Meet the 6ers

Saranac Lake is a place where the mountains and lakes of the Adirondacks converge to create some of the most jaw-dropping scenery anywhere, and there's no better place to see it all than from the top of one of the six mountains surrounding the village. The Saranac Lake 6er program was born in 2013 as a way to get people to experience the beauty of these summits. The hikes cover a range of difficulty, with Mount Baker, which is located right in the village, offering the easiest path. We recommend starting there, then working your way up the others. Many consider either Ampersand or McKenzie to be the most difficult - see for yourself and let us know what you think!

Baker Mountain

That little mountain peeking between the downtown buildings is Mount Baker. It’s a little less than a mile to the top, where a couple of ledges award expansive views of the High Peaks in the distance. There are some steep spots along the way (it is a mountain, after all), so novice hikers should bring lots of water and allow enough time to rest — or to “stop and enjoy the view” — along the way.  Learn more

Distance: 0.9 mile one way

Elevation: 2,452 feet

Ascent: 884 feet

St. Regis Mountain

The only 6er with a fire tower on its summit, St. Regis is a long, fairly mellow hike that ends in 360-degree views of mountains and lakes. Make sure you don’t miss this awesome adventure!  Learn more

Distance: 3.3 miles one way

Elevation: 2,874 feet

Ascent: 1,266 feet

Scarface Mountain

The cliff-like scar that gives Scarface its name is in full view from Riverside Park, which is located right downtown on Lake Flower. This hike starts easy and crosses an interesting wetland before beginning an ascent up the mountain, where there’s a nice view just before the top. Learn more

Distance: 3.8 miles one way

Elevation: 3,088 feet 

Ascent: 1,480 feet

Ampersand Mountain

Ampersand isn’t a particularly long trail, but it is steep. The climb is well worth it, though, as the mostly open summit offers a breathtaking vista of High Peaks and the Saranac lakes. Learn more

Distance: 2.7 miles one way

Elevation: 3,353 feet

Ascent: 1,775 feet

Haystack Mountain

There are two Haystacks in the Adirondacks — one is a long, rugged, all-day climb to the third highest peak in the state. The other is one of the 6ers, and it’s a lot easier. The trail up our Haystack passes through a lovely forest before following a tumbling little mountain brook, which it crosses before climbing steeply to the wonderful summit view.  Learn more

Distance: 3.3 miles one way

Elevation: 2,864 feet

Ascent: 1,240 feet

McKenzie Mountain

Ambitious hikers do Haystack and McKenzie in one day, since their trails follow the same route for a good portion of the journey. McKenzie is quite a bitter taller than its neighbor, so make sure you’re ready for the steep climb that comes soon after the trail splits. There are several views near the top — be sure to continue to the last one, where a stunning and expansive panorama of peaks awaits.  Learn more

Distance: 5.3 miles one way

Elevation: 3,822 feet

Ascent: 2,221 feet

Learn More about the 6er Challenge!

screenshot from 6er website

Visit the official 6er Challenge website to learn more about the trails and how to earn your patch.

Be a good steward!

view from Baker Mountain

 

Become familiar with the 7 principles of Leave No Trace.

Register

Once a hiker has completed all six mountains, he or she is awarded a 6er patch and permission to ring the 6er bell in the Berkeley Green band shell. Register online to receive your official 6er patch and signed certificate of completion. Mail in your official 6er registration using our 6er Entry Form.

Don't Leave Home Unprepared

2 hikers with backpacks
  • Headlamp with extra batteries
  • Rain gear or poncho
  • Food
  • Water
  • Water purification tablets
  • First-aid kit
  • Map
  • Compass
  • Fire-starting kit
  • Emergency space blanket
  • Knife
  • Whistle for signaling rescuers

 

Looking for more information about hiking safety?  Check out the NYS DEC website.

 

Take note, intrepid explorers!

Those who can complete the 6ers in 24 hours are awarded the highly coveted Ultra 6er patch. Winter versions of each challenge are also available.

Don't know where to begin? No problem!

Try tackling the 6ers in the following order:

 

  • Baker
  • St. Regis
  • Scarface 
  • Ampersand
  • Haystack
  • McKenzie