Champlain Area Trails (CATS)

Champlain Area Trails (CATS) - Pure Adirondacks

Cover Image by Brendan Wiltse Photography.

Much of the literature and attention on hiking in the Adirondacks focuses on the 46 High Peaks and surrounding day hikes near Lake Placid and Keene Valley, but there are many trails in the farther reaches of the Adirondacks that are well worth the visit and which provide an escape from the crowds and a venture into something new. As a business and local resource that cares deeply about supporting the integrity and longevity of the Adirondacks, we believe it is important to highlight many of the Park’s gems in addition to the trails that receive heavier traffic.

Champlain Area Trails (CATS) is a non-profit, accredited land trust whose mission is to make trails, save land, connect people with nature, and promote economic vitality in New York’s Champlain Valley. The organization manages, maintains and publicizes a great network of welcoming trails that holds much magic of its own – rolling, accessible, and generally quiet trails in the most biodiverse region of the Adirondack Park. If you’re not dead-set on peak bagging, or need a little break from it, the CATS trails provide a wonderful alternative to the quintessential High Peaks.


Family at Wildway Overlook Trail by Jen Zahorchak

CATS trails provide different vistas than other areas of the Adirondacks, namely in that many of the trails feature views of Lake Champlain to the east and of the High Peaks to the west. You would rarely see that in the rest of the Adirondacks. As is shared on their website, one long-term goal of CATS is for the trails to one day connect in Quebec and Vermont, creating a network of trails around Lake Champlain and branch outward from the lake. Another unique aspect of the CATS trails is their emphasis on community – the trails are seen as one way to connect neighboring communities and bring people together both through recreating on the trails, through volunteering doing trailwork, patronizing local shops and business and supporting CATS’ mission as well.

Coot Hill Sunrise by Brendan Wiltse

There are many trails in the CATS network, and they exist across a sweeping section of the Easternmost Adirondacks, a.k.a. the “Adirondack Coast.”. It might be helpful to think of the trails as separate trail systems that are a subset of a larger trail network, since they are not localized and there is no central trailhead. You may want to drive, or ride bikes, from one cluster of trails to another and for that reason, as well as for more detailed descriptions of the individual trails, we recommend checking out CATS’ website for the most comprehensive information of the trail system. CATS also produces and Northern and Central Champlain Valley Trail map and they encourage people to contact them to obtain copies ( CATS currently has 57 different trails (including short connector trails) that traverse nearly 60 miles total. The trails are great for hiking, snowshoeing and cross country skiing. And they’ve become quite popular for bird watching and wildlife viewing as well.

Central Champlain Valley Trail Map

Northern Champlain Valley Trail Map


List of Trails:

Ancient Oak Trail  

Art Farm Trail

Bald Peak Trail (external link)

Bartlett Pond – McConley Rd Trail 

Beaver Bend Trail 

Beaver Flow Trail 

Belfry Mt Trail 

Black Kettle Trail

Blueberry Hill Trails (external link)

Bobcat Trail 

Boquet Mountain Trail  

Boquet River Nature Preserve Trail 

Brookfield Headwaters Trail  

Challis Pond Trail  

Champlain Bridge Trail  

Cheney Mt Trail 

Coon Mountain Trails (external link)

Coot Hill Trail/Big Hollow Trail  

Crown Point State Historic Site  

Crowfoot Pond Trail 

DaCy Meadow Farm Trail Trail (external link)

Field & Forest Trail 

Florence Hathaway Park Nature Trail 

Flying Squirrel Trail    

Footbridge Park Trail 

Foothill Trail 

Hammond & Bloody Pond Trail  

Hemlock Hill Trail 

Hidden Quarry Trail 

High Point Trail 

Homestead Trail 

LaChute River Walk 

Lee Park Trail 

Long Valley Trail 

McAuliffe Road Trail

McConley Spring Trail 

Moose Mt Pond Trail 

Mountain Spring Rd Trail 

Mount Gilligan Trail 

Noblewood Park Trail  

Old Ironville Rd Trail 

Over the Mountain to Lake Champlain Trail  

Pauline Murdoch Wildlife Trail

Penfield Pond Trail 

Poke-O-Moonshine Ranger Trail

Poke-O-Moonshine Observers’ Trail 

Rattlesnake Mt Trail 

Riverside Trail

Rocky Ledges Trail 

Round Pond Trail 

Sophie’s Lair Trail 

Split Rock Wild Forest Trails  

Thrall Dam Park Trail 

Three Creeks Trail 

Viall’s Crossing Trail

Webb Royce Swamp Overlook Trail 

Wadhams Lookout Trail 

Wildway Overlook Trail 

Wildway Passage Loop Trail 

Woods & Swale Trail  

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
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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