A couple of weeks ago I hiked up Goodnow Mountain, on a beautiful clear afternoon, that by the time I reached the mountain it started to cloud up and the humidity started to increase. I had previously in the morning attempted to hike up Giant Mountain in the High Peaks, and wanted to do something easier for the afternoon.
Goodnow Mountain is located at the SUNY ESF (Environmental Science-Forestry) College, just south of the Adirondack High Peaks on NY 28, just to the west of Newcomb. It’s a bit of a drive from the Adirondack Northway from the east or even a little ways from Long Lake to the west, but well worth it for the views.
About a quarter mile up the trail you pass an interesting tree grown over a rock. This is not as uncommon as you might think in the Adirondacks where the soils are poor and the ground is rocky, and trees seek to put down more roots to pick up nuetrants.
At about 1/2 mile you reach the old woods road that at one time, decades ago, provide vehicular access to the tower for forest rangers. Part of the trail is flat, but then it keeps steeper and erosion is noticable on the old road bed, no longer passable by anything then ATV in an emergency.
Further up the mountain, the trail follows a series of boardwalks that keeps most of the trail out of the mud and the muck.
Then you reach an old abandoned barn, a well, and some interesting old debris like what appears to be a tank from a hot water heater storage unit.
You ascend a ledge, with some limited views to the south.
Then their is a thick planation of White Pines along the trail as you make one relatively short ascent to the firetower.
Eventually at the last possible moment, you break through the White Pines to see the Goodnow Firetower, and almost instantly want to start climbing it for the views, unless your suffering from heat exhaustion, then you might want to look for the relatively limited shaded but open sections on the mountain.
SUNY ESF has restored to the Ranger’s cabin, and the porch is a farely popular place to sit, enjoy the view, beat the heat for a few moments.
There are many interesting views from the firetower. Here are the High Peaks looking North, the Vanderwhacker Wild Forest to the east, Kempshall Mountain / Long Lake to the west, and Blue Mountain / Blue Ridge to the South.
Here is a map of the hike.
View Goodnow Mountain in a larger map