In a quiet corner of the Adirondacks sits Kane Mountain. A 60-foot fire tower was constructed here in 1925, making it a very attractive destination. Two different trails lead to the summit, giving hikers the opportunity to do a loop or just a simple out-and-back hike. Either way, you can’t go wrong.
Although Kane Mountain is outside Hamilton County, it’s location makes it a fine destination for those in Piseco or Arietta. Plus, it's a very scenic drive down Route 10 from Piseco, so the trip is definitely worth it.
How to get there
From the intersection of Route 8 and Route 10 in Piseco, follow Route 10 south toward Pine Lake. Just under 2 miles past Pine Lake, take a left onto Green Lake Road. Then, drive Green Lake Road to the trailhead, which will be on the left.
*NOTE: the old trail leading from Schoolhouse Road has been closed. Please only use the access off Green Lake Road.*
By the numbers
The East Trail “the short one”
- Distance: 0.9 miles
- Elevation gain: 620 feet
- Mountain elevation: 2,185 feet
The North Trail “the long one”
Distance: 1.2 miles
The shorter East Trail begins climbing immediately. It’s layout follows an old jeep road, but is moderately graded, gaining just over 600 feet of elevation in less than a mile. Even though this hike is off the beaten path, it’s well used. For the first 0.6 miles, the trail twists and turns through an attractive forest of mature hardwoods. It straightens out after 0.6 miles and as it approaches the summit, it becomes level, passing by the old observer’s cabin. The fire tower is just through the trees.
The longer North Trail brings you to the same location, with just a few more steps added to your hike. The grade is still mild. The trail is rocky so careful footing is needed.
Views will only be found from the tower, as trees block most of the summit. However, for those who climb the stairs, sweeping vistas of the Canada Lake area and wild forests beyond await. On a good, clear day, the Catskills can be seen to the south.
Kane Mountain in winter
The short dirt road to the trailhead may or may not be plowed adequately for many cars in winter; park in a safe location.
Due to the rocky terrain, traction is highly recommended when the trail is icy or snowy. This would be an excellent beginner snowshoe hike, but may not be suited for cross-country skiing.