Bald Mountain - Hiking in the Adirondacks
Life in the Adirondacks
We are so blessed to live at the foot of the Adirondacks. One of our favorite things to do is to climb Bald Mountain. It's only about an hour drive from our house and the drive itself is very pleasant. It's right up Route 28. There are many little towns and several lakes along the way. The base of the foot trail for Bald Mountain is located just off of Route 28 on County Route 93. There are signs from Route 28 so if you just head north on Route 28 from Old Forge you can't miss it. There is a parking lot to leave your car in at the base of the trail, along with some information about the mountain and the trails.
Located Just off Route 28, north of Old Forge
About a 1 Mile Hike to the Summit
The summit of Bald Mountain is about 2350 feet and the view is spectacular. The hike itself is just under one mile. It starts off as a fairly flat and simple hike thru the woods but quickly turns to steep rocks. But don't let that scare you. It's really not too bad. We've been going as a family for years. My mother, who is now 67 still goes and doesn't have any trouble. My youngest daughter was less than one year the first time we took her up. My step-father carried her up in one of those back pack carriers. You can go at your own pace and there are many places along the way to sit and rest. Our local elementary school often takes 3rd, 4th or 5th graders to Bald Mountain on field trips.
In places where the paths get a little challenging, there are other options of paths to take thru the woods. The paths aren't as scenic and are a bit out of your way, but they offer an alternative to the rocky more challenging sections. The wooded section has many tree roots to navigate. The scenery is often changing.
Watch for the Rainy Season
The trails can get quite muddy following a big rain so watch the weather. It takes longer for the rain to dry up in the woods. The wooded part of the trails gets pretty muddy and the rocks can get pretty slick. It doesn't make it impossible but you do need to be careful. We have climbed the mountain during a rain and it was ok, we just had to go slow. The view is still beautiful even in a light rain.
The Rondaxe Fire Tower Gives You A Great View
Rondaxe Fire Tower
The Rondaxe Fire Tower located at the summit can give you an even better view of the surrounding area. The tower is about 5 flights of stairs to reach the top. It can get quite windy. Personally, I have never quite made the top of the tower since I do have a little fear of heights. I love climbing the mountain but I can't bring myself to climb the tower. The wind is much stronger on the stairs of the tower and the farther you get up, the smaller the stair cases seem. My oldest has made it to the top and she says it's amazing. I will have to take her word for it and enjoy the view from the bottom of the tower.
Things to Remember
The total hike takes about 2 hours if you were to just hike straight to the top and head back down. But you will want to leave yourself time to enjoy the view once you reach the top. It's beautiful up there and there are plenty of rocks to rest on. You will want to have water with you at the very least. Many times we carry a snack to enjoy at the top. When the school does field trips the kids bring a bag lunch and they eat at the top. It's very relaxing to just hang out at the summit. And of course you will want to take lots of pictures. There are many other attractions in the area. Other mountains to climb, many trails, and of course the beautiful lakes. But don't miss out on this. Take the time to see for yourself how beautiful the view is.