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Catskills High Peaks: Ashokan High Point Overnight Backpacking

Ashokan High Point: 8 mile hike

Time: 5 hours (Sat. afternoon and Sunday morning)

Vertical rise: 1,980 feet

The trail to Ashokan High Point's summit is an old settlement road. Old stone walls and ditch construction protect it from the advancing forest. Only the overhanging boughs that occasionally you will duck under betray any need for trail or trail maintenance. The trail to Ashokan High Point shows up on the NY-NJTC map as a dotted line, keyed as an unmarked trail. The map is accurate to a point.

The moderate-difficulty trail is self-guiding in its entirety.

Directions: From Exit 19 off I-87, take NY 28 west through the towns of West Hurley, Boiceville and Shokan. Make a slight left onto NY 28-A in West Shokan for 3 miles before making a slight right onto County Road 42 (W. Shokan / Peekamoose / Sundown/ Watson Holow Road), following Bush Kill. After 3.9 miles, you will see the parking area on the left. State and Forest Preserve signs are posted nearby. Cross Kanape Brook to the trail, or jeep road, to park.

GPS coordinates:[masked],[masked]

The hike:

This is a pleasant hike up a small mountain that overlooks NYC's first and largest reservoir. The trail (marked with red disks) follows an old carriage road along the Kanape Brook. Notice the stone walls and foundations along the way. After 2.5 miles, you reach the low point on the ridge connecting High Point and Mombaccus Mountain. Turn left here (a sign points the way). You will soon see the returning loop trail on the left - continue straight. Over the next mile, the route is much steeper - climbing almost 1,000 feet. At the summit, there are anchor bolts in the rock where an old tower once stood. Nearby in bushwacked accessible fields are wild blueberry patches and vistas of the Shawangunks range to the south. Continue on the red trail.


There is a designated campground site with a firepit and field clearing at 1,600 feet that we will hit on the return loop since the hike is a lollipop loop.

Recommended Equipment:

  • 3 Season Tent
  • Backpack
  • Sleeping bag (20 degree or higher in rating)
  • Sleeping mat / pad
  • Trekking poles (optional/recommended)
  • Polyester/synthetic hiking clothing (layers are advisable)
  • Rain jacket / shell
  • Hiking Boots, wool socks
  • Headlamp
  • 2 1-liter bottles or 2-3 liter camel bag for water
  • Water purifying tablets or a water filter
  • Food for 2 days/1 night
  • Stove, pots, utensils


Since the main trail straddles a brook, we will monitor the weather up until a few days before the hike to make sure the mud is not an issue; if there's a string of wet days, we may postpone the outing until June/early July.


You agree when you sign up that you are responsible for your own preparedness and well-being and will hold no one else liable in case of injury or mishap. You agree not to hold the Organizer, Assistant Organizers, or any other members responsible for any injuries, mishaps, or any other situation that may happen at a planned event. Your attendance to an event signifies that you have read and accept the terms of this liability waiver. The complete liability waiver can be found on the PAGES section of this meetup site.

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  • Azaaf

    Good times!

    1 · August 6, 2013

    • Amy


      August 7, 2013

  • Mike

    So the 3 of us, possibly a 4th, are still anticipating driving up tomorrow a.m. If you're still planning on joining Ed, text me in a.m. before you leave or en route, when you get there -[masked]

    August 2, 2013

    • Mike

      I'm not holding much to the 30% chance of light rain - if anything it will rain on the early side and into Monday, weather reports read.

      August 2, 2013

  • Mike

    Guys- looking forward to Ashokan hike this weekend - as of now the weather is looking ideal.. 80 degrees on Saturday going down to 60 at night, and high of 75 on Sunday.

    July 31, 2013

  • robyn

    Hey guys-- what time are people returning on Sunday???

    July 30, 2013

    • Mike

      Depending if and where we stop for eats on the way back (possibly Kingston, NY), most likely back in NYC between 5 and 8 pm.

      July 30, 2013

  • Marlon

    Amy, sorry I have to drop out. Hope to see you all another time.

    July 29, 2013

  • Mike

    Right now, Ariella, Azaaf and Marlon have messaged/emailed me about a spot in the car driving up from NYC, so their spots are reserved unless they tell me otherwise within 3-5 days of the hike.

    Azaaf: You're welcome to use our Stoic tent (2-person tent), as long as you can carry on your pack (~4 pounds).

    1 · July 24, 2013

    • Azaaf

      Thanks, Mike. Yes I'd appreciate you letting me borrow the tent.

      July 26, 2013

  • Azaaf

    Anyone have extra room for 1 in a tent?

    July 24, 2013

  • Sally

    Mike, I will also need a ride. And judging from the other comments, I might be lucky and there's one spot left. Is that true?

    July 18, 2013

  • Ariella

    Would greatly appreciate a ride share from NYC area. Willing to share costs, of course.

    July 15, 2013

  • Marlon

    Mike, I'll need a ride. If you have a spot, what do I owe you? Thanks, Marlon

    July 14, 2013

  • Edward W.

    Im not sure about guests

    May 26, 2013

3 went

  • Mike
    Yoda, 70+ meetups,
    Event Host
  • Amy
    65+ meetups, Co-Organizer

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