#9 Basin Mountain

#9 Basin Mountain - Pure Adirondacks

As you have to pass over Saddleback to reach Basin, this mountain is usually climbed in conjunction with Saddleback and also often Haystack as well, depending on how adventurous the group of climbers is. If you include all three peaks it is a long day, but well worth it for the expansive and unique views you get from each of the peaks.

Trail Stats

Distance: 15.2 miles round-trip from the Garden (if hiking only as far as Basin)

Elevation: 4,827 ft

Ascent: 2,870 ft from Johns Brook 

Your hike will begin from the Garden, hiking 3.1 rolling miles towards Johns Brook Lodge – at 3 miles you will pass a campsite, taking a left at a junction shortly following the campsite. This left will lead you to the DEC Interior Outpost, at which point you will pick up the Orebed Brook trail. Follow this trail another 3.1 miles to Gothics Col, at which point you will reach the intersection with the Range Trail. Take a right on the range trail to continue up the side of Saddleback, with great views of the slides on Gothics. The trail levels out briefly on the east summit of Saddleback, then dropping down into the “saddle” between the mountain’s two peaks before ascending again another half mile to Saddleback’s actual summit.

After enjoying the view from Saddleback, you can continue on to Basin by following the trail sharply to the right along a ledge. Turn left at the end of the ledge, carefully watching your footing as the trail descends steeply over ledges to a col after 0.3 miles. Here the trail begins ascending again, growing increasingly steep over the next quarter mile. The trail follows along for another quarter mile, crossing another ledge before reaching the summit of Basin.


If you’re driving into Keene Valley from Lake Placid, there is a DEC sign after the post office on the right, at Adirondack Street. Take this right; the road will turn into Johns Brook Lane and you follow it 1.5 miles until you reach the Garden Parking Lot. If the parking lot is full, you will have to park in Keene Valley and walk the 1.5 miles along the road or park before Keene Valley at Marcy Field (coming from Keene it will be on the right, shortly before you pass the Mountaineer) and take a shuttle from there to the Garden. You should do your research before coming because the shuttle schedule changes seasonally and as of 2016 only runs on weekends.

High Peaks Map

Plan & prepare for your ADK adventure! ADK Mountain Club's topographic trail map, High Peaks: Adirondack Trail Map, revised edition as of Summer 2021. The go-to map for the latest on High Peaks trails, lean-tos, campsites, and public-private land boundaries, many of which have changed in the last year alone.

46 Adirondack High Peaks

Roster of Peaks

Keep it PURE

Remember to Leave No Trace! Buy a physical map, read it, plan, and prepare. Think about the NYS Rangers and medical personnel that exhaust themselves for a rescue that could have been avoided. Pack out your trash. Use a bear canister when primitive camping and cook away from where you’re sleeping. Do the rock walk to help reduce the impact on fragile alpine vegetation. Camp at designated campsites and never camp on or near summits.

Trail Conditions

Know before you go

The 46 of 46 Podcast

An outdoors documentary podcast of a local hiker's journey hiking all 46 High Peaks of the Adirondack Mountains to become an Adirondack 46er. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and more.

Take The Pledge!


Each year, millions of people visit the public lands inside the Adirondacks. However you choose to spend your time here, we know the Adirondacks will hold a special place in your heart. We feel the same way. To Love Your Adirondacks is to protect the lands, waters, and communities we all know and love.

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