Adirondack Winter Hike Up Blue Mountain

Blue Mt, located in the geographic center of the Adirondacks, towers as a giant hulk over it’s namesake lake, a beautiful body of water speckled with wooded islands.  The mountain stands at 3750′ in elevation, only a couple of hundred feet shy of a High Peak. The trail to the summit is 2 miles long and a popular destination for summer tourists. I, however, prefer to climb old Blue in the winter, it’s far less crowded and the winter wonderworld above 3000′ is something to behold.

The snow at the upper elevations in the Adirondacks is measured in feet rather than inches. The spruce-fir forest that survives this lofty habitat is caked in snow, to the point where the trees take on otherworldly, eerie shapes.  This white world is dense and claustrophobic, total and utter silence envelopes the intruder. Even wildlife, with the exception of the snowshoe hare, has left for more pleasant territory. This frozen landscape is harsh and wildly spectacular.

Steadily climbing from the trailhead, the summit is gained in an hour more or less. To enjoy the view one must climb the firetower, which does not escape the grip of snow and ice.  From the tower the Adirondack Wilderness spreads out in every direction, with the High Peaks dominating the skyline to the north, Tirrell Pond at the foot of the mountain to the east, the Blue Ridge and West Canada Wildernesses to the south, and Blue Mt Lake, the Eckford Chain, and Raquette to the west. It’s a breathtaking and rugged scene in which I never cease to be amazed at the immensity of it all.

Although likely not to happen, come prepared in case of accident or sudden inclement weather. Snowshoes on the feet are a good idea. A pack loaded with water, food,  flashlight, space blanket, first aid kit, and an extra sweater is good insurance. Come and enjoy, this winter wonderworld offers an experience you won’t soon forget.