Fulton County High Point Trip Report

Pigeon Mtn

Date: October 26, 2000
Author: David Galvin

I wanted to see if this high point was indeed a tough climb, and if Gary Fallesen's description was accurate. Of course, I also wanted to check it off on my list.

The area is accessed from Pinnacle Road, which can be reached from Caroga Lake or Gloversville via Fulton County Route 112, or from Upper Benson via F.C. Route 125. The road signs in the Adirondacks are well maintained, unlike the Catskills, but the turnoff is also marked by a large yellow sign for the Adirondack Beagle Hare Club, which will be passed on the way to the end of the road.

The northern terminus of Pinnacle Road marks the start of the Chase Lake Trail, which heads off to the right (east). Two other (unmarked) trails start at the same point. Take the one furthest to your left (NNW). There is a NYSDEC sign banning motor vehicles beside this trail. It is also blocked by some large boulders placed to assist those drivers who can't, or won't, read. The trail climbs steeply for about a quarter mile before meeting the eastern bank of Pinnacle Creek, which it follows for about two miles. On the way it passes two marshes on the left, the first with signs of beaver activity, and what appears to be an abandoned house site to the right of the trail. The trail itself is wide enough for a car, and generally climbs gently. It is quite wet in spots, however. At about two and a quarter miles it forks as it approaches the Pigeon-Panther col. The left fork, marked by some log corduroy and a creek running down its middle, is the correct route. This climbs the shoulder of Pigeon Mountain for about a quarter mile before disappearing into the woods. From there, go roughly WNW to the top. There are partial views of Pinnacle and Panther Mountains, just to the east, on the way up. The summit itself has no views, just some small boulders and an outcropping of bedrock under the trees.

It took me about one and a half hours to reach the summit from the road, and another one and a half hours to return. The elevation gain was about 1100'. The actual bushwhack is only about a half mile and 700' elevation gain. The mixed forest is somewhat cluttered with hobblebush and small trees, but hardly as challenging as some of the spruce I've crawled through in the ADK High Peaks or even the Catskills. Pigeon Mountain is not one of the tougher climbs in the east, in my opinion.