Hands down one of my favorite hikes in the Adirondacks, Hopkins Mountain offers incredible views of the surrounding high peaks with a wide-open summit (High Peak caliber views from a spectacular non-High Peak summit). Sitting right to the side of Giant, the Hopkins summit, at an elevation of 3156’, faces the great range where Sawteeth Mt. steals the show with its dramatic jagged edges.
To begin this hike, park at the Rooster Comb parking lot on Rte. 73. From here, you walk across Route 73 and walk east (a right from the parking lot) toward Ranney Road. The first part of this trail continues to the end of this private road where the actual foot-trail starts. At the end of Ranney Road, you will see a sign for Hopkins/Giant and blue trail markers.
The trail now follows and crisscrosses the Hopkins Brook from here. Passing through pine forest, the trail is soft and continues at a consistent gradual climb with a few steep pushes along the way. After about 1.8 miles of hiking, the pines will turn back into hardwood and you will come to an intersection with the Mossy Creek Trail. From here the trails join for the next 0.7 miles until the final intersection of Hopkins and Giant. At this intersection, you are only 0.2 steep miles from the summit.
After the final push, you emerge onto the summit ledge with sweeping views of the surrounding peaks. It will not be uncommon to have the summit to yourself (though the peak is growing in popularity), however, there is no shortage of space to spread out either on the summit or the open ledges that lead you there.
After taking in the views, you will return to the car the same way you came in closing out the hike at 5.4 miles round trip with a vertical gain of about 2,200 feet.
Thanks to our PureADK Hiking Ambassador, Bryce LaDuc, for writing about this great hike. You can follow Bryce and more of her adventures around the Adirondacks via her Instagram profile.