ATTENTION: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the state Department of Environmental Conservation has announced that all public fire towers in New York will be closed.
All public trails are still open and fire tower peaks can be climbed, but hikers are advised to maintain a distance of at least 6 feet apart - which the fire tower cabs are too small to accommodate. The DEC also recommends hikers avoid busy trailheads and explore hikes and outdoor adventures close to home.
Discover historic fire towers
Historic fire tower hikes are a great way to go hiking in the Adirondacks while also exploring the history of our region. Fire tower hikes are especially fun for families and children, adding a unique element of discovery to your day of hiking. Once upon a time, the towers were used as lookouts to watch for forest fires. A number are still intact and offer great views for eager hikers. You can even get creative and have fun by challenging yourself to visit all of the fire towers in the Adirondacks! Do it in one vacation or keep coming back!
Take the Fire Tower Challenge
There are five Hamilton County fire towers: Blue Mountain, Owls Head, Pillsbury Mountain, Snowy Mountain, and Wakely Mountain fire towers. All are open to the public.
To complete the challenge, you must climb these five mountains, document the date, and fill out a comment for each summit reached. Climbing every tower is not required in order to receive your patch.
Download the Fire Tower Challenge Guide and Instructions.
Leave No Trace
The magic of the Adirondacks is the result of previous generations taking a long view and protecting the mountains, lakes, and rivers within the Blue Line. That tradition continues today as we support and encourage everyone to practice Leave No Trace ethics, which help protect the lands and waters of the Adirondacks.