The Gatineau Hills are stunning year-round, but some of the best hikes around Ottawa are actually just south of the city.
Mount Marcy, the highest mountain in New York and the Adirondacks, is one of the most dramatic treks nearest to Ottawa. Located just a few hours by car, you'll never have to fly to BC or Alberta to see stunning peaks. This towering behemoth is one of the best peaks in North America. Period.
Although its 24km roundtrip trail may seem daunting at first, the hike to the summit is anything but a challenge. Mount Marcy isn't a technically challenging route and doesn't require special equipment. One would better describe it as a long walk. The trail leads you through a mix of exposed rock and forests - some of the most beautiful, untouched scenery in New York.
The hike can be done in about six hours and although the mountain is relatively close to Ottawa, an overnight trip is recommended. The trip can make for a fun summer camping adventure and can get you some bragging rights to say you climbed the highest mountain in New York.
Technically, Mount Marcy can be hiked year-round, but only the most avid and experienced of hikers should brave its trails in the winter time. Exposed ice and rock can pose serious risks. The best times to hike Marcy are between May and October. October is usually a more popular month than the rest because of the changing colours in the Adirondacks.
The best trail to hike is the primary trailhead from the Adirondacks Loj. From then on, the trail is well-marked up until the summit. Nonetheless, since Mount Marcy exceeds 5, 000 feet, prepare for any types of weather conditions.
So, what are you waiting for?