Adirondack Nordic and Snowshoe Trails
Cross-country Ski and Snowshoe Center
REMINDER: The VIC building is closed for the month of April, and reopens for regular spring business hours on April 29. Trails are open dawn to dusk but are unmonitored and unmaintained in April.
During the winter months, the Paul Smith’s College VIC becomes a cross-country ski center with over 25 miles of trails for classic skiing, skate skiing, and snowshoeing. The varied terrain is great for beginners and experienced skiers, with many loop options and connector trails. The VIC often gets and retails noticeably more snow than other places in the Adirondacks, which means the VIC’s trails make great skiing when snowfall is limited.
Classic Ski Trails
Classic cross-country ski trails are typically groomed 4 feet wide with an ATV and grooming equipment. Track is set when conditions permit. Classic ski trails are open to snowshoers who must walk on the side, avoiding all tracks.
WOODS AND WATERS TRAIL: This trail is a 3.0 mile (one way) route that crosses through the varied habitats of the VIC property. Cross the floating bridge, ski through open hardwoods and conifers and through a dense balsam section by the lean-to on Little Black Pond. Follow the red trail markers.
HERON MARSH TRAIL: This is a 3 mile loop that circles Heron Marsh. Features of interest include Shingle Mill Falls, the Lester family home site, several observation platforms, a 900’ boardwalk, and scenic vistas across the marsh. Follow the light grey trail markers.
ESKER TRAIL: This route is accessed from the Logger’s Loop Trail. The trail features a significant climb with switch backs and a series of enticing vistas. The 1.5 mile connector trail is in the center of the VIC property. There are challenging up and downhill grades on this recently logged terrain. Please use caution! Ski the trail clockwise to best navigate steep terrain. Follow the light green trail markers.
BOBCAT TRAIL: This trail is the connector route from the Paul Smith’s College campus. The 1.25 mile trail can be accessed by the VIC building or across the road from the Saunders Sports Complex. Follow the orange trail markers.
SILVI TRAIL: This one-mile trail intersects with the Woods and Waters Trail, leading through a forest plantation which was developed on the site of the St. Regis Golf Club. Follow the blue trail markers.
Skate Ski Trails
These trails are typically groomed 8′ to 10’ wide with the VIC’s quads and groomers. The trails are packed and rolled as conditions permit. Skate trails can be used by non-skate skiers. However, those on classic skis or snowshoes are asked to stay to the side of the trail.
EASY STREET: This trail is a one mile loop trail accessed from the Logger’s Loop Trail. Follow the light blue trail markers.
LOGGER’S LOOP: This loop is a 6 mile loop trail linking restored logging and skid trails. Skiers will experience varied terrain, a few narrow spots and a hairpin turn thrown in for good measure. Follow the dark green trail markers.
FOX RUN: This trail is a half mile, rolling connector trail accessed via Logger’s Loop. It can be bumpy and patchy with lighter snow. It provides a way for skiers to avoid steep terrain on Logger’s Loop. Follow the dark red trail markers..
SKIDDER TRAIL: This trail cuts across the silviculture area of the VIC. Skiers can explore varied hard and soft wood forests and plantation pines in different stages of succession and management. Varied animal tracks are often visible. Follow the orange trail markers.
Snowshoe trails are typically packed by snowshoers. The VIC hires members of the PSC snowshoe team to help pack down these trails, and the rest is done by our visitors or our groomer. Most designated snowshoe trails can be skied on with adequate snow and appropriate skier ability.
BOREAL LIFE TRAIL: This trail is an approximately 1 mile loop with two access trails either from the gazebo near the parking lot or an intersection with the Jenkins Mountain Road. The trail wanders through a forest of pine, spruce, fir, hemlock, cedar, tamarack, and mixed hardwoods. A significant feature of the trail is the 1600’ long boardwalk that allows visitors to explore life in a spruce swamp and bog. Follow the orange trail markers.
JENKINS MOUNTAIN TRAIL: This is a 4.5 mile (one way) trail with many route choice options. Snowshoers can choose to follow the Jenkins Mountain Road, which is also used by skate skiers. For a more sylvan experience, follow the designated dark blue trail markers through a mixture of woods trails and long sections of an old logging road. Noteworthy features include eskers, beaver ponds and 2514’ mountain summit. This trail is often packed to the beaver ponds for classic skiing. Follow the dark blue trail markers.
BLACK POND: This is a 2.5 mile trail accessed via either the Long Pond Trail or the Keese Mills Road trail head. The loop offers a variety of features including lean-tos, mixed forests, a fish barrier dam, varied mature forests and plentiful animal signs. Follow the dark orange trail markers.
LONG POND TRAIL: This is a half-mile trail between the Jenkins Mountain Trail and the Black Pond Trail. It runs along the western shore of Long Pond. In places, the trail is narrow and side cut. Follow the light green trail markers.
BARNUM BROOK TRAIL: This one-mile loop trail begins at the gazebo near the VIC parking lot and meanders through second-growth forest to two overlooks with good views of Heron Marsh and St. Regis Mountain. Follow the light blue markers.