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Lake George, New York, United States

Prospect Mountain - Lake George

An easy up and down hike to a peak overlooking Lake George and the village below with a really fun optional descent down

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 (6 votes, 6 reviews)
Difficulty: Easy
Length: 2.9 miles / 4.7 km
Duration: 1-3 hours
Family Friendly • Dog Friendly
Overview: This is a short 3 mile hike up and back to the top of Prospect Mountain above Lake George Village. From the top you'll see the remains of an old hotel and the old funicular railway that used to bring hotel guests up the mountain. You'll also have spectacular views south over the Glens Falls area and North up the southern end of Lake George. If it is a super clear day you may even be able to see the High Peaks to the far north. Also, read tips below for a really fun optional descent...

Tips: Trailhead Directions:
From Lake George Village turn west onto Montcalm street and head away from teh lake towards Smith Street. Turn left on Smith Street and head a half block to the trailhead sign. No fees to park here.

Local Tip (I grew up here):
They don't open the Prospect Mountain Scenic Highway to the top until tourist season starts. This is usually in May sometime. If you are a long boarder try hiking your board up to the top with you for an epic descent on your long board without the worry of cars coming at you. I've done this a half dozen times (one time at night with a headlamp dodging porcupines on the way done the road). At the bottom of the road you'll be a couple miles south of the trailhead you will have to find your way back to.

Points of Interest


Prospect Mountain Trailhead

Free to park here. Follow the trail over the Northway and then follow the red trailmarkers to the top. You'll cross the Prospect Mountain Highway on the way up.

Prospect Mountain Summit

At 2,030 feet you are at the summit of Prospect Mountain. Now you have the choice of whether you want to hike back down the way you came, maybe hitch a ride on a tour bus down... or... jump onto your longboard for an epic descent.
Pictures in this guide taken by: JonathanEllinger, melmuroff, kevinp2

Jonathan Ellinger
Wouldn't consider this an easy hike - more of a moderate as there are some steep areas. Only a couple of hours round trip and it can get busy towards the summit as there is a picnic area that also can be driven to. Very nice views at the summit with quite a bit of room.
Visited on Jul 06, 2015

by jimcallister on Jul 19, 2015
Definitely not an easy hike due to the near-continuous steepness. However, it is worth it for the view from the summit. Make sure you bring plenty of water with you.
Visited on Aug 18, 2013

by Bhenry1985 on Aug 20, 2013
Really enjoyed the hike yet it is a lot more challenging than described. I am a 22 year old girl in relatively good shape and would consider this as a difficult climb for inexperienced hikers. The hill is straight up for 1.9 miles and is pretty steep compared to some other climbs. It took us about 70 minutes to get to the top and another 45 to climb back down. Bring a snack and water! There is a picnic area at the top (and a parking lot if you prefer to drive.)
Visited on Aug 18, 2013

by rcmallinger on Aug 18, 2013
I am a novice but this was not easy as rated. Also, states that it is pet friendly and the sign at the beginning of the trail Clearly states "no dogs". What a great trail though. I thought it was fun and challenging for a 50 year old male not in the best shape at 235lbs. I carried a small pack with water and bars and was rewarded at the top with great views all around.
Visited on Aug 05, 2013

by patm895 on Aug 08, 2013
Very tough hike. It goes straight up the mt and doesn't level out at all.
Visited on May 05, 2013

by catzjdb979 on May 06, 2013
I think the difficulty rating on this hike is a mistake unless you are a avid hiker. Being a novice hiker this was not a 'easy' hike. It's very rocky and quite steep in areas. However once you get to the top it's worth it! The view is amazing! I will do this again but will work my way up to it with 'easier' hikes.
Visited on May 13, 2012

by forest98520janice on May 14, 2012

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About the Author

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Although I have climbed over 250 mountains from various places around the U.S. and have hiked in Europe...

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