The Gothics at 4,736 feet is the tenth highest peak on the Adirondack 46 High Peak list. This hike offers one of the most challenging “climbs” featuring fixed cables as well as ladders at strategic points on the mountain. The bald summit offers incredible 360 degree views of the Adirondack region.
Elevation – 4,736 feet (1443.53 m)
Elevation Gain – 3,500 feet (1066.8 m)
Difficulty – Strenuous
Distance – 6.2 miles one-way (9.98 km)
Duration (book time) – 8 to 10 hours
Gothics Trail (Primary Trailhead)
The primary route for Gothics Mountain requires a 6.2 mile, (one-way) hike featuring moderate to steep ascents and declines. Begin your hike at the St. Huberts parking lot where you will follow along a compact dirt road until reaching pavement. Once you are half a mile from the main parking lot, make a left turn. you will need to turn left and walk in between two tennis courts on Lake Road Way to get to the trailhead. This is is a private property area and no dogs are allowed in the area. Hike for roughly two miles along the dirt access road, until you reach the Gothics Trail. The grades begin gentle and you will cross over a the Ausable River via a bridge. Continue hiking until you reach the bottom of Beaver Meadow Falls. At the base of Beaver Meadow Falls, the trail will begin to ascend steeply. To the left of the falls, you will climb up a ladder to reach the steeper section. There are multiple series of ladders that ascend a slide where the terrain is extremely steep and rugged. Continue scaling the left side of the trail until you reach the summit of Gothics Mountain with 360 degree views. To descend, simply retrace your steps the way you came until reaching the trailhead parking area where you began. (3,500 feet of elevation gain, 12.4 miles roundtrip, 8 to 10 hours book time)
Gothics via Cable Route
Beginning at The Garden in Keene Valley, this route is a 7.1-mile hike (one way) with varying terrain throughout the hike. After leaving the parking area, keep along the relatively flat path. After you reach a junction with Southside trail, continue straight. You will then see Johns Brook Lodge to your right. Stay to the left of the DEC Interior Outpost, crossing over a bridge and then turn right immediately. Keep hiking until you reach a five-way intersection and continue straight on the Ore Bed Trail. After another mile of hiking, the trail begins to steepen. Once you reach the top of Ore Bed Trail, stay left up the Cable Route. This route is extremely steep and you will be entirely exposed to the elements. There is a coated cable to help with ascent if needed. Continue until you reach the west summit of Gothics. For the true summit, you will need to go a bit further. To descend, simply retrace your steps the way you came until reaching the trailhead parking area where you began. (3,050 feet of elevation gain, 14.2 miles round-trip, 9 hours book time)
Gothics via Pyramid Peak
A 13.1 miles roundtrip hike via Pyramid Peak. Hiking Gothics from the AMR makes it possible to pair the route with Pyramid Peak. Pyramid Peak has some of the best views in the Adirondacks, but it makes the route slightly longer in length. (feet of elevation gain, 13.1 miles round-trip, 8 to 10 hours book time)
The primary route begins at the St. Huberts parking lot.
Take Route 73 from Lake Placid until you reach St. Huberts. Parking is located directly across from the Roaring Brook Falls Trailhead. You will need to enter the private Adirondack Mountain Reserve to reach the trailhead parking area, which may require a small fee to park.
Hiking In Winter
During the winter, Gothics is quite often climbed with Armstrong using the trail from AMR and Beaver Meadow Falls. Be sure to give yourself an extra 2 to 3 hours of hiking time when attempting in winter conditions. Hazards to make note of are deep snowdrifts along the ridge and upon the summit, where whiteout conditions can exist. Check the weather and bring essential gear including snowshoes, foot traction, cold weather gear, goggles, etc.
Here is a detailed weather forecast for the next four days:
Lake Placid, NY
Andrea is a writer, hiker, and adventurer from New England. She enjoys snowboarding, sunrise hikes, winter, night hiking, traveling, and photography.