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.
Hit the trails
Spring and summer are beautiful times to enjoy the scenic wonders of the Lake Champlain region! From scenic history walks to bigger challenges, the region has a beautiful variety of hikes and walks.
Let history surround you
There are many leisurely historic walking tours through one of the area's eclectic lakeside communities, with some amazing collections of architecture. We never get tired of exploring the historic town of Essex, featured on the National Register of Historic Places and one of the few remaining villages in America featuring intact pre-Civil War architecture. The La Chute River Walk Trail is another local favorite for exploring the natural and industrial milling history along the La Chute River near Fort Ticonderoga.
Explore the Champlain Area Trails system
One of the gems of the central Champlain Valley is the scenic Champlain Area Trails or CATS, as it is affectionately known. CATS features 87 trails totaling over 200 miles of easy-to-moderate paths for nature lovers, hikers, bird watchers, cross-country skiers, and snowshoers to explore along the Adirondack Coast. Find the trail map here.
Take to the hills — or the peaks!
The area has some beautiful rolling hills, but for bigger challenges, we love the many area trails and enjoy unforgettable views of Lake Champlain, the High Peaks of the Adirondacks, and the Green and White Mountains across the water. We're partial to heading up Split Rock Wild Forest Trails – a 6.5-mile loop within the 3,700 acre Split Rock Mountain Wild Forest and part of the largest tract of underdeveloped and forested land along the New York State shoreline of Lake Champlain. One of the more difficult trails in the area is Hurricane Mountain, offering a 5.2 mile round trip hike with big rewards – the summit features 360-degree views of Lake Champlain and the High Peaks.
Leave No Trace
For more hiking ideas, take a look at several other area trails below: