Mount Arab has so much to offer that you’ll find yourself returning to this mountain again and again. From history to scenic hiking, this place has it all.
Once part of a larger network of active fire tower observation stations, Mount Arab is currently one of only two towers in Saint Lawrence County. The towers are no longer used for forest fire detection but remain as out of doors museums and places of recreation.
The observation station was established on Mount Arab in 1912 and the steel fire tower was built in 1918. This hike is part of the Fire Tower Challenge and the Tupper Lake Triad.
Mount Arab is part of the Fire Tower Challenge and the Tupper Lake Hiking Triad.
How to get there
From the intersection of Route 3 and Route 30 in the village of Tupper Lake, follow Route 3 toward Piercefield. In about 7.25 miles, turn left on Conifer Road and follow it for almost 2 miles to Mount Arab Road, on the left. Follow that road for about 1 mile. The trailhead is on the left; parking is on the right. There is a large parking lot with room for plenty of cars.
By the numbers
- Distance: 1.0 miles
- Elevation gain: 750 feet
- Mountain elevation: 2,525 feet
It’s important to note that some of the lands surrounding this trail are conservation easements. Please respect private property.
The well-marked path is moderately steep and steady for the bulk of the hike but there are short, steep sections. The trail follows the northern ridge of the mountain and keeps the steeper slopes off to the hiker's right.
From the parking lot, the trail begins climbing immediately. You’ll notice numbers on trees along the way. This corresponds with an interpretive hiking guide.
Around the halfway mark, there is a large boulder at the top of a steeper section. The trail swings left and continues to climb until 0.8 miles. Here, hikers will see a small cliff that they will soon be on top of. From there the trail moderates nicely before topping out on the open summit. You will approach the summit from behind the old fire tower observer’s cabin, which is now a museum run by the Friends of Mount Arab. The tower will stand directly in front of you. To the right, there is a small side trail with views overlooking the private Mount Arab and Eagle Crag lakes. (However, these lakes are on private property with no public access.) For 360-degree views, climb to the top of the 35-foot fire tower, which was restored by the DEC and Friends of Mount Arab.
Mount Arab in winter
Mount Arab is a fantastic place to snowshoe. The short trail is perfect for beginners. Cross-country skiing is not recommended but can be done. Remember to use caution climbing the tower stairs in winter and to remove spikes/ snowshoes.
The parking area will be plowed and accessible.
Read our blog on hiking Mount Arab to get a first hand perspective!