Big Pine Trail

Hiking

From the trailhead you will be on a very flat trail which is perfect for the entire family. There are only a couple very small changes in elevation and those are quite gradual. A short downhill will bring you to a small brook crossing which will be of no issue. Past here the trail climbs a bit through some impressively tall pines.

The Big Pine will be at the base of a very short spur trail on your right. It is over 140’ tall, and over 14’ in circumference. A professional guess is that this pine is around 270 years old.

The trail continues at the spur and eventually brings you to a small floating bog on your left. A faint herd path will bring you to the shore but be very respectful of the fragile environment. The floating bogs of the Adirondacks are very unstable.  This is a neat place to visit if you want the extra distance; it lies only about a tenth mile away. 

Trailhead

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 2-miles to the unmarked trailhead on the right. The trailhead is a bit tough to locate, but used frequently.

South Shore Road is a dead end just past the trailhead, which is unmarked. A small pull-off on the right for 1-2 cars gives it away.

Distance Round Trip

2.5 Miles

Elevation Gain or Loss

~100’

Time Round Trip

Family with Young Kids:     1.5 to 2 hours

Experienced Hiker:         1 to 2 hours

Out of Shape Hiker:     1.5 to 2 hours

Snowshoeing & Cross Country Skiing

From the trailhead you will be on a very flat snowshoe course which is perfect for the entire family. There are only a couple very small changes in elevation. A short downhill will bring you to a small brook crossing which will be of no issue. Past here the trail climbs a bit through some impressively tall pines. The Big Pine will be at the base of a very short spur trail on your right.

The trail continues at the spur and eventually brings you to a small floating bog on your left, which is a neat place to visit if you want the extra distance, it lies only about a tenth mile away.

Approximate Time Round Trip

Families with Kids:            2 to 2.5 hours

Experienced Snowshoers:            1.5 to 2 hours

Out of Shape Snowshoers:            2 to 2.5 hours

Difficulty: 1=easiest, 5=hardest

One: This is a flat trail with very little elevation change.

Additional Important Information:

The trailhead is a bit tough to locate, but used frequently. This frequent use can help you find the trailhead by locating tracks in the snow. South Shore Road is a dead end just past the trailhead, which is unmarked. A small pull-off on the right for about 1-car gives it away.

Skiing over a frozen body of water is a cross-country skiing past time; it can access you to areas not seen by most in the summer. With that being said it is a dangerous activity to cross frozen water bodies and should be done with care and respect for your environment. Know the ice conditions and be prepared for anything including heavy winds, snow drifts, whiteouts, slushy conditions, and thin ice. 

Birding

The boglands environment is a major draw for birdwatchers. Lowland boreal communities are sources of insect life during the summer, attracting migratory birds who want to nest there and raise their young. The Palm Warbler nests in sphagnum moss and the Lincoln's Sparrow in bog shrubs. The Yellow-bellied Flycatcher also prefers to breed in peat lands.

Look for other bog habitat favorites like Yellow-rumped and Nashville Warblers, Canada Jay, Alder Flycatchers, Northern Waterthrush, Cedar Waxwings and Black-backed Woodpeckers.

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