Puffer Pond is located about smack dab in the center of this loop. Aside from a bit of elevation change on one end, the distance isn't much different to do the loop rather than go out and back, but we'll leave that decision up to you.
How to get there
From the intersection of Routes 28 and 30 in Indian Lake follow Route 30 toward Lake Pleasant. Continue for just under 0.5 miles to Big Brook Road. Follow that for 7.8 miles to King's Flow Parking Area. This is the trailhead for Chimney Mountain, Johns Pond, and Puffer Pond.
Please note: This is an informal pay-to-use parking lot — pay the $2 fee at the small kiosk to access the Puffer Pond loop. Also note that King's Flow is bordered by privately owned cabins, so there is no public paddling access to the waterbody.
From the trailhead heading in a clockwise direction, you will start a very interesting hike through an attractive forest. The terrain starts out flat, crosses a sizable brook, and follows along the shore of a wetland area. Take time here to look around for signs of wildlife and possibly do a bit of birding. Not long after the wetland the trail begins to climb moderately to an intersection with the John Pond Trail that comes in on your left. Continue straight and climb to a high saddle on the shoulder of Bullhead Mountain.
Past the saddle the trail will descend quite quickly to the Shore of Puffer Pond. Once at the pond the trail splits, left leads over to Thirteenth Lake; take a right and follow the pond. As you pass by the pond you will begin to follow Puffer Pond Brook on an old carriage road, a delightful section of trail. The trail stays fairly level as it sweeps hard north and comes out to a view out over Kings Flow. The remainder of this is relatively flat and quite scenic as Kings Flow keeps coming into view. You will exit the trail out onto a grassy field and come out at the trailhead parking where you started.
5.3 miles for entire loop
Family with Young Kids
- 1.5 hours
- 1 hour
Out of Shape Hiker
- 1.25 hours
This would be an excellent snowshoe but a rather challenging cross-country ski for most people yet it does get done. It doesn't get a ton of winter use, an occasional hiker climbing Bullhead Mountain or Puffer Mountain, maybe, so the trail would be in a typical untouched condition, making travel a bit slower and more difficult.