A few of Wilmington's best hikes
This challenge is designed for hikers who want to explore some of Wilmington’s best trails. The Wonders of Wilmington Hiking Challenge will take you to backcountry ponds, easily accessible waterfall, and big mountain views.
Planning for a hike in the Wilmington area doesn't have to be a challenge! Make sure you have all the proper gear and 10 essentials, follow Leave No Trace ethics, and abide by all rules and regulations. Unsure where to start? Talk to a local guide!
The different trails are between 2 – 8 miles round trip, and range from easy to advanced. Interested? Check out the hikes featured and plan your hiking trips today! After you've completed the hikes, don't forget to register and claim your patch.
1. Stag Brook Falls
Of the hikes in this area, Stag Brook Falls is one of the most unique. It's less than 0.5-miles to the largest of the falls; or you can complete a longer hike of ~1.5 miles round trip (your choice). Stag Brook Falls is located on Whiteface Mountain, so there is elevation gain. The picturesque 40-foot waterfall is located near the beginning of the trail; ending here is fine. Or, follow the brook up the mountain for an excellent couple hours of family-friendly hiking with numerous waterfalls and cascades. *Please note this waterfall is only accessible when ski season is not in session since the trail crosses ski trails.*
2. Cooper Kiln Pond
Cooper Kiln Pond is a moderate, 5.9-miles thru-hike. Set between the Stephenson Range and the Wilmington Range, Cooper Kiln Pond can be reached from two directions; you can choose which route you prefer or do a thru-hike if you have two vehicles. The trail traverses 5.9 miles between trailheads. This picturesque pond provides great views of the surrounding mountain ranges, a lean-to on its shore, and a healthy self-sustaining native brook trout population. Sections of the trail are steep and eroded, which may prove difficult for some users.
3. The Flume Knob
Flume Knob is a moderate to challenging, 4-miles round trip hike. This hidden gem in the region should not be missed. The trail begins in the Flume Trail System, multi-purpose trails open to mountain biking, hiking, trail running, cross-country skiing, etc. The Flume Knob connects at about a mile in; it is a more challenging ascent for foot traffic only.
4. Jay Mountain
Jay Mountain is a moderate, 5-miles round trip hike OR (for a more challenging alternative) an 8-miles round trip hike. The choice is yours! A moderate hike through an attractive mixed forest leads to a spectacular overlook. Stopping here is fine; it is the end of the marked trail. A herd path continues from the overlook along the ridgeline to the actual summit.
5. Marble Mountain
Marble Mountain is challenging, but is a "short" 2.4-miles round trip hike. This trail interlocks with the Flume Trail System and Whiteface Mountain trail; make sure you keep an eye on the trail markers. It does have some challenging aspects, including a steep ascent after intersection with the Flume Trails, but the reward is worth it.
6. Owen, Copperas, and Winch Ponds
This is a moderate, 3.5-mile loop hike along a well-traveled trail with mostly easy-to-moderate conditions. These three ponds are located in the Sentinel Range Wilderness Area 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. (Please be careful when parking and crossing the road.)
7. Whiteface Mountain summit (optional)
We want everyone to experience our greatest Wonder of Wilmington, Whiteface Mountain, in whatever way is most appropriate for you and your crew. If you are an experienced hiker, this is one of the Adirondack 46ers. In both the summer and winter, you can ride the gondola to the summit of Little Whiteface for a fee. In the summer, you can drive your car or ride your bike to the summit via Veterans Memorial Highway (there is a fee). Experiencing Whiteface Mountain from the top is optional for completing this WOW Challenge, but totally worth it!