Added by Rebecca Nichols
This traverse has many beautiful viewpoints. You will also walk a portion of the Escarpment Trail.
You will need to spot cars for the described hike however, there are a few ways of approaching this hike.
Start at the end of Barnum Road. You need to walk down the driveway to the first house. Then take the trail off to the left.Once you start up the side path you will see a DEC sign. Follow the path. There is private land surrounding the trail, therefore, do not leave the path. At just under the 0.5 mile mark you will reach the registration box. As you approach the summit of Camel's Hump, you will see the 3,500' sign.
At a little over 2.0 miles you will encounter the summit of Camel's Hump. From Camel's Hump you can see Thomas Cole Mountain to the southeast, and Windham High Peak from to the northeast. As you continue you will descend down to the col. As you start the climb up Thomas Cole Mountain, you will see a side-trail to the south. This will give you a nice view of Plateau Mountain and Hunter Mountain in the background. At about 3.06 miles you will reach the summit of Thomas Cole Mountain. The summit is not obvious, as it is not marked and there is no view.
Continuing on .07 miles for a fairly gentle grade you will reach Black Dome. There is a nice ledge that offers some dramatic views of part of the Devil's Path. As you descend Black dome you will follow the path to the Lockwood Gap. This is a gap between Black Dome and Blackhead. The steepest part of this hike will be your ascent up Blackhead.
Once you reach Blackhead take note of two nice viewpoints on the mountain. From here you will continue on the Escarpment trail. At about 3.1 miles from Blackhead you will reach a nice spot called Acra Point. Continuing on at just under 1.0 mile you will reach a junction. You will pass it and continue 2.6 miles to Windham High Peak however, keep note as you will return to this later.
Windham also offers two great viewpoints. One you will be able to look back at the Blackhead Range you just traversed. The other view point on a very clear day will allow you to see the Empire State Plaza towers in Albany. Now you will retrace your steps 2.6 miles back to the junction I described above. You will now turn at this junction and follow it to the other parking area at Big Hollow Road.
All four of these mountians, Thomas Cole, Black Dome, Blackhead & Windham are part of the Catskill 3500 Challenge. This challenge consists of 35 peaks in the Catskills over 3500 feet.
- Hiking Boots
- Snowshoes (Winter)
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