Castle Rock Loop
A great family outing
Initially you will be following a private dirt road, please stay on the marked route. The trail markers are on the power poles, but when in doubt keep right. After a short distance you will leave the road and start on a foot trail. Within a few hundred feet of leaving the road you will come to split in the trail. Follow the trail left over a small foot bridge. I have this route going clockwise for ease of travel reasons. This bridge crosses the outlet to Chub Pond, which you will be able to see shortly. The view over Chub Pond is a decent one but you will get a better view later from the other side.
Continuing on along a nice mellow trail you will come to an intersection with a spur trail to Blue Mountain Lake. This is a short 0.3 mile descent to the shore of the big lake, if the need strikes you. At the trail intersection you will start a steep continuous climb up the shoulder of Castle Rock. The ascent to the Castle Rock trail is very steep. Above the steep section it moderates to a nice grade.
As you crest the steeper section you will be able to see the cliffs of Castle Rock in front of you. The trail takes a hard right and almost heads back in the same direction you just came from before it takes a hard left toward the cliffs. This section of trail is quite amazing. That is if you like rock walls, caves, and formations. There is a trail through a small cave that comes out the other side.
Follow the trail north until you come to another intersection with the yellow trail. Here you will need to go right. From here the climb gets much steeper with large steps over rocks and roots. In short time you will be on the open rock summit of Castle Rock overlooking Blue Mountain Lake. After you have relaxed and soaked up the views return to the last intersection and follow the red trail to the right. You will drop down slightly to a fork in the red trail. Left leads to Upper Sargent Pond and right leads back to the trailhead.
Continue on following the red trail as you are lead through open woods on a side slope, natural springs run off Peaked Mountain. If the weather is warm or the season not perfect, wet trails can and will be encountered. The trail at this point is rolling hills eventually you will at the shores of Chub Pond again. This time however you are on the better side. The views over the pond are much nicer as you look down the inlet from the trail.
From here continue on a moderate to easy trail as it leads back to the first split you had this day – near the footbridge. Follow left back to the road and back to the trailhead.
575’, easy to steep
Distance as a Loop:
Family of Four with Kids: 3.5 hours loop
Experienced Hiker: 2.5 hours loop
Out of Shape Hiker: 3.0 hours loop
From the intersection of Route 30 and Route 28N in the Town of Long Lake follow Route 30/28N toward Blue Mountain Lake. Continue into Blue Mountain Lake and pass by the Adirondack Museum. Just pat the Adirondack Museum and locate Maple Lodge Road. Follow this rod to the hiker parking and the trail register; park in designated area only please.
This trail is typically broken out by midday after a storm but can become quite slippery as you approach the summit. This is a great snowshoe, but could be used for skiing in the clockwise direction only. However, the skier needs to be very good. The steep section from near the lake to the summit of Castle Rock is best snowshoed.
Information and photos provided by Spencer Morrissey of Inca-Pah-Cho Wilderness Guides – 607.267.3474