West Mountain is a former fire tower peak, but even without the steel structure offers good views from its partially open summit. The length and the fact that the access road to the trailhead is closed limit its use by a large number of visitors.
From the trailhead you will drop slightly into an open hardwood forest on a trail that is quite narrow and a bit overgrown in areas. Soon you reach the trail that comes in from Brown's Tract Ponds. At this intersection take a right and follow an old woods road that is in excellent condition and flat snowshoeing. You will pass by several other side trails, most of which might not even be noticeable in winter, be sure to stay on the main trail. Another trail to Raquette Lake (the lake) will come in on the right.
Once you leave the woods road the trail becomes slightly more difficult over rolling hills and eventually to some very steep terrain. The steep terrain will bring you to a moderate walk along the ridge and then to the summit of West Mountain. The true summit is slightly in the woods but the views are in an open area just prior.
Distance Round Trip:
Approximate Time Round Trip:
- Families with Kids: Not recommended
- Experienced Snowshoers: 6 to 8 hours
- Out of Shape Snowshoers: Not recommended
From the intersection of Route 28 and County Route 2 in Raquette Lake follow County Route 2 into the Village of Raquette Lake. Continue through the village to Brown's Tract Road also known as Uncas Road. This is a season use road and is closed in winter as a snowmobile trail. You will have to snowshoe the remaining 0.5 miles to the trailhead.
Difficulty: 1=easiest, 5=hardest
Four: Mainly due to distance and lack of winter use.