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Hiking in Adirondack Park

Central Adirondacks Vanderwhacker Mountain
Hiking in Adirondack Park
Central Adirondacks

Wild Forest


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The 92,000 acre Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest is located in the central section of Adirondack Park. This wild forest borders or contains 44 ponds and other small lakes, as well as portions of the Hudson River and much of the Boreas River.  Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest lies both east and west of NY 28N in western Essex County.

The main attractions of the area are the lakes and ponds, the Boreas River and Vanderwhacker Mountain. The Boreas River, a designated scenic river, is truly a beautiful Adirondack river. The Wolf Pond, Durgin Brook and Lester Flow sections of the upper Boreas are well known to bird clubs. These are plant and bird life communities of unusual interest, particularly in the more boreal forms.

The 3386 foot Vanderwhacker Mountain with its fire tower and spectacular views of the high peaks is a very popular hiking destination.  The summit offers possibly the nicest panorama of the high peaks from the southern Adirondacks.  The drive to the trailhead along Moose Club Road is very rough. Other popular trails within the area lead to Stony Pond, Cheney Pond, Lester Flow, Rankin Pond, and the Boreas River.

For those adventurers looking for more of a challenge and remoteness in this wild forest can try bushwhacking to the summits of 3675 foot Cheney Cobble and 3839 foot Rist Mountain.  Both mountains, located east of Tahawus, are trail less and difficult to reach due to location.  We are unsure of any views from either mountain. One trail that you'll get many great views is the trail to Moxham Mountain. Built in 2012, the 2.7 mile trail features many overlooks as it winds its way to the summit of Moxham Mountain.

You'll find two lean to's in the wild forest, with one at Stony Pond and one at Cheney Pond.  The one at Cheney Pond are only accessible via boat.  You'll also find roadside campsites along Boreas Road, North Woods Club Road, NY 28N and one along Moose Club Road. A future section of the North Country National Scenic Trail will travel through the wild forest. Look below for maps and a list of the popular destinations in this wild forest (many maps were courtesy of Andy Arthur from

Hiking Destinations in Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest

Moxham Mountain Vanderwhacker Mountain Stony Pond
Hewitt Eddy Boreas River Rankin Pond
Balfour Lake Hewitt Pond Barnes Pond
Sherman Ponds Center Pond Lindsey Marsh
Dutton Mountain Hotwater Pond Nate Pond
Grassy Pond Wolf Pond Cheney Pond
Lester Flow Vanderwhacker Pond Merrills Hill
Camp Santanoni Goodnow Mountain Ragged Mounatin

Hewitt Eddy Trail along NY 28N

From the deck at Camp Santanoni on Newcomb Lake



Hiking in Adirondack Park

Vanderwhacker Mountain Central Adirondacks

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