Adirondack High Peaks

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The Adirondack High Peaks is the name given to 46 mountain peaks in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, United States that were originally believed to comprise all of the Adirondack peaks higher than 4,000 feet (1,219 m).[1] However, later surveying showed that four of the peaks in the group are actually under this elevation, and one additional peak that is close to this elevation had been overlooked. Due to tradition, no mountains were removed from or added to the group as a result of the revised elevation estimates.

All except four are located in central and northern Essex County, primarily south of Lake Placid and Keene Valley. The others are just to the west in Franklin County. All the summits are on land owned by New York State as part of its Forest Preserve. Forty-two are in a vast tract of nearly 300,000 acres (1,200 km2) known as the High Peaks Wilderness Area, subdivided into central (26 peaks) and outer (16 peaks) zones. Nine of the peaks in the outer zone are in an area formerly known as the Dix Mountain Wilderness Area that was added to the High Peaks Wilderness in 2018.[2] Giant Mountain and Rocky Peak Ridge are in the adjacent Giant Mountain Wilderness Area. Whiteface Mountain, which has a downhill ski area and a toll road to its summit, and Esther Mountain are set slightly to the north, in Wilmington.

Those who have climbed all 46 High Peaks are eligible to join the Adirondack Forty-Sixers club.[3] Neither Mount Marcy nor Algonquin Peak, the two highest, require technical skills, but Algonquin Peak is regarded as the more challenging climb. Twenty peaks have no official trail to the top, although rough informal routes, commonly referred to as "herd paths," have developed over the years and no true bushwhacking is required on any of the peaks, although some are still quite primitive.

Atop the highest peaks, above the tree line, there is a total of 87 acres (35 ha) of extraordinarily fragile alpine ecosystem; the amount of this ecosystem is constantly changing due to variation in the climate from year to year.

The region contains many alpine lakes and meadows, wetlands, streams, and forests. The Eastern High Peaks Wilderness area is the most regulated area. Fires are not permitted; dogs must be leashed; overnight groups are limited to eight people and day groups to 15; and bear-resistant food canisters are required from April through November.

The High Peaks[edit]

Mountain Height (ft / m) Prominence (ft) Rank
Mount Marcy 5,344 / 1,629 4,914 1
Algonquin Peak 5,114 / 1,559 2,100 2
Mount Haystack 4,960 / 1,512 840 3
Mount Skylight 4,920 / 1,500 578 4
Whiteface Mountain 4,867 / 1,483 3,110 5
Dix Mountain 4,857 / 1,480 2,830 6
Gray Peak 4,840 / 1,475 102 7
Iroquois Peak 4,840 / 1,475 151 8
Basin Mountain 4,827 / 1,471 725 9
Gothics 4,736 / 1,444 699 10
Mount Colden 4,714 / 1,437 876 11
Giant Mountain 4,627 / 1,410 2,953 12
Nippletop 4,620 / 1,408 1,380 13
Santanoni Peak 4,607 / 1,404 2,430 14
Mount Redfield 4,606 / 1,404 242 15
Wright Peak 4,580 / 1,396 270 16
Saddleback Mountain 4,515 / 1,376 380 17
Panther Peak 4,442 / 1,354 275  18
Table Top Mountain 4,427 / 1,349 430 19
Rocky Peak Ridge 4,420 / 1,347 640 20
Macomb Mountain 4,405 / 1,343 584 21
Armstrong Mountain 4,400 / 1,341 98 22
Hough Peak 4,400 / 1,341 374 23
Seward Mountain 4,361 / 1,329 2,030 24
Mount Marshall 4,360 / 1,329 493 25
Allen Mountain 4,340 / 1,323 640 26
Big Slide Mountain 4,240 / 1,292 1,049 27
Esther Mountain 4,240 / 1,292 302 28
Upper Wolfjaw Mountain 4,185 / 1,276 280 29
Lower Wolfjaw Mountain 4,175 / 1,273 663 30
Street Mountain 4,166 / 1,270 1,280 31
Phelps Mountain 4,161 / 1,268 200 32
Donaldson Mountain 4,140 / 1,262 138 33
Seymour Mountain 4,120 / 1,256 1,020 34
Sawteeth 4,100 / 1,250 490 35
Cascade Mountain 4,098 / 1,249 1,180 36
South Dix 4,060 / 1,237 164 37
Porter Mountain 4,059 / 1,237 330 38
Mount Colvin 4,057 / 1,236 750 39
Mount Emmons 4,040 / 1,231 102 40
Dial Mountain 4,020 / 1,225 164 41
Grace Peak 4,012 / 1,223 319 42
Blake Peak 3,960 / 1,207 558 43
Cliff Mountain 3,960 / 1,207 466 44
Nye Mountain 3,895 / 1,187 130 45
Couchsachraga Peak 3,820 / 1,164 250 46

Some surveys list MacNaughton Mountain at 4,000 feet (1,219 m), and some argue that it should be included in the High Peaks. However, more recent surveys list the mountain at 3,983 feet (1,214 m).[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hiking Challenges: The Adirondack 46ers". Adirondack.net. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  2. ^ "High Peaks Wilderness Area Unit Management Plan". New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  3. ^ "How to Join". ADk 46ers. Retrieved October 31, 2016.
  4. ^ "MacNaughton Mountain". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2012-12-20.

External links[edit]