View Full Version : range trail and sawteeth

05-21-2004, 09:09 PM
I am wondering if anyone has hiked the wolf jaws, armstrong, gothics and sawteeth in one outing. If so is there a preferred direction or trail that might make it doable in one day. It seems reasonable on the map but I realize their are spots which may be one way. Thanks.

05-21-2004, 10:11 PM
Yes, We started from camp at Johns Brook Lodge. We followed the Ore Brook Trail to the Gothics-Saddleback col. From there it was up towards Gothics. The trail to Sawteeth over Pyramid is before the summit of Gothics. We then proceeded to Sawteeth then returned to do Gothics. From there it was Armstrong and the Wolf Jaws. Then a descent fro the col back to JBL. This was a very long day, alot of climbing. If I were to do it again I would do it from the Ausable Club and do the Wolf Jaws first and Sawteeth last. This would eliminate having to reclimb most of Gothics. Good luck it's a great day of climbing.

05-22-2004, 07:57 AM
I understand the lake trail up Sawteeth from Lower Ausable Lake is spectacular. Since I did Sawteeth in the winter, I went via the Rainbow Falls trail. I will be going back to do it again via this route.

Pete Hogan
05-22-2004, 09:29 AM
My recommendation ( for what it's worth) is to ascend to the Saweeth/Pyramid col via the AMR Lake Road and the Alfred E. Weld trail. The road is tedious (at best), but nevertheless provides access to what many consider the best (ATIS) hiking trails in the High Peaks.

Your hike presents a serious challenge, but it has been done in one long, tiring, but extremely rewarding day. Be advised that after leaving the middle section of the Weld trail there is no water on this route until your descent and therefore carrying as much water as you possibly can is strongly encouraged.

After reaching the Sawteeth/Pyramid col on the Weld Trail, the RT route to Sawteeth's summit is conservatively an hour. After returning to the col, the ascent to Pyramid Peak is quite steep in sections and takes about 45 lung-dusting minutes to reach.

However, Pyramid Peak, at 4595', IMHO, is the most incredible panoramic view in the entire Adirondack Park. But don't take my word for it. Tony Goodwin, editor of the ADK High Peaks Region Guide states that Pyramid, " offers the single most spectacular view in the Adirondacks."

My log record shows a 20-minute descent from Pyramid/ascent to Gothics, followed by 45-minutes to Armstrong, 60-minutes to UWJ, 45-minutes to WJ col and a RT to LWJ of 35-minutes.

Be advised that there is only one contingency trail (Beaver Meadow Falls Trail) in the col between Gothics and Armstrong. Once you decide to continue on the Range Trail to Armstrong, there are no other emergency or back-up routes until you reach the WJ col.

From the WJ col, it is nearly all descent on the Wedge Brook Trail, West River Trail and Canyon Bridge to the Gate and eventually the road leading to public parking on Rt. 73. The descent time from WJ col is about 2.5 hours on "Gumby" legs to the Gate.

Plan on a conservative estimate of 12 hours to complete the loop. I would advise more in order to be able to linger on these rugged summits. It is, as stated previously, an extreme challenge, but an unforgettable one given the right weather to enjoy the summits.

IMO, on a good weather day, there are very few hikes that compare to this. Enjoy!

05-22-2004, 10:43 AM
How long (time) was the hike from the gate at AMR to Sawteeth? I'm interested in the same loop. Where does the water end on the Weld Trail?


Pete Hogan
05-22-2004, 05:19 PM

My hiking pace is by no means quick, but it is purposeful. With sufficient R&R stops, the ascent from public parking on Rt. 73 to the summit of Sawteeth via the Lake Road and the Weld Trail has been consistently around 3.5 - 4.0 hours ("door to door").

The water I spoke of is Cascade Brook which the Weld Trail crosses around 3100 feet (if it is available -- depending on weather, conditions, etc.). It may not be a reliable source so plan accordingly.

BTW, the Weld trail crosses this unreliable stream only once, so you might want to be prepared with your own supply.

I usually carry a minimum of 4-5 liters for the entire loop as described above.

05-22-2004, 05:33 PM
Very helpful info. Thanks

05-22-2004, 09:51 PM
Pete has a very accurate trail discription. As for Pyramid all I have to say is WOW, he's right again. It's definately one of the best views around. Right up there with Mount Adams and Haystack.

Don't get sucked into the Scenic Trail to Sawteeth as an ascent route. It's nice but pretty tough;and with 5 other peaks on the agenda, you'll need all the leg strength you have. Save that trail for another day; when all you want to do is Sawteeth. Of course that's just my 2 cents.

Silverback--4 hours is about how long it took me to get to Sawteeth from the gate. The entire loop from the gate back to the gate, at a moderate pace and lucnh I believe was 10-12 hours. But I did the loop in the opposite direction from this side. Doing the WJ's first.

05-22-2004, 11:01 PM
Thanks to all...

...for your replies. I especially appreciate the in depth descriptions from Pete and Spence. It sounds like a daunting but possible dayhike. I'll certainly fill the camelback with plenty of cytomax and hit the trail early. Probably wait until in midseason form and if possible a cool day!

05-23-2004, 07:14 PM
IMHO, the views from the scenic trail up to Sawteeth are not that great for the effort required.

05-24-2004, 12:00 PM
I did this loop last year. Went up the Scenic Trail to Sawteeth. STEEP, and a lot of up/down near the top. Once on Sawteeth, the rest of the range was relatively easy... until Lower Wolfjaw. I also think that Pyramid has one of the best views (attached).

I believe it took me 8 hours, but I was moving at pretty fast pace and didn't linger long on the summits.