The eastern Adirondacks occupy the mid-elevation shelf between the central highlands and the Lake Champlain valley, with heights that top out only at 2600 feet. However, there is nothing middling about the region. Here you will find some of the best hiking trail networks in the Adirondacks—best in terms of maintenance and design, and best in terms of the sheer number of outstanding destinations.
Discover the Eastern Adirondacks covers the entire Lake George basin and the beautiful Pharaoh Lake Wilderness. Trails will take you to secluded ponds, open summits, and rugged ranges.
Many of these trails have been around for generations, such as the former carriage trails near Shelving Rock. Others are relative newcomers, such as the ankle-twisting path from Cat Mountain to Thomas Mountain. The eastern Adirondacks have something for everybody.
The Shelving Rock trail network east of Lake George offers many miles of trails to a wealth of scenic destinations: Sleeping Beauty, Shelving Rock Falls, Black Mountain, and Fishbrook Pond. Are you looking for an easy day hike or weekend trip? Would you like to walk beside a remote stretch of Lake George shoreline or camp in a lean-to beside a quiet pond? You will find no better place anywhere in the Adirondacks.
The Tongue Mountain Range offers a rugged, wilderness experience for people seeking a rocky, narrow footpath leading to outstanding views. The Tongue Range seems out of place in the Adirondacks, with an ecology that resembles mountain ranges further south. Trees and plants that are rare elsewhere in the Adirondacks are abundant here, such as hickory and red-cedar. The range is also home to the timber rattlesnake, a threatened species protected by state law. An exceptional hiking trail traces the entire length of the range, from Deer Leap to Montcalm Point.
The Pharaoh Lake Wilderness packs more lakes, ponds, lean-tos, and mountains per square mile than any other Adirondack wilderness area, with Pharaoh Lake as the centerpiece.
One of the largest Adirondack lakes completely within the Forest Preserve, it is an outstanding backpacking destination with no fewer than six lean-tos to choose from and numerous tent sites. Trails completely encircle its shores, and rocky points offer views of Pharaoh Mountain and Treadway Mountain. You can approach the lake from six directions, including Desolate Brook, Crane Pond, and Grizzle Ocean. The elaborate trail system makes several extended trips possible.
This edition of Discover the Eastern Adirondacks features updated trail information, dozens of new photographs, several new route descriptions, redesigned trail maps, and suggestions for extended backpacking trips—making this the definitive guide to the eastern Adirondacks.