Hike to the Summit of Phelps Mountains

Adirondack Loj

Phelps Mountain is an easy hike in the heart of the Adirondack High Peaks with fantastic views all around.

The hike starts at Adirondack Loj in the High Peaks Information Center parking lot. From there, follow the signs for Phelps Mountain/Mt. Marcy. The trail to Phelps Mountain follows the Marcy trail for the first three miles.

The first two miles to Marcy Dam are relatively flat, with the elevation gain picking up in the next mile after. The trail will eventually cross Phelps Brook. In early winter, when the brook hasn't frozen over enough yet, you can cross at the high water bridge (about a quarter of a mile before the foot crossing, and well-signed). Otherwise, the regular foot crossing is fine once winter sets in or in summer months if the water level isn't too high.

After third mile, you will come to the Phelps Mountain junction. From here, it's one mile to the summit. Be aware though, that most of the elevation gain is in the final mile.

In the winter, bring microspikes or crampons. If snow accumulation is 8 inches or more, it is a requirement in the High Peaks Wilderness to have snowshoes with you AND wear them. You can and will be fined by a ranger if you don't have them! The final mile can me very icy at times, so traction devices are essential.

The view at the summit is phenomenal, with nearby Algonquin Peak, Mt. Marcy, and Colden Mountain being right in front of you.

Pack List

  • Daypack
  • Snowshoes (in winter)
  • Microspikes/crampons (in winter)
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RT Distance 8 Miles
Elevation Gain 2100 Feet
Activities Snowshoeing, Hiking
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Year Round
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Forest
Lake
Scenic

Reviews

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Small Summit Big Views

I love the perspective of looking at Mount Colden (another Adirondack high peak) from Phelps! Anyone working on your Adirondack 46 should combine this with Tabletop!


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