Trail Description and Winter Conditions
Blue Mountain is one of the taller mountains in the Adirondack Park and one of the most popular in the Hamilton County Region. Affording outstanding views and a decent snowshoe challenge to summit, it attracts large numbers of people all year long. Blue is also home to an Adirondack Fire Tower, a small piece of region history.
From the trailhead you will quickly come to an old access road which allows for easy snowshoeing and a great warm up to the day. However this doesn't last, the trail quickly starts to gain elevation and crosses a very attractive frozen stream bed along the way, where ice formations are quite unique. The climbing really kicks in at about 1.25 miles and continues to be quite steep as it passes over open rock slabs. These slab rocks tend to be very icy, especially when you can't see the ice under the snow – pay extra close attention on the descent. The steep terrain will leave way for a gentle hike along the ridge to the fire tower on the summit. There are smaller views from the land and if you poke around there are others. The best views are from the stairs on the tower itself, the cab of the fire tower is closed and locked. The old observer's cabin is just over the rise.
Expect the Blue Mountain Trail to be heavily used, even when there seems to be few others on the trail. The route is broken out and hardened regularly by locals and visitors.
How to get there
From the intersection of Route 30 and 28 in Blue Mountain Lake, follow Route 30 toward Long Lake for around 1.5 miles to the trailhead parking on the right. The trailhead is at the top of the long hill past the Adirondack Museum.
Approximate Time Round Trip:
Families with Kids: 4 to 5 hours
Experienced Snowshoers: 2.5 to 3 hours
Out of Shape Snowshoers: 3 to 4 hours
Difficulty: 1=easiest, 5=hardest
Four; Blue Mountain is a very steep mountain in sections. There is typically heavy icy on the steeper portions due to running water, traction can be difficult making certain sections fun but slightly scary too.
Additional Important Information:
Climbing the fire tower in winter can be dangerous due to heavy winds, wind chill, and icy conditions, be very careful. Under low snow conditions, the upper portion of the climb can be very slippery and icy.