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  • Mt Adams

    I was thinking about doing Mt Adams, I will be hopefully be goth to the high peaks area one more time and this sounds like a good hike with good views. It looks like a good amount of elevation gain in a short distance which will be interesting, I read the views are pretty good so looking forward to this when I can make it.

  • #2
    It is a very steep trail, but it's also not a particularly long hike so as long as you're not getting a super late start you can take your time without any rush. If trekking poles are something you hike with at least occasionally, I would definitely bring them.

    The views are one of the best of any fire tower peak in the ADKs.

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    • #3
      Definitely save it for a bluebird day. The view is amazing. I'll do DSettahr one better and say Adams is one of the best views in all of the Adirondacks - not just fire towers. It's a Top 5 view for me personally.

      Pretty steep. I think you get around 1500' ele gain over the last mile. Strenuous but no major obstacles or anything dangerous as I recall. Just a helluva steep and steady climb.

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      • #4
        Agree with all that's been said, but add, no views if you don't get in the fire tower cab. The summit is treed in.

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        • Makwa
          Makwa commented
          Editing a comment
          Good point. If you're skittish climbing a tower then no views for you!

      • #5
        What’s the parking lot size, would I have to get there super early?

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        • Learning The Trails
          Learning The Trails commented
          Editing a comment
          Decent sized. If it's full you can park on the side of the road near the TH. Haven't done Adams but used the TH for Allen and met FlyFishingandBeer and @Notbuiltforspeed there for another hike.

      • #6
        I also read the dec doesn’t maintain the trail, is this true and it is easy to follow?

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        • Makwa
          Makwa commented
          Editing a comment
          Easy to follow.

      • #7
        Originally posted by Rmxfiles View Post
        I also read the dec doesn’t maintain the trail, is this true and it is easy to follow?
        Actually we, The ADK Highpeaks Foundation, maintain the trail and did the restoration and continued maintenance of both the tower and trail. Probaly the trickest part of the trail is seeing it from the East River trail. The DEC put the sign up across from where the Adams Trail starts and a lot of folks miss it. Simply it is on your left just at the height of land past the old observers cabin.
        "Climbing is about freedom. There's no prize money; there are no gold medals. The mountains are all about going there to do what you want to do. That's why I'll never tell anyone else how to climb. All I can say is, This is how I prefer to do it."
        Ed Viesturs

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        • Inko
          Inko commented
          Editing a comment
          There is a small cairn at the split for Mt Adams off of the East River trail. Funny that you mention there is a sign at the start of that trail and that most people miss it, because I did Allen a couple weeks ago and I did not see that Mt. Adams sign either.

      • #8
        The parking lot is decently sized but it's the same trailhead and parking lot as Allen Mt. (the High Peak). It can and does fill to capacity at times but this is not a super frequent occurrence.

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        • #9
          The parking lot is not what I would call huge and it does fill up, however, you can park along the road if you are careful about not putting your car in the ditch or blocking traffic. You can also access the East River Trail by parking at the new upper Works trail head. I’m not sure if it adds more or less mileage to the approach by taking the trail instead of the road but it’s an option if the lot is full and you cannot find reasonable roadside parking.

          As others have mentioned, the trail is very easy to follow as long as you don’t initially walk past it. Just keep in mind that this hike is considerably more strenuous than most of the other fire towers. I have not hiked all of them, but this was the toughest one for me, and I would probably consider it one of the tougher non-high peak peaks. That being said I was still able to go tag Vanderwacker immediately afterwards and probably could have added a third onto the day.
          My mind was wandering like the wild geese in the west.

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          • Inko
            Inko commented
            Editing a comment
            The ditch along the roadside is a real danger there. Returning to my car from Allen a couple weeks ago a guy had his car bottomed out along the top of bank just to the south of the lot. What happened was he tried to pull out and his front wheels spun out and dug down into the sand, which caused the underside to then get hung up. I had a 3' length of pipe I gave him to use to start digging under his car and in front of his front wheels. We tried wedging some thicker branches under his front wheels for him to accelerate up onto while me and his girl tried to push, but that did not work. She then had the good idea of trying some lengths of a cloth material under the front wheels for traction and was going to use a dry bag of theirs. Instead of destroying a good bag, I gave them an old blanket of mine to cut some pieces from. At this time two more people came off of the trail and we enlisted them for some more pushing power. Some blanket scraps under the front wheels and four people pushing and we got the vehicle moved up without rear-ending the vehicle in front of him.

            But there was still a problem of the car in front of him being too close for him to just swing out, so he had to cut the steering wheel the other way to back up to make some space. This was very dangerous, as there was little space at the rear passenger wheel for him to back up into without losing it down the bank. Car was manual transmission which was not a good thing for him in this case. I told him he had no more than a foot of space to back up into before losing the wheel and getting stuck on the edge of the bank again, which would have been an even bigger problem than he just got out of; he was worried he was going to reverse too far. He rolled it in a quick jolt of nearly a foot, I yelled STOP, and he then had the room to get back in drive and swing out.

            So yeah, with little or no cell service here, one needs to be very careful about parking along the roadside with certain types of vehicles.

        • #10
          Also an option to park at the Santanoni trailhead about a mile south.

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          • #11
            Don't forget to go in the fire observer's cabin at the bottom. If the front door is locked the back door will probably be open.

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            • #12
              Just measured on caltopo... it's 325 feet from the bend in the trail at the observer's cabin to where the Adams trail starts. Just keep an eye out on your left.

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