Monday, July 13, 2009

Mount Colden (4714')

Mount Colden via LOJ parking lot.

Departing from the LOJ the best access route is to hike to Marcy dam approximately 2 miles away.

After hiking another mile past Marcy dam we reached a Y in the trail where you can hike up the ridge past Arnold Lake or stay on the low lying area and access the summit by Avalanche Lake.

From the Y we hiked another 3 miles of rolling passes and some slab rock and boulders. This took us up to the NE summit of Colden with some great views of the surrounding area and great perspective of the main summit.

Once at the peak there are clear 360 degree views including the lakes below as well as many peaks including Algonquin, Marshall, Marcy…and several others.

Coming down the South east side of the mountain brought us down to the flat paths that follow the lake and many runoff creeks. Caution should be made on this decent as it is approximately 2500 to 3000 foot elevation loss over about 1.5 miles. This results in hiking down sheer rock surfaces that resemble the trap dyke just a few miles to the east.

Once completed the hiking out is 5.8 miles of rather impressive with the massive avalanche wall, bridges and ladders over the lake as well as the impressive collection of fallen and slide trees at the base of the trap dyke.

Total miles is 13 hiking time without breaks was 7hours and 5 minutes


Start: LOJ to Marcy Dam
Total Height: 4714’
Elevation Gain: 2850'
Total Distance: 14 miles or 22.4km
Total Hiking Time: 7 hrs

Hiked to Marcy Dam from the Adirondack LOJ.

View of Mt. Marcy from Marcy Dam.

Before the hike enjoyed a cup of coffee with cinnamon raisin breakfast pita (also have muesli ones that are delicious) with PB and banana. Packed full of energy to start off the hike.

Stopped for a nectarine and almonds snack en route.

View of the peak of Mt. Colden from the trail.
Great view from the peak.
Can see AvalancheLake below, along with a view of both the MacIntrye and Great Ranges,
as Mt. Colden sits between the two.
Sitting by Avalanche Lake for lunch - hummus, tortillas, kelbasa, cheese & apples.

Took the trail around Avalanche Lake on the way down. Very scenic, with lots of ladders, bridges (hitched up matildas) and hand over hand scambling to get around the lake.

This hike was fueled by Sausage Penne Meal the evening before.


  1. I love hiking but does not do it as often as I would like. My sister is crazy about it. She did organized lot's of trips. The last two years she had rented a RV and did lot's of trails in BC. You would love it here. The only problem are the bears and the grizzlys.

  2. I think that is my only issue with the west and hiking...the BIG MASSIVE BEARS you guys have. Black bears are fun to see and won't hunt you down for food...a grizzly on the other hand...