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Black Dome Range Hike


Submitted By Michael Virdone

The Mountains & Stats

7 miles with 2800 feet of gain
  • Black Dome (3980 Feet, NY) globe Mountain
  • Blackhead (3940 Feet, NY) globe Mountain
  • Thomas Cole (3940 Feet, NY) globe Mountain

People On The Trip

Trip Report

     The weather was looking pretty bad for the Adirondacks so we headed south for the weekend. We camped overnight Friday and were on the trail by 7:15 Saturday morning. The route we selected was to go up to the Blackhead/Black Dome col, climb blackhead, and then traverse out and back to Thomas Cole. The trail starts off very gradual, it spends most of the time in the valley with the stream. Eventually the trail to the leanto breaks off and the climb begins. For the most part the climb is at a moderate grade (although a bit rocky).

      As we neared the top I was dreading the steep section shown on the topo map. To my surprise this section has some awesome switchbacks. Because of the gentle grade we made good time getting to the col. The climb up to the Blackhead ridge was pretty steep but we made quick work of it. We traversed the ridge and eventually arrived at the summit. We took a quick break at the summit before heading back to the col.

      At the col we began our second big climb of the day. Once again the climb was fairly steep but there were a few rock scrambling sections that made the climb exciting. We quickly arrived at the summit of Black Dome. We didn't spend long on Black Dome as we wanted to stay ahead of the weather (forecast called for thunderstorms in the afternoon). We hiked over to Thomas Cole fairly quickly and took another quick break on the summit (once we found where it was, I went a few hundred yards past just to be sure).

      As we descended Thomas Cole the clouds began to close in so we took the pace up a notch to stay ahead of the weather. When we arrived back at Black Dome the summit was completely socked in so we just kept moving. Unfortunately we missed out on the views from the ledges on our descent. After a nice quick descent we were back at the col ready to tackle the nicely switchbacked trail back to lower elevation. We made good time descending and were back at the car in what seemed like no time.

      I really enjoyed this hike, the trail conditions were good, and the bugs weren't biting. The area was beautiful and I can't wait to do some more Catskill hiking.

The Good and The Bad

The Good:

Nice quick hiking
Getting out ahead of the weather

The Bad:

Blisters, I need to learn how to take care of my feet

The Drive

Google maps brings you though some shady shortcuts


  • none
  • NYNJTC maps and the AMC Catskill Guide
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