Adirondack Hiking Recommendations for Beginners

So you want to start hiking? Well, this post is for you. I got into hiking a few years ago (Back in 2008 I hiked my first Adirondack mountain, Sleeping Beauty, located outside of Lake George and I loved it.)


The only things you really need to get started are a good day pack, a water bottle, snacks, and a good pair of hiking boots are you are all set!


Here are some easy hikes to start out with, all have great views !

Hadley Mountain (firetower)


Distance: 4 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,600 ft
Hike time: 2.5 hours
Location: Hadley, NY outside of Lake George (Lat:43.374 Lon:-73.95)

Sleeping Beauty Mountain


Distance: 7.0 miles round trip (includes an easy road walk to the trailhead)
Elevation Gain: 1,038 ft
Hike time: half a day
Location: Sly Pond Road to Hogtown off of Buttermilk Falls Road off of NY 149 east of Lake George Village (Lat:43.531 Lon:-73.566)

Owl’s Head Mountain


Distance: 1.2 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 737 ft
Hike time: 1.5 hours
Location: Owls Head Lane, off of Route 73 outside of Lake Placid in Keene. (Lat:44 14.863 Lon:73 49.837)

Goodnow Mountain (firetower)


Distance: 3.8 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,040 ft
Hike time: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Location:  Trailhead parking lot is off of route 28N a couple of miles west of Newcomb, NY. (Lat: 43.96018°N Lon: 74.20994°W)

Mt. Jo


Distance: 2.0 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 700 ft
Hike time: 1-3 hours
Location: Heart Lake Adirondack Loj Trailhead: from Exit 30 take Route 73 towards Lake Placid for 26.5 miles. Take a left onto Adirondack Loj Road and continue 5 miles to the Loj and the parking area.  (Lat: 44.18940°N Lon: 73.9673°W)

Moderate Hikes
These are a little bit more challenging and require a half day of hiking. These are some of my all time favorite hikes!

Blue Mountain (firetower)


Distance: 4 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,400 ft
Hike time: 4 hours
Location: State Rt. 30 and State Rt. 28, near Blue Mountain Lake in Hamilton County, near the Adirondack Museum. (Lat: 43.8758095119, Lon: -74.4010268039)

Crane Mountain


Distance: ~6 mile loop
Elevation Gain: 1,300 ft
Hike time: 4-5 hours
Location: Loop trail beginning at the trailhead at Ski Hi Road, Johnsburg, NY. (Lat: 43.54515°N Lon: 73.96237°W)

Noonmark Mountain


Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 2,175 ft
Hike time:  half day
Location: St. Huberts Trailhead. The parking area is just off of Rte 73 just 7.5 miles west from exit 30 off of I-87. (Lat: 44.12890°N Lon: 73.7725°W)

Hurricane Mountain (firetower)


Distance: 6 mi round trip
Elevation Gain: 2,000 ft
Hike time:  half day
Location: Route 9N, Keene, NY  (Lat: 44.23530°N Lon: 73.7111°W)

Cascade Mountain
Want to get started in the high peaks? Cascade is the easiest of the 46 and its where most 46ers get their start.


Distance: 4.8 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,940 ft
Hike time: half day
Location: Trail is on Route 73 about 6.8mi west of Keen and 4.5mi east of Adirondack Loj Road (Lat: 44.21860°N Lon: 73.8606°W)