North Country Trail Association

New York

New York hosts nearly 700 miles of the North Country National Scenic Trail.

Hike dramatic glacier-formed ridges, deep verdant valleys, and secluded glens. Trek through rugged gorges and savor views of countless waterfalls. Gaze across spectacular lakes, and weave through thick hemlock forests and ancient rock cities dominated by moss. Follow historic paths and venture into secluded, mountainous wilderness.

The trail crosses a variety of notable land units and features in New York, including the Allegany, Watkins Glen, Robert H. Treman, and Pixley Falls State Parks,  Finger Lakes National Forest, multiple state forests, the Erie Canal towpath, and Adirondack Park. It also shares approximately 400 miles with the Finger Lakes Trail.

New York’s North Country Trail is maintained predominantly by the volunteers of one NCTA Chapter and two Affiliate organizations:

The state also hosts two official NCTA Trail Towns: Canastota and North Creek.

Additional Information

  • Browse a curated selection of the Five Most Notable Hikes Along the NCNST in New York. And savor the wilderness at a leisurely pace via the ADAK Challenge.
  • Please do not camp on private land. Unless posted as No Camping, all New York State Forests, Wild Forests, and Wilderness Areas permit dispersed camping (below 3,500 feet elevation) as long as tents are 150 feet from water (stream, pond, lake, bog) and 150 feet from the trail.
  • Adirondack and Finger Lakes Trail lean-tos are open to all (not just the first to occupy) and are labeled on maps.
  • To camp in New York State Parks or Department of Environmental Conservation Adirondack Campgrounds, one must register at the entrance gate or online in advance.
  • In the Finger Lakes region, the trail is on approximately half private and half public land. Please stay on the trail and avoid stealth camping; seek camping opportunities in state parks and state forests. Campsites and shelters are displayed on Finger Lakes Trail hiking maps.
  • Currently, the NatGeo maps provide the most complete picture of the Adirondacks’ landscape and backpacking infrastructure, which is required for navigating the North Country Trail in this area. Marking a route on the NatGeo maps would be best informed via the Section-by-Section guide on the ADK-Onondaga website and the NCTA’s online map. Once a route itinerary has been built, custom maps could be made on apps like CalTopo or GaiaGPS though carrying the physical NatGeo maps as a backup and reference is recommended.

Header photo by Mary Coffin