Algonquin Peak

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New York, United States, North America
5114 ft / 1559 m
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Algonquin Peak
Created On: Jun 4, 2001
Last Edited On: Feb 7, 2005


Algonquin it the second highest peak in the Adirondacks and also the only other 5000er. It is the higest peak in the MacIntyre Range and totaly dominates its lower siblings . It sits across from Mt. Colden and gives one a great view of the slides on this peak. Marcy is a little further away as well on a clear day one can see Giant some 35km beyond that.

It is a popular weekend hike. More difficult than Mt. Marcy (at least I think so) due to the very direct trail that follows a mountain stream. This can be very slippery and icy depending on the time of year.

Getting There

Make your way from the lake Placid Area and head for the Adirondack Loj. You can start form the parking lot and follow one of several trails. 6-9 hours round trip. Travel time from Montreal, Canada. 2.5 hours

Red Tape

There is no user fee as such but there is a charge for the use of the parking lot. If you stay at the Lodge there is a charge as well as for the lean-tos around Heart Lake.

Groups of 10 or more will require a permit.

As of June 30th, 2001 all parties regardless of size in the Eastern Zone (High Peaks) of the Park must fill in and possess a self-issuing "trip ticket," which may be obtained at the trailhead. People have been fined and turned around for not having one and at the more popular trailheads the Ranger on duty will not let you pass without one. This can cause some delays in getting onto the trail.

When To Climb

The most popular seasons are Summer and Fall. But Winter and Spring while more difficult due to the snow and ice are possible.
Snow shoes, crampons and good winter gear needed for a winter ascent.

Normally the trail from Adirondak Loj is very early to ice over and can be very very tricky without instep crampons as soon at the snow hit the mountians. The trail leading down the other side of the mountian is usually less iced over and with some recent impovements in the trail is passable without crampons most of the year. However, this side gets a great deal more snow so snowshoes are a must.


Yes camping is allowed in many areas. There are may lean-tos around Heart and Colden Lake that are very special. The popular ones tend to fill up quickly during the Summer and Early Fall. So book with The Adirondack State Park early to avoid disapointment.

Bears so hang your food.

The General rules for the Adirondacks

1) No Camping above 4,000 feet
2) No camping withing 150 feet of a stream or other water source except at a designated campsite.
3) No soap or washing withing 150 feet of water
4) Pack it in Pack it out is the rule for garbage
5) Only dead and down wood can be used for fires and set in a proper fire pit. ( local etiquette is to use a stove and not a fire)

Mountain Conditions

As with any other peak in this region it is always wise to be prepared for anything and everything. Certainly rain gear and a tent are two essential items.


is one site for information while it is on Mt. Marcy the weather should be the same

Whats In a Name

Traditional lore has it that this peak was the southern extent of the Algonquin nation with Boundary Peak marking its border with the Iroquois nation. Total hogwash of course since the Algonquin are much further north and the whole Adirondack area was and still is part of the traditional lands of the people of Akasene "the Abenaki". Though the area was not settled very intensively by them since there was little hunting and fishing and much better areas around for them to live in.

Check out the entry for Couchsachrage for the Aboriginal view of the place.

Basically it is one of those nice 19th century names that has no basis in fact but has stuck, none the less.

The one fact that is quite neat about the MacIntyre range is that all the USGS has gotten the name wrong. The actual name of the person the range was named after was McIntyre . The name has stuck however, and all guidebooks and mapsI have seen of use the approved USGS name MacIntyre.

External Links

Additions and CorrectionsPost an Addition or Correction

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skiing311 - Sep 5, 2002 4:25 pm - Hasn't voted

Untitled Comment

I found that Marcy was harder than Algonquin, even after climbing Wright. However, they are two completely different climbs. Marcy is LONG, but relatively flat until you reach the summit dome. Algonquin is shorter, but steeper until you climb above treeline where the walking becomes realtively easy compared to above treeline on Marcy.


nartreb - Jun 29, 2005 3:55 pm - Hasn't voted

Untitled Comment

Geography of native tribes depends who you ask and what time period you're talking about.

In this case there's also a problem of definition, since "algonquin" might refer either to a specific tribe or to a very large linguistic group.

"During a 50-year war beginning sometime around 1570, the eastern Iroquois drove the Algonquin from the Adirondack Mountains and the upper St. Lawrence River"


Actually the fighting was nearly continuous, despite a couple of Dutch-brokered truces in the 1610s. From the 1620s to the 1690s it was called the "Beaver Wars", with the Mohawk Iroquois generally winning against the Mohican, Algonkin, Abenaki, Huron, and many others on many fronts, with French, English, Dutch, and even Swedish forces involved from time to time.

The Algonkin proper formed several alliances against the Iroquois, and several campaigns were waged not too far from here.

So while Algonkin territory may not have extended this far at any given time, the idea that at some point in the 17th century these peaks marked the border of the Algonkin sphere of influence isn't too far-fetched.

The enemies of the Iroquois in this region (notably the Abenaki and Mahicans) spoke languages in the Algonquian family, and the Iroquois didn't always distinguish clearly among them, calling them all "Adirondack" ("tree-eaters"), so the Dutch or English settlers who named the peaks could easily have been confused. [The Algonquians returned the favor: "Iroquois" comes from an Algonquian word meaning "rattlesnake"]

alqonkin history

[note: many broken links on that page due to a change in domain name, easy to fix manually if the redirects are too slow]

summary of Mohawk [iroquois] history

detailed iroquois history


hikeandskiman - Nov 15, 2012 8:22 am - Hasn't voted

Overview with typos corrected

Algonquin is the second highest peak in the Adirondacks and the only other 5000 footer. It is the highest peak in the MacIntyre Range and totally dominates its lower siblings. It sits across from Mt. Colden and gives one a great view of the slides on this peak. Marcy is further away. On a clear day one can see Giant some 35km beyond that.

It is a popular weekend hike. It can be very slippery and icy depending on the time of year due to the very direct trail that follows a mountain stream. In such conditions, it can very well be more difficult than Mt. Marcy.


hikeandskiman - Nov 15, 2012 9:11 am - Hasn't voted

Getting There clarified

From the west: from the intersection of Routes 86 and 73 in Lake Placid, go east 3.3 miles on Route 73 until Adirondack Loj Road. From the east: from the intersection of Routes 9N and 73 in Keene, go west 10.9 miles on Route 73 until Adirondack Loj Road.

Go south on Adirondack Loj Road for 4.7 miles until the High Peaks Information Center parking lot near Adirondack Loj. Travel time from Montreal, Canada is 2.5-3.0 hours, including the border stop.

The shortest direct route is via the blue-blazed Van Hoevenberg Trail 0.9 miles (1.4 km) to its junction with the yellow-blazed MacIntyre Range Trail. The latter is then followed for the remaining 3.1 miles (5 km) to the summit, during which the route gets progressively steeper and rockier, going over many steep rock chutes called "slides". Round trip is 6-9 hours.

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Algonquin Peak

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