Saturday, May 9, 2015

Doubletop Mountain, Catskills

Date Distance Time Elevation Gain Average Moving Time Year to Date Miles
5/9/2015 5.9 miles 4 hours 48 minutes 1,912' 169.9

Trail Map
Catskill 3500 footer
Parking: See directions

Directions: Doubletop Mountain

Hike description:
Warm day, but we've been wanting to complete up the Catskill 3500 list, and the winter snow is gone from the Catskills. The beginning of the hike parallels a wide brook. The dogs were in heaven - running in and out of the water. The trail crosses the brook a few times. Water levels were low, so the crossings were easy. Well almost - I slipped on a wet rock and landed on my rear end in the water.

After looking online, we saw that there are two possible ridges that people follow to the summit. We originally were planning to hike the later of the two ridges. This would mean less bushwhacking. However, we decided to take the earlier ridge which meant a longer bushwhack, but a more gradual bushwhack. We brought our older dog, so we decided the longer bushwhack would be better for her. We ended up only needing to help her out 2 or 3 times to get up a rock or over a log. If we had taken the steeper shorter route, we probably would have had rock ledges to get her up. We were happy with our choice.

There were some obstructed views of Eagle, Big Indian, and Graham on our way up. Around 3/4 of the way up, it felt like we were occasionally hitting a herd path, but then losing it. When we reached the conifers near the summit, we found a very clear herd path. Woohoo! We let Trek lead the way to the canister. He is an excellent canister finder! There were actually a number of herd paths around the summit, but we didn't have too much difficulty finding the canister. Trek found it and stopped under it. Somehow he knows...

There is no view at the summit.

For the way down, I swear, we just followed our dogs down. They were able to find and stay on the herd path a little longer than we had been on our way up. Eventually they brought us to the route we came up the mountain (no path). We double checked our GPS occasionally to make sure the dogs weren't leading us astray. They weren't. They are amazing. After we got home, I checked our GPS track. Yes - after the herd path petered out, they had led us down exactly the same way we went up. My dogs are better navigators than I am!

Parking lot at the end of a dirt road

Easy level trail in the beginning

Some people hike to the waterfall

We started our bushwhack about 0.2 miles from this intersection

Another view of the same intersection - private property sign

Another view of the same intersection


Moxie needed a break on the way up, so she lay down under this rock

Around 3/4 of the way up - happy that we can now actually see our destination


After finishing our bushwhack portion, we turned right (away from parking) on the trail a brief way to stop for some stick throwing


  1. On more than one occasion I have sent my dog ahead of me with, "let's go home!" and he finds our way back to the truck. And when I come upon a creek crossing that looks a little rough, I send him first. That he hates to get wet helps because he'll find the easiest way across though it may take him some time.

    On one trip though we crossed a creek while he was coming up behind us. He decided his best option was a large tree angled over the creek. What he didn't realize was a) it didn't go all the way across and b) there was no room to turn around. Hilarity ensued, at least among us humans.

  2. That's funny - we kind of have the opposite problem. They are very good at staying on a trail, or navigating back on a bushwhack - but if there is water nearby, we are out of luck. They always run to water! All bets are off for staying on trail.