These three ponds are located in the Sentinel Range and offer excellent loop opportunities. There are two trails that lead into the area and either can be used to create a loop to the three ponds. Copperas Pond offers great camping potentials with a lean-to located on its shore. Copperas Pond is also a great swimming hole during the hot days of summer.
Primary Trailhead: From the intersection of Route 86 and Route 73 in Lake Placid, follow Route 86 toward Wilmington. Continue for 5.5 miles to the southern trailhead on the right and an additional 1.1 miles to the northern trailhead also on the right.
This is a 3.5 mile hike, loop, along a well-traveled trail with mostly moderate conditions.
From the southern trailhead for Owen Pond start over a moderate course on the newly rerouted initial 0.2 miles. The new portion has been in use for a while but there are still some very soft areas. You will quickly come to the original trail alongside a brook in an area that is notorious for being wet and slippery. As you pass by an erratic on your right, you will begin to slowly move away from the brook and climb slightly before dropping again to the brookside and eventually Owen Pond.
Past Owen Pond you will find the trail to be slightly more moderate than most of the other sections of this trail. Before hardly any time at all you will see Copperas Pond with the sweet views of Whiteface Mountain over the far side. Passing through a camping area and over a long boardwalk you will come to an intersection. Right heads to Winch Pond and left goes along Copperas Pond and meets up with the northern trail approach to the region. For this loop follow left along Copperas Pond.
The tread here is narrow in spots and quickly comes to a trail sign pointing right. Go right, left is the lean-to trail - a deadend. The trail now sweeps and goes over a few small hog-backs before it reaches another intersection. Follow here to the right; left will bring you steeply down to Route 86, the northern trailhead.
Family with Young Kids: Primary trail – 2.0 hours, loop
Experienced Hiker: Primary trail – 1.5 hours loop
Out of Shape Hiker: Primary trail – 2.0 hours loop