High Falls Loop
This loop is described in a counterclockwise direction of travel; this by no means is the best course of attack, either direction is fine. From the trailhead you will be on a very flat kick and glide terrain along an old railroad grade (no ties) with Skate Creek on your left. This area can have wet sections due to beaver activity.
The flat trail continues and eventually you will come to an area where you can see the Oswegatchie River off in the distance through the trees. High Rock comes soon after with an outstanding overlook above the river. High Rock has some decent spots to tent camp if you so desire.
The trail continues keeping the river to your right and not ever too far away. At about 4.5 miles from High Rock you will come to the Five Ponds Trail and Bridge to your right, pass this by and continue to the left. Staying flat and after a couple more creek crossings you will come to the side trail to High Falls. High Falls is 0.4 miles away. This is about the half-way point and an excellent spot to spend the night.
The following day you will start back out to Wanakena by heading right at the previous intersection. From here you will have a slight climb and then gentle trail along the base of Threemile Mountain. Just under 4-miles from camp you will come to a side trail up Cat Mountain, which is highly worth the effort to visit.
Continue on a flat course with a couple light sections of downhill and pass by the side trail to Janacks Landing. This is also an excellent place to camp if you wanted to make it a two night outing. From here the trail stays very flat with only a slight change in elevation, along another old railroad grade. You will come out about 0.5 miles from your car, a bit further up South Shore Road.
From the intersection of Route 3 and Route 30 in the Village of Tupper Lake follow Route 3 toward Cranberry Lake. Follow Route 3 for 33.4 miles to CR61 (Wanakena Road) on the left. Follow here and stay straight on the main road to South Shore Road. Follow South Shore Road for around 0.25 miles to the trailhead parking on the right. You will have to walk back up the road for a couple hundred feet to the road on the left and walk this to its end, which is about 0.1 miles.
Distance Round Trip:
Elevation Gain or Loss:
Time Round Trip:
Family with Young Kids: Not recommended
Experienced Hiker: This is a 2 to 3 day backpacking loop
Out of Shape Hiker: Not Recommended