Buck Mountain stands tall on the Eastern side of Lake George just below the narrows of the lake. There is a rocky summit with sweeping views from the west to the north.
The summit is directly across the lake from the village of Bolton Landing and interesting views of the Sagamore Resort and Dome Island may be enjoyed looking East. Moving to the a smaller rocky area just north of the true summit exposes views of the Tongue Mountain Range, Shelvin Rock Mt, Sleeping Beauty and Black Mt. in the distance.
Views of the southern portion of Lake George including, the village itself, can be seen on the approach near the summit on the trail from Pilot Knob.
There are two main trails to the summit, one from both the North and South sides of the mountain, each is described in more detail under the Routes section of this page. Both pass through forests of basswood, birch, white pine, oak, maple, and sumac.
This is a popular summit and easily accessable without a long drive. Many hikers may be present on weekends throughout the summer months.
WARNING: Rattlesnakes inhabit the rock crevices on many of Lake George's mountains. Take extra care when reaching or climbing around rocks and crevices and the use of high boots is recommended.
Pilot Knob Trailhead: Take NY Rt. 149 to Rt. 9L. Turn left on to Rt. 9L heading north. Take Rt. 9L for just shy of 5 miles and turn right at the sign for Kattskill Bay and Pilot Knob. The parking lot is 3.5 miles on the right hand side. There is a trail register at the trailhead.
Hogstown Trailhead: Turn on to Buttermilk Falls Rd. from Rt. 149. At 3.2 miles down this road the becomes Sly Pond Road and it turns to a dirt road. At the intersection with Hogstown Rd. continue straight ahread on Shelving Rock Road. The parking area is just past the parking area for the Lake George Trails System on the left hand side. There is a trailhead sign for Buck Mountain at this parking area.
There are no parking or fees at either trailhead at this time.
There is ample parking at the Pilot Knob trailhead, but a much smaller parking area for the Hogstown trailhead.
When To Climb
Summer, fall and winter are the best times to ascend Buck. Mtn.
Summer offers great views of bustling Lake George but often leads to crowds on the summit.
Hiking the in fall provides an opportunity to enjoy the spectaular fall colors, while winter offers a moderately challenging snowshoe climb.
Either trail in spring will be muddy and can result in damage to the trail if used heavily during the spring thaw, however Buck Mt. is much further south than its larger brothers in the high peaks, and does offer earlier hiking as a result.