pond Wild Forest

  • The Hammond Pond Wild Forest web page provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • Nothing to report.

Lake George Wild Forest

  • The Lake George Wild Forest web page provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • The following rock climbing routes are closed to protect peregrine falcon nest sites: (4/26)
    • Shelving Rock Mountain:
      • All routes on Carhartt Wall are closed.
      • All routes on the Main Wall are open.
    • Sleeping Beauty Mountain: All rock climbing routes are closed.
    • Potash Mountain: Potash Cliff
      • Haley's Nose (18) and Goes Both Ways (19) as described on page 86 of Adirondack Rock Volume 2, A Rock Climbers Guide, Second Edition, are closed.
      • In addition, the 4th class scramble to access the Pitch 1 ledge of most routes, is closed.
      • All open routes must be led ground-up.
  • The gate on the west end of Gay Pond Road is closed for mud season. (4/11)
  • The following gates are closed for mud season: (4/5)
    • Lily Pond Road Trailhead and Long Pond Trailhead in Horicon
    • Jabe Pond in Hague
    • Palmer Pond in Chester
  • The Town of Fort Ann has reopened Shelving Rock Road. Sleeping Beauty, Shelving Rock, and the Buck Mountain East Trailhead are now accessible. (4/4)
  • Dacy Clearing Road remains closed at this time due to muddy conditions. (4/4)
  • The gate on Notch Lane Truck Trail on the nearby Mount Tom State Forest in the town of White Creek, Washington County, has been closed for ice/mud conditions. (2/8)
  • Trails on Cat & Thomas Mountains are marked with Lake George Land Conservancy markers. Obtain a map from Conservancy before hiking this trail system. (2016)
  • Heavy blowdown is present above 1,200 feet on Erebus Mountain Trail, Fishbrook Pond to Lake George Trail and other lesser used trails in the area. (2015)
  • Deer Leap Trail on Tongue Mountain is washed out and heavily cobbled with boulders from the trail head to the spur to Deer Leap, but is passable on foot. (2014)
  • Equestrians should be aware that there is significant blowdown on horse trails. While hikers may be able to get through the trails, it may be impossible or at least much harder for horses to get through. (2010)

Pharaoh Lake Wilderness

  • The Pharaoh Lake Wilderness web page provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • The over Alder Brook on the Goose Pond Trail was heavily damaged by ice this spring. Alder Brook cannot be crossed at this time. (4/26)

Split Rock Mountain Wild Forest

  • The Split Rock Mountain Wild Forest web page provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • Nothing to report.