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Backcountry Information for the Northern Adirondacks

Updated: September 22, 2022

Map of showing the Northern Region of the Adirondacks

General Notices

The Welcome to the Adirondacks webpage provides information about the Forest Preserve and conservation easement lands, outdoor recreation opportunities, and Leave No Trace (leaves DEC website). Check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpage for Adirondack recreation resources, hiking resources, and other information which applies across the Adirondacks.

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 backcountry. Backcountry hiking trails can be rugged and rough-they are not maintained as park walkways-wear proper footwear!

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Emergency Situations: If you get lost or injured; keep calm and stay put. If you have cell service, call 911 or the DEC Forest Ranger Dispatch, 833-NYS-RANGERS (833-697-7264).

Weather forecasts and conditions can and do change quickly.

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

Travel: Check 511NY (leaves DEC website) for road closures and conditions.

@NYSDECAlerts: Follow @NYSDECAlerts on Twitter for real-time updates to help you prepare.

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

Adirondack Canoe Route/Northern Forest Canoe Trail

  • The Adirondack Canoe Route is part of the 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT) (leaves DEC website) which links the waterways of New York, Vermont, Québec, New Hampshire and Maine.

Debar Mountain Wild Forest

  • The Debar Mountain Wild Forest webpage provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • Trespassing in Debar Lodge or any other building is prohibited.

Kushaqua Conservation Easement Tract

  • The Kushaqua Tract Conservation Easement Tract webpage provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • Mud locks will be in place by April 1st to protect the integrity of the roads until further notice. (3/24)

Paul Smiths College Easement Tract

Santa Clara Conservation Easement Tract (includes Madawaska Pond/Quebec Brook Primitive Area & Deer River Primitive Area)

  • The Santa Clara Tract Conservation Easement Tract webpage provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • The southern spur off the CP3 route loop is currently closed to motorized users. Due to a logging operation on the property users accessing the easement should reduce speed and exercise caution both on the Brown Track Road and on the easement roads in that area. Anglers are advised not to use the northern of the 2 fishing sites on the CP3 route as trucks will be crossing that bridge regularly. (07/28)
  • A logging operation is trucking over a short stretch of the C8 Snowmobile Corridor just west of the McCavanaugh Pond Club main gate. Trucking and logging operations are anticipated to continue through the duration of the winter. Snowmobilers sharing this short stretch of road with truck traffic are urged to reduce their speed and exercise caution.

Saranac Lakes Wild Forest

  • The Saranac Lake Wild Forest webpage provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and maps of the unit.
  • Sections of the Adirondack Rail Trail between Saranac Lake and Lake Clear will be closed starting the week after Labor Day to allow the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) to remove leftover railroad ties from the corridor. Work will begin on Tuesday, September 6. DOT will then incrementally close sections of the trail to allow for the safe movement of equipment and materials. Work is expected to continue through September. (09/08)
  • The road to Saint Germain and Meadow Ponds has been repaired and is now open.(6/09)
  • The lock between Middle and Lower Saranac Lakes is now open for public use. (06/02)

St. Regis Canoe Area

  • The St. Regis Canoe Area webpage provides information about the unit and its recreational opportunities, and a map of the unit.
  • Nothing to report.