View Full Version : Parking

07-15-2018, 04:52 PM
Heading to ADKs for first time in awhile. I remember posts in past about crowds and consequent parking overflows at trail heads. What's the latest news / regs / advice???

07-15-2018, 08:59 PM
They haven't screwed anything up too badly yet.

For better advice, name specific locations...

Tom Rankin
07-16-2018, 05:48 AM
Cascade and Porter (and Pitchoff) lots are now lined, in an attempt to (my assumption) limit parking to designated areas. Giant, the AMR lots, the Garden (which does have a shuttle), and the Loj are also very popular areas. The best advice is to go on a weekday or get a very early start.

Puma concolor
07-24-2018, 08:34 PM
You should probably just park in Lake Placid and walk. More sporting that way anyway. ;)

Daniel Eagan
07-25-2018, 04:51 PM
Latest DEC report says they will begin serious ticketing campaigns at overflowing parking lots. Holiday weekend last year they counted over 700 cars parked in an area with about 350 legal spots. If you are outside the lines at the new lots (which also include Chapel Pond and Roaring Brook) you are liable to get a ticket.

07-25-2018, 05:10 PM
Very sad, and stunningly stupid. A PR and safety disaster in the making, by the idiot government we pay for. And still NOTHING for trail maintenance, better bathrooms, more rangers, trailhead education, etc. Like I said, very sad. I can only hope that the harm is not as bad as I expect it to be...

08-06-2018, 08:35 AM
It's unfortunate that NYS is not spending even a small amount of tourist money on bathrooms, rangers, etc. Don't expect we'll see that unless there is a huge outcry.

08-06-2018, 02:59 PM
I was in Keene Valley over the weekend. The Garden was filled at 6:15 AM. There was overflow parking at the end of the road.

Ausable Rd parking in St. Huberts had plenty of room at 6:30 AM.

There was plenty of roadside parking at Giant / Rocky peak.

Overnight camping at the trailheads is not permitted. Get there early or plan on using the shuttle from Marcy field.

All lots had port-a-potties available

08-13-2018, 07:41 PM
They have striped and are about to enforce parking. Lot's of safety complaints about cars parked along NY73, and people are pooping everywhere along the trail or just off. Read some of the FB hiking forums and hair on fire complaints about the impending regulations.

Daniel Eagan
08-14-2018, 01:05 PM
In my opinion the next step is a permit system. DEC is already experimenting with that in the Catskills.

Mike P.
08-15-2018, 05:17 PM
Would Permits allow you to show up late and guarantee you a parking spot? How are the Facebook groups doing outside of summer? Most of us know there is no such thing as a "hiking" season outside of the Greens and High Peaks rules during Mud Season. We laughed when people thought the season ended after Columbus Day.

There may end up being a season soon, start on Columbus Day and end when the bugs start to slow down. Appears that bugs do keep some hikers away.

08-16-2018, 05:24 PM
The only permit so far is for one swimming hole in the Catskills. DEC is afraid to do anything that would slow down the governor's campaign to bring in visitors. I think permits are on the horizon but down the road.

09-18-2018, 08:10 AM
Here it comes:


Shockingly stupid and ill conceived.

Stay away from the Roaring Brook trailhead - the state is about to create a massive clusterf*** there, starting now.

09-20-2018, 07:12 AM
There's this report too. I guess I'll really be rolling the dice heading there on Columbus weekend. :eek:


09-20-2018, 09:12 AM
Yes, everyone is lining up to salute the flag that this is such a good idea. But if you stay away from the one or two areas where they are about to implement this cluster, you'll be fine. Just avoid the Roaring Brook / Chapel Pond corridor, and avoid Cascade Pass. It's easy to go around these areas on your way to come great destinations. Just study the road map.

(Sad that I am a resident of a town that's dependent on tourism, and here I am advising tourists to avoid my town...)

Mike P.
09-24-2018, 02:46 PM
They do need either more parking or additional access. The lots have not been improved since when? The list of other hikes isn't close to the same type of hike you get in that area. The 9N trip to Rocky Peak and Giant is classic and quite a bit more of elevation gain. The Crow lot is pretty busy already.

