Added by Aellon Krider
Hike to camp and trek to Sugarloaf Mountain the next day. Loop back to camp easily, passing by a tranquil waterfall and an old quarry along the way.
Begin by parking at the end of Mink Road in Elka Park (GPS:N42 08.593, W74 09.479). It will be a .7 mile hike to camp. Follow the rocky woods road to the junction where there is a SPRING sign. Continuing straight will take you to the water source. If you do not need water, turn left when you see the SPRING sign to turn on to the Yellow trail. Follow the Yellow trail to the junction where there is a wooden trail sign, which tells you to take the Blue trail about .2 miles to the Mink Hollow shelter, which will be on your right.
If you prefer to camp in a tent, there is a marked path on your left to a primitive campsite. If you continue on the Blue trail for about 100 feet, there is another path to an additional primitive campsite. These site paths have reflective rings on the markers so they are easily identifiable at night.
For a day hike from camp to Sugarloaf Mountain the next morning, hike back to the wooden trail sign, which shows that Sugarloaf Mountain is about 1 mile away (1200' ascent). Turn right at that sign. The trail markers will show Red and Blue markers to start, then continue on to the Red trail, which is Devil's Path, and is also part of Long Path.
This is a steep ascent with a lot of scrambling all the way to the peak of Sugarloaf Mountain (3800'). Gaining elevation quickly pays off when you look back at the breathtaking view as you are hiking. At the top, there is a short Yellow trail to the right that will take you to a "scenic view." Though a few trees block most of that view, it is a nice spot to take a break.
Return to the Red trail and continue further to descend the eastern side of Sugarloaf. It is 1.2 miles to the next junction. Turn left at the junction and follow the Blue trail toward the waterfall and old quarry.
The Blue trail is a 4.3 mile loop which brings you back to the beginning of the hike where the Mink Hollow shelter is located. Within the first mile, there is a stream to cross in order to continue on to the Blue trail. Before crossing, follow the foot path alongside the mossy stream to see the peaceful waterfall. There are plenty of rocks nearby for a picnic.
Return to the Blue trail and cross the stream. You will be able to see trail markers on trees across the water. Soon you will pass through the remains of Dibble's Quarry. Previous hikers have constructed stone thrones to take in the views like royalty.
After this stop, power through the rest of the loop. There is not much elevation gain or loss on the way back, so the miles go by quickly. Soon enough you will be back at camp ready to relax for the rest of the day!
- Hiking boots (will be muddy after rainfall)
- First aid kit
- Camp supplies: tent/hammock, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, water filter, poncho, etc.
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