Devil's Path Three Day Backpacking Trip - Catskills, NY
Backpacking the Devil’s Path
- Backpack the Catskill Mountain’s notorious Devil’s Path trail.
- Summit five of the 35 Catskill peaks with 15,000’ elevation gain and loss total over three days.
- Built for the athletic adventurer looking for the ultimate weekend challenge.
- All meals included - except powdered energy drinks and energy bars
- snacks are provided but if you have a preference and would like to bring something, please make sure it is small, lightweight and will easily fit into a shared bear canister
Enticing hikers from around the world to New York's Catskill mountains with its reputation for grueling ascents and descents; the Devil’s Path continues to grow in notoriety and has become a must do trail for outdoor enthusiasts . Considered by many to be the most difficult trail throughout the east coast, this adventure is built for the adventurous and experienced backpacker. The 25 mile backpacking through trip on the Devil’s Path is broken up over three days with each day providing unique challenges and rewarding vista views of the Catskills and surrounding area. Led by our experienced guides you will conquer the exposure of cliff bands and brave steep summits; hiking, and sometimes scrambling your way through the path over the next summit and to the final descent on this trail named for the devil.
Summiting Indian Head, Twin, and Sugarloaf Mountains.
Your Adventure starts at the Prediger Rd trailhead our guides will separate the group gear and we will begin hiking the first leg of the Devil’s Path. A mile and a half of relatively flat ground leads us to our first ascent up the east side of Indian Head Mountain. Lunch will be spent taking in a vista view near the summit of Indian Head Mountain. Following lunch a half mile descent takes us down Indian Mountain and drops us into Jimmy Dolan Notch and towards the second ascent of the day up Twin Mountain. From the summit of Twin Mountain we descend into Pecoy Notch where we will prepare for our final and most challenging ascent of the day- Sugarloaf Mountain. With 1,000’ elevation gain in one mile, summiting Sugarloaf will be the highlight of the day both for its breathtaking views and because it marks the day’s final summit. Our descent takes us into Mink Hollow where we will make camp and enjoy a much earned dinner prepared by our guides.
Total distance backpacked: Approx 9 miles with 3,000’ elevation gain and 2,500’ elevation loss.
Summit Plateau Mt, take in views from Danny’s Lookout and rest at Diamond Notch Falls.
After a filling breakfast prepared by our guides we will break camp and make our bag lunches to pack on the trail. After refilling water bottles from a spring we will make our way to the steepest ascent of our three day journey – Plateau Mountain. With 1,000’ climb in less than a mile this ascent will at times feel more like rock climbing than hiking as we scramble up the demanding mountain to the summit. Two miles of easy ridgeline trail reward the morning’s hard work and deliver stunning views from spots such as Danny’s Lookout and Orchard Point. Our ridgeline stroll leads to a 1.3 mile descent into Devil’s Tombstone campground where we will rest our legs and fuel our bodies. After our lunch and rest, we will put our packs back on and continue hiking the trail to South Hunter and Hunter Mountains. We will be rewarded along the trail with views at Geiger Point and finally Diamond Notch falls. Just a half mile from our final night’s camp; the falls will provide a welcome break and an ideal spot to cool off. This night we will make camp at the Diamond Notch Shelter and enjoy another fantastic dinner before heading off to sleep.
Total distance backpacked: Approx 8.6 miles with 2,950’ elevation gain and 3,100’ loss.
Enjoy vista views from Rock Overhang and Buckridge Lookout en route to the final summit; West Kill Mt.
After enjoying breakfast in camp we will break camp and make our bag lunches. Our final day will consist of incredible views from Rock Overhang and Buckridge Lookout along the trail to our final ascent up West Kill Mountain, the tallest peak of the Devil’s Path. The summit on West Kill Mountain will serve as our lunch spot for the day. Following lunch is a long gradual descent; we will pass St. Anne’s Peak as we make our way to the trails end at Spruceton Rd where our group’s van will be waiting for us. On the route back to the meeting location, we will stop in Phoenicia, NY for a pizza dinner where we can recount the weekend’s trials and tribulations and most importantly celebrate successfully conquering the path named for the devil! After dinner we will journey on to where we met to say our final goodbyes.
Total distance backpacked: approx 9 miles with 1,400’ elevation gain and 2,000’ loss.
- Tents (3 season, 2 person)
- Cooking gear
- Stoves and fuel
- Water filter
- Group first aid kit
- Bear bags
Gear not provided
- Backpack: large internal frame or external frame 60L - 80L
- Pack cover (waterproof)
- Waterproof pack liner
- Sleeping bag (rated around 20-35 F)
- Sleeping pad
- Rain jacket and pants (lightweight waterproof and breathable)
- Lightweight down or synthetic jacket
- Hiking boots (heavy duty, waterproof, broken-in; should rise above ankle)
- Hiking pants (quick-drying, lightweight; zip-off legs are great. No jeans!)
- Hiking shorts (quick-drying, lightweight)
- T-shirts (synthetic)
- Long sleeve shirt (synthetic)
- Hiking socks (wool or synthetic)
- Synthetic Sock liners (optional)
- Sun hat with wide brim
- Mid-weight fleece jacket or wool sweater
- Mid- or lightweight thermal bottom made of synthetic or wool
- Down jacket or vest (early spring or fall)
- Wool or fleece hat (early spring or fall)
- Wool or fleece gloves (optional)
- Powdered drinks
- Headlamp with spare batteries and bulb
- Plastic bowl, spoon, travel mug with lid
- Sunglasses and retainer strap
- Sunscreen (small amount not the whole bottle; min SPF 25)
- Lip balm (unscented)
- Personal medications
- Toothbrush & trial-sized paste
- Pack towel and/or washcloth
- Personal first aid kit (small and light with personal medication)
- Travel size wet-wipes
- TP system: toilet paper (not a full roll) & 1 Ziploc quart baggie & 1 Ziploc gallon baggie and plastic trowel
- 1 large plastic garbage bag
- Insect Repellant
- 3 liter water carrying system. Preferably 1 liter in form of a wide mouth nalgene bottle (making water purification easier) and a 2 liter hydration system (either as two 1liter bags of one 2liter bag)
Optional Field Gear (think about weight)
- Trekking poles (highly recommended)
- Pocket knife or small multi-tool
- Ear plugs
- Journal & pen
- Camera and accessories
- Favorite snacks or energy food (snacks are provided but if you have a preference and would like to bring something, please make sure it is small, lightweight and will easily fit into a shared bear canister)
- Comfortable closed toed camp shoes or cross trainers to be used at camp and on day hike
The Devil's Path trip has a 30 day cancellations policy, after that any deposits or payments are non-refundable. For all of our away trips, we highly recommend you purchase Travel Insurance.