…And I must go." I had that John Muir quote stuck in my head all week leading up to my solo hiking trip to the Adirondacks!
My goal for this trip was to log 20-25 miles in four days and I succeeded with 21.62 total miles and a total elevation gain of 3,698 feet. My GPS tracker was a little different than what some signs said for trail lengths, but overall it was fairly close.
I was in the southern Adirondacks, so no high peaks this trip, but they are now something I definitely would like to go back and tackle some day!
Day 1: Round Pond
I had big goals to go in and do a summit once I arrived to the area, but after driving all day I realized it would be smarter for a less strenuous hike. Therefore, I headed out for Round Pond. It was just under five miles and fairly easy with a few decent climbs. All the trails I went on were very well-marked, which I noticed and appreciated right away. This out-and-back trail takes you to a serene pond where you hear birds and the occasional loon and that’s it! It was very peaceful
Day 2: Crane Mountain
I loved this hike! Most markers and sites list this loop trail as four miles, but mine was less. I always check out AllTrails comments before hikes, and I agree that counter-clockwise following red-blue-red markers was the way to go. The ascent comes quickly and it’s a rocky, steep climb to the summit, but the rest of the loop was easy with the last 1.5 miles trekking through the woods along a small stream. The view at the top is amazing and every bit worth the climb!
I will add, I was quite proud of myself on this hike because I do not care for heights. When I had to summit Mount Mansfield in Vermont I was a mess at the final climb, and it took me a while to get comfortable getting up treestands. I did my research and knew what I was getting into for this hike. A tall ladder is part of the trail towards the top - and I climbed it easily with no fear! Sometimes, if you fear something, you have to jump in and face it, and that’s what I did. Although I still won’t go near any edges on mountaintops, I am much more comfortable and confident throughout any part of the climb.
Day 3: Peaked Mountain
To be honest, this hike wasn’t my favorite. I think Crane spoiled me from the day before. This was a seven mile out and back and the summit didn't come until the end, and it seemed to take much longer to finally get to the top. The beginning portion of this trail was very tranquil through woods mostly following a small brook, so the sounds of water flowing over rocks accompanies you for a lot of the way. I ran into a flock of baby turkeys up near the top, so that was cool, but overall I probably wouldn’t do Peaked again.
Day 4: OK Slip Falls
I FLEW on this hike on my final day. It was a relatively flat trail that ended with a spectacular waterfall. I wasn’t sure where to go on the trail to get closer since the blue markers ended and there were some yellow painted hashes, so I stopped where the blue markers stopped and headed back out. I was a little antsy to get on the road, so I didn’t want to waste too much time trying to figure it all out. From what I read in my research, the trip down to the falls is extremely hazardous and dangerous, so that was another reason I stayed on the overlook and went no further. It was the perfect, easy trail to end my trip on. A great trail for beginners.
Again, I am no expert, but for the casual hiker, these items have worked well for me and kept me feeling safe and well-prepared. Doing research before you go is crucial. I always read about trails I’m interested in before I do them so I am not caught off guard and know what to expect. I think that is another very important part of being a responsible hiker and outdoorswoman!
"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." --Anatole France