I wouldn't try to get into The Garden on a Friday afternoon or a Saturday. Seems that by 10:00, everything is booked. Can we start a rumor that scenic pictures are out of style on Instagram and FB, everyone would much rather see your lunch or dinner plate at (insert restaurant name here)

Currently I can't get my teens out early enough to beat the traffic, however, so far they don't pay the price yet. Next year, they can drop us off at the trailhead finally and they can walk the additional mile from the overflow lot....

09-25-2018, 11:09 AM
They do need either more parking or additional access. The lots have not been improved since when?

Most lots were designed the way they are now in the 70's as a means to control backcountry crowding, along with making it illegal to park along roads. This was later addressed in subsequent UMPs as having been ineffective. The parking bans were never enforced and it was very quickly realized that counting cars isn't an accurate means to determine backcountry usage.

I've always been a big advocate of "if you can't get there really early, get there really late." If you're up for the challenge of sunset summits, you'll find parking is much easier to deal with once the early risers have cleared the trails.

09-25-2018, 12:41 PM
...This was later addressed in subsequent UMPs as having been ineffective. The parking bans were never enforced and it was very quickly realized that counting cars isn't an accurate means to determine backcountry usage.

This is correct, and of course the inadequate parking is ineffective in reducing usage. All it does is create safety hazards, and headaches for the local communities.

But here they come to try it again, even though it has been proven stupid repeatedly. Very unfortunate (and textbook) management failure. And sadly, they have their cheerleaders in the local "green" groups.

10-07-2018, 07:17 PM
Got a sence of how small some of these lots are. Weather wasn't the best for a long hike but I did go up to Roaring Brook Falls. I was lucky enough to get the last spot at Giant Mountain Trail-Head. In the few minutes it took to get ready for the short hike, several cars entered and had to leave. It also looks like it's a new no parking along 73 in that area.

Mike P.
10-10-2018, 11:28 PM
Due to a stress fracture in my son's foot, a topic for me in 2019. Do I try and get 15 and 16 year old boys up early or pick a very remote area where a 10:00 start will have parking available?

10-11-2018, 09:17 AM
Mike, it does not have to be a remote area. You just have to pick an area with plenty of parking.

There used to be only one category of "limited parking": Small lots on private land or land without nearby road shoulders. So the parking was always limited at Elk Lake and the Garden, and to some extent ADK Loj (big lot, but popular area).

Now there is a new category: Places where there was plenty of parking, but the state has decided to destroy the parking. So far, this includes Giant (Roaring Brook) and Cascade. Plans include expanding this idiocy to Chapel Pond.

But there's still plenty of road shoulder parking in other areas.

10-18-2018, 12:24 PM
Here's where we'll get to see the serpent eating its own tail. King Andy will keep running his stupid f@cking TV ad campaigns in NY (downstate), PA, NJ, and elsewhere to get people to visit the ADK, while at the same time his own DEC/State Police have to deal with parking issues due to "overcrowding" in the High Peaks. The new slogan should be "Visit the ADK! You'll be able to see lots of pristine wilderness during all those miles of driving around looking for a place to park!" Hey, at least with parking the way it has previously been allowed, it isolated the majority of the trail damage to just a few peaks.

Oh, and since when is parking a state issue to control and not a municipality issue anyway? Did these towns contact the governor's office and ask for help because they can't deal with issue on their own, or is this just another heavy handed NYS initiative?

10-18-2018, 04:08 PM
Towns (like my Town of Keene) are the victims here. Tons of tourists are invited to visit, but the State does nothing to support it.
>Local volunteers do trail work and SAR to the extent they can.
>The Town and its local businesses fund the (now state mandated) handicap accessible portapotties at the trail heads (not a penny from the State for those).
>The Town has to put up with overflow parking, and sometimes frustrated visitors parking on lawns and in driveways.
>The Town funds the parking lot shuttle (not a penny from the State).

This has been a problem for the towns for several years, and the State provides no help.

The towns certainly did not request this most recent "intervention" which is making the situation sharply worse. This is a State initiative.

Tom Rankin
10-19-2018, 07:23 AM
Does the Town make a profit from the shuttle?

10-19-2018, 10:05 AM
No. The fees for parking at the Garden, and for the shuttle, are barely enough to keep the program running. On the bright side, Keene was able (finally) to get a more reliable bus this year. Until this year, the program was using an ancient bus that was in the shop as often as it was on the road. This program runs on a shoestring, and barely breaks even.