Jessup River Wild Forest

The Jessup River Wild Forest (JRWF) area consists of 47,350 acres of State Forest Preserve lands in the towns of Arietta, Indian Lake, Lake Pleasant, and Wells in Hamilton County. The unit is bounded by Route 28 to the north and Route 30 in the southeast, as well as three wilderness areas: West Canada Lakes Wilderness to the west; Siamese Ponds Wilderness to the east, and Silver Lake Wilderness to the south. The state lands in this unit border, or are in close proximity to, the communities of Indian Lake, Piseco, Speculator and Wells. Route 30 bisects the unit and serves as the main access corridor. Many people enjoy hiking to the fire towers on Pillsbury and Snowy mountains, snowmobiling between Piseco Lake and Indian Lake, canoeing on Fall Stream, or camping on Mason Lake. Hunting, fishing, and trapping are also popular activities throughout the unit but particularly in and around Perkins Clearing, the Jessup River and the Miami River.

http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/22599.html

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New York State
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Indian Lake
Lewey Lake
Mason Lake
Perkins Clearing and Speculator Tree Farm Conservation Easement Lands
Pillsbury Mountain
Snowy Mountain

Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Map: Kunjamuk River To Elm Lake

Map: Kunjamuk River To Elm Lake

A popular paddle is from the Kunjamunk Bay in Spectulator up to Elm Lake. Elm Lake is quite scenic and it's a nice day trip, but crossing beaver dams on the Kunjamunk River is often not fun, as the river banks are mucky and water deep around the river banks. About halfway, you can stop at the bridge, and hike back to a man-made cave carved into Cave Mountain. The cave isn't real deep but still an interesting fascination.

Map: Jessup River – Indian Lake to NY 30

Map: Jessup River – Indian Lake to NY 30

The Jessup River Wild Forest (JRWF) area consists of 47,350 acres of State Forest Preserve lands in the towns of Arietta, Indian Lake, Lake Pleasant, and Wells in Hamilton County. The unit is bounded by Route 28 to the north and Route 30 in the southeast, as well as three wilderness areas: West Canada Lakes Wilderness to the west; Siamese Ponds Wilderness to the east, and Silver Lake Wilderness to the south. The state lands in this unit border, or are in close proximity to, the communities of Indian Lake, Piseco, Speculator and Wells. Route 30 bisects the unit and serves as the main access corridor. Many people enjoy hiking to the fire towers on Pillsbury and Snowy mountains, snowmobiling between Piseco Lake and Indian Lake, canoeing on Fall Stream, or camping on Mason Lake. Hunting, fishing, and trapping are also popular activities throughout the unit but particularly in and around Perkins Clearing, the Jessup River and the Miami River.

http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/22599.html

Map: Lewey Lake

Map: Lewey Lake

Located at the southern tip of Long Lake, Lewey Lake is a 2 1/2 mile "quiet water" lake protected by the mountains of the West Canada Lake Wilderness to the east. It is home to the Lewey Lake Campground, and you will either have to camp there, get a day use pass, or have an Empire Passport to explore this lake.

Map: Pillsbury Mountain

Map: Pillsbury Mountain

This is a moderate 3.2 mile roundtrip hike to the summit of Pillsbury Mountain with spectacular views from the fire tower. A good choice for those who want to avoid the crowds that are on other popular mountains. At 3597 feet, it’s one of the highest peaks in the Southwest Adirondacks, and the short climb of 1.6 miles ends at a fire tower with a panoramic vista.

One reason Pillsbury doesn’t see as many visitors as other fire-tower peaks is that it lies off the beaten track. To reach the trailhead, you have to drive for about six miles on dirt roads through land owned by Lyme Timber. The last of these roads is a very rough road and some cars park at Sled Harbor and walk the last 1.2 miles to the trailhead. Also, the fire tower has yet to be refurbished, so the enclosed cab remains closed for now. You can still soak up the views from the tower steps.

The hike begins with a short descent to the Miami River, which is just a small stream here. The trail then climbs steadily and sometimes steeply up the mountain. About one mile up, you will enter a spruce-balsam forest similar to that found on the upper slopes of the High Peaks. Soon the grade eases and the final approach is a pleasant stroll. There is a nearly 1500 feet elevation gain on this hike, so it is a moderate hike.