Hiking near The Lodge
Explore 600 acres of ski trails with many interesting views and destinations including Hooper’s Garnet Mine, the Sugar House and Putty Pond. Or hike to backcountry spots in the Siamese Pond Wilderness area on well maintained and well marked trails. Choose from an all day climb topping out a 4000 ft. high peak, a leisurely walk in the woods, or a fishing adventure-hike to a remote pond. Garnet Hill Lodge is the ideal jumping off point for outdoor southern Adirondack hiking.
Right outside the door, guests can begin hikes and trail runs to nearby Hooper Mine, William Blake Pond, Balm of Gilead Mountain, and trails into the Siamese Ponds Wilderness Area. Rising right out of Thirteenth Lake are “The Garnet Hills” – Ruby, Peaked, Slide, Little Thirteenth, and Hour Pond mountains. The Hooper Garnet Mine is an historic mine which closed in 1928 after 25 years of operation. There are still many remnants of the mining operation to be seen along the way and at the quarry itself. Hikers can retrieve garnets from the rock to this day.
A short drive (40 min.) to the state trailhead at Tawahus can access trails into the Adirondack High Peaks area. The High Peaks is 50 square miles of mountain wilderness and world class hiking adventures. Hikers can access trails to Mt. Marcy, Algonquin, Mt. Colden, and other mountains in the area. Also in the High Peaks Area is the former great camp Santanoni. The old road leading into the camp is a great walk or mountain bike ride. There are also horse and wagon trips into Santanoni.
Also near Garnet Hill are great hikes to Blue, Snowy, Crane, and Chimney mountains. Hikers climbing Chimney are rewarded not only with a great summit view, but also an opportunity to explore a network of ice caves located near the summit. Even during August there is ice in the caves.
The Garnet Hill Trail Map has a sample of some hikes on Lodge lands as well as in the state land that surrounds us.
William Blake Pond, The Nature Trail, and the Old Hooper Mine: All these trails begin across from our ski shop. Begin on the uphill driveway across from the ski shop adjacent to the tennis courts. Straight up the driveway a turnoff will lead to the Old Hooper Mine. The Hooper Mine is a part of Garnet Hill history when the area was mined for Garnets. Old cellar holes, foundations, mine equipment and the Hooper mine itself remain to remind us of the mining era. Look for Garnets while you are there, some still remain! Just before the turnoff for the Hooper Mine is the beginning of the Nature trail, on the right side of the driveway. Nature Trail guidebooks are available at the Lodge. Follow the Nature Trail to its end and you will be at William Blake Pond. An informal path (marked with a ribbon) leads from the pond back to the old Hooper Mine, making a nice loop.
Trail to the Lake: It’s about a mile from the lodge to the lake, downhill going and uphill coming back. To walk to the lake begin on the left side of the front lawn and walk down Matt and Jeff trail (see the cross country ski trails map). Follow the red markers off the Matt and Jeff trail eventually crossing 13th Lake Road and the Old Farm Road down the Garnet Hill Beach Road. This is a nice little hike for guests wanting an after dinner stroll or new guests familiarizing themselves with the lodge and its lands.
Balm of Gilead Cliffs: This is an exciting hike with one of the best views for the least amount of effort in the area. Begin across from the ski shop the same as the beginning of the Nature Trail. Follow the Nature Trail. Where this trail leads away up to William Blake Pond, continue straight an additional 75 yards past a house on your right. The trail up Balm of Gilead begins left just past a stream crossing. This hike is about 2 miles round trip.
Peaked Mountain and Peaked Mountain Pond: The trail up Peaked can begin at the state beach, hiking along the lake shore to where the trail ascends up Peaked brook. Hikers can also take a canoe from the Garnet Hill Beach across the lake and begin hiking on the far shore near where the brook enters the lake. Taking a canoe across the lake cuts out about a mile of hiking along the lake from the state beach. The trail will first come to Peaked Pond, a popular fishing destination. To continue up to the summit, walk to your right along the lakeshore. There are beautiful views which extend 360 degrees, with views of the High Peaks, Ruby Mt. and Gore Mt. as well. This trail is about 3 miles one way.
The Wilderness: Hour Pond, Puffer Pond, Sacandaga River, and Siamese Ponds: The main trailhead which leads into this wilderness area is the starting point for many trails. It begins at the end of The Old Farm Road just past the Garnet Hill Beach road. These are all popular fishing or hiking destinations. Topographic maps of the entire area are available at the lodge.
Crane Mountain: This is one of the most interesting hikes in the Southern Adirondacks. There is a pond near the summit, a succession of ladders up cliff faces and and the opportunity to make a loop, climbing up one trail to the peak and down another from the pond. The trailhead is off the South Johnsburg Road near Thurman. To reach the trailhead go south on Rt.28 to Wevertown and turn right on Rt.8. Go about a mile into the South Johnsburg Road. Look for a right hand turn after about 4 miles directing you to the trailhead parking. This is a great day hike which covers a wide variety of terrain.
There is so much to explore at Garnet Hill and in the surrounding wilderness. Make plans to stay with us today!