Adirondack 100 Summits

Cheney Cobble

Elevation: 3683'
ADK 100 Rank: 74th
Coordinates: UTM 18 582932E 4877346N

Fact: This mountains namesake, John Cheney and VP Dick Cheney are distantly related.


Photo: Taken from Mt. Adams by T. Dubois


Peak Approach:
Very Difficuly
Land Use Considerations:
Private land issues
Other Misc. Information: Photos from my trip


Cheney Cobble

Cheney Cobble anchor's the eastern portion of the rugged and very remote North River Mountains, which are found in the southwestern corner of the high peaks. This is a very rarely visited area that sees virtually no human traffic. Contributing to the remoteness is the fact that this range is bounded on three sides by private property. The only public approach is through a small sliver of land and it involves a multiple day hike to complete. In some cases, you could be fortunate (as I was) to be invited as a guest of the primary hunting club that controls access, which makes it a reasonable, but difficult dayhike.

Cheney Cobble is undoubtedly named for the legendary Adirondack guide John Cheney. Cheney was a local guide in the early 1830's and did quite a bit of work with the nearby McIntyre Iron Works Mining. In fact, John and another guide (Harvey Holt) were hired to guide the first ascent up the state highest peak, Mt. Marcy in 1837. Mr. Cheney was a colorful character and has woven his way into a great deal of Adirondack folklore. Besides being one of the first up Marcy, Cheney was with David Henderson during the great mishap (or Calamity) that named and shaped some of the local landscape.

It's said he rarely changed his clothes and was known as kinda a reckless (but experienced) hunter. Not one prone to many words, his comments "It makes a man feel what it is to have all creation under his feet" that he opined about the Marcy expedition, was as deep as he got. It seems to me altogether fitting that this nondescript, rugged, untamed peak that sits quietly in in the background was named for a man that shares many of the same qualities. Cheney Cobble, while unknown to many, bestows the very essence of the Adirondack wilderness to anyone fortunate to go there.

Cheney's summit can best be described as a medieval fortress. Our approach was through very thick conifers stands that led to the upper cone, which is guarded by cliffs on all side. You have to carefully work your way up to the broad flat summit area, which is an open forest essentially. There are no view from the summit itself, but given that the area summit knob is elevated by cliffs, there are many ledges and spots that provide a very unique vantage of the nearby area.

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