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Tranquil Winter Hiking in the Adirondacks

Posted in General, Things to Do, Winter at Garnet Hill

Our tranquil four-season lodge rests in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, home to some of the best winter hikes in Upstate New York. At Garnet Hill Lodge, we enjoy getting out there no matter what the season.  Winter hiking in the Adirondacks is a peaceful, challenging, and ultimately rewarding experience. Several multi-mile hiking trails can be accessed from Garnet Hill Lodge’s backyard, including the spectacular Balm of Gilead. After a memorable afternoon in the vast Upstate New York wilderness, return to our cozy lodge for a steaming cup of hot cocoa, stories around a crackling fireplace, and eventually peaceful slumber.


What to Wear

It’s essential to pack the right clothing and gear before winter hiking in the Adirondacks. Not every trail is a grueling, steep journey to the top of a mountain, but you always want to be dressed appropriately for the weather. Here’s a short list of items to pack for your day-long journey into the Adirondacks Mountains:


  • Thermal, waterproof underwear
  • Two pairs of thick, wool socks
  • Tough, waterproof boots
  • Snowpants
  • Long-sleeve “ColdGear Armour”
  • Heavy sweatshirt
  • Durable, waterproof winter coat
  • Warm stocking hat
  • Waterproof winter gloves
  • Backpack with an emergency kit
  • Dry food
  • Bottled water


Trail Safety

Always remember to plan ahead in case of an emergency. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has a detailed list of winter hiking in the Adirondacks safety tips. We highly suggest giving it a thorough read, even if you’re planning just a two-mile hike. If you have any more questions about the area’s terrain and wildlife, simply ask our on-site staff at the Garnet Hill Outdoor Center for pointers before departure.


Best Local Trails

We have hand selected easy, moderate, and difficult area hiking trails for prospective guests aiming to embark on a winter wilderness excursion. Let’s start with a simple one: Clear Pond Trail. Clear Pond is a scenic, 18-mile mountain drive from Garnet Hill Lodge. The trail itself is a mostly-flat, 2.2-mile out-and-back journey to peaceful Clear Pond. Lush forestry and snow-capped mountains entirely enclose the pond. If you brought your favorite four-legged friend along, this trail is perfect for a wintertime stroll.


Arguably our favorite local hiking trail is Balm of Gilead. Our guests can pick up this splendid two-mile, out-and-back trail from Garnet Hill Lodge’s front door. While it’s shorter than Clear Pond Trail, it features a steeper incline on the trek to genuinely stunning valley overlooks. The Puffer Pond Trail via beautiful Kings Flow is a 4.7-mile out-and-back journey that’s is equally challenging and breathtaking. You’ll start at Kings Flow and hike on an ungroomed trail in search of peaceful, secluded Puffer Pond.


Premier Adirondack Mountain Lodge

The perfect place to dry off, warm up, and enjoy a hot meal after a full day of winter hiking in the Adirondacks is Garnet Hill Lodge. The ultra-talented culinary team here at the Log House Restaurant and Pub serve spectacular farm-raised rainbow trout, seared Pekin duck leg, and local beer-battered white fish. Your adventurous Upstate New York getaway would be incomplete without complimentary cross-country and snowshoe passes for our beautiful on-site trail system. Give us a call today at 1-518-251-2444 to book an overdue winter wonderland vacation to Garnet Hill Lodge!

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Garnet Hill Lodge

Garnet Hill Lodge