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Giant Mountain Wilderness The 46 ADK High Peaks

Hiking in Adirondack Park

Giant Mountain Wilderness

Owls Head Lookout

 

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The trail to Owl Head Lookout begins east of Keene on NY 9N, the road to Elizabethtown. If you were to follow the trail to its end, you'd wind up after seven miles on Giant Mountain, one of the Adirondack High PeaksThis is a moderate hike of nearly 2.5 miles just to Owls Head Lookout.

Because most hikers take shorter routes to Giant Mountain, this trail is used primarily by those hiking to Owl Head Lookout. This hike takes you on an ascent of nearly 1300 feet in 2.45 miles to Owl Head Lookout.  The final 0.1 mile is very steep however you are rewarded with fantastic views.  The elevation at the lookout is 2519 feet.

This hike begins on private land. From the parking lot, walk down the dirt road for a few hundred yards, then turn left into the woods. The trail climbs gradually through a stand of hemlocks and comes to the state-land boundary at 0.4 miles. It continues to be level, with small ups and downs, to Slide Brook at 1.0 mile.

Just after the brook, the trail crosses a tributary stream, climbs to a small cliff on the left, and crosses the tributary again at 1.5 miles. After a few more crossings of the tributary, it resumes climbing through open woods, reaching a short spur trail that leads to the lookout after 2.35 miles of hiking.

The spur trail is steep and eroded, but it's only 0.1 mile long. The lookout offers views in nearly every direction. Peaks in the immediate neighborhood include Giant Mountain, Rocky Peak Ridge, Green, Knob Lock, and Hurricane Mountain (the one with the fire tower). The open ledges offer one of the best views of huge slides on the east face of Giant Mountain. Looking east, you can see the Champlain Valley and the Green Mountains of Vermont.

Directions: From the junction of NY 9N and NY 73 just south of Keene hamlet, drive east on NY 9N for 5.5 miles to the trailhead on the right, marked by a wooden sign of the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

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