Route: Northville - Lake Placid Trail (NY)

New York, US
142 mi
Vertical Gain
17,000 ft

The Northville Placid Trail (NPT) is a 142 mile route running between Waterfront Park in Northville, NY to the Lake Placid History Museum (formerly a train station) in Lake Placid. There are varying perspectives regarding the true Northern Terminus, whether at the intersection of Averyville Rd. and Military Rd. or further at the old train station in Lake Placid, accounting for variation in stated trail distance depending on the source. All current FKT’s run the full distance including road sections between Waterfront Park and the Lake Placid History Museum (the old train station). Historical FKT's include the 122 mile variation that omitted road sections and the old 133 mile route before trail was built from Northville to Benson in 2013.

The NPT is one of the oldest hiking trails in the United States. Its construction began in 1922 and was completed in 1924 as the first major project of the newly formed Adirondack Mountain Club. It bisects the Adirondack Park running through river valleys and crossing some of the wildest, most remote areas of the Northeast. Relatively flat, the length of the trail includes just 17,000 ft of elevation gain with the highest point at just 3,008’ near Blue Mountain Lake. However, given its remote nature and the topography of the Adirondack Lowlands, major blowdown, flooding, beaver activity, ankle-destroying roots and rocks, and tricky stream crossings are typical all along the trail – making what is otherwise a runnable trail slow-going in sections. Fresh water is available in abundance. The trail is traditionally hiked Northbound. However, FKT attempts are often done Southbound to take advantage of an overall elevation loss of approx. 1040’.

Additional information:

Northville-Placid Trail - Lake Placid-North Elba Historical Society (

Northville-Placid Trail (

Northville-Lake Placid Chapter of ADK – Dedicated to the preservation and promotion of one of New York's premier hiking trails. (

Northville-Placid Trail – Schenectady ADK (

GPS Track


I am going to attempt to set the FKT on the entire Northville-Lake Placid Trail, starting in Lake Placid and ending on Main Street in Northville. My attempt will include the paved sections of road at both ends of the trail. I will be leaving Lake Placid at approximately 5am on Thursday, July 5, 2018. This will be a supported attempt. I will be using a Garmin Inreach mini to do live tracking of my attempt and will include the link here in advance. I will also include a link to a Facebook site that will include updates/pictures from support crew.

Did you start this attempt?  How did it go?  I am looking at attempting this route in the late fall, any information would be appreciated. 

Thank you, Mike

Hey all! Starting on the morning of Monday, July 1st 2019, I'll be attempting to lower the unsupported record on the Northville-Placid Trail. Simultaneously, I'll be trying to bring down the overall FKT (Sheryl Wheeler, 39:16) in unsupported style. Of note, a significant portion of trail has been added since the previous FKTs, resulting in very little road walk and the addition of a few miles. I'll be starting in Lake Placid and ending in Northville, at the official termini of the path.

My Garmin InReach tracker link is here:

I'll also be recording with my watch for backup/more detailed data.

If service is available, I may post updates to my Instagram story. IG link:

(For clarification, I am of no relation to the previous "RobR" who posted here.)

I ended my attempt after 61 miles due to huge amounts of blowdowns and mud, which was taking a big toll on my feet. I should have waited until autumn to let things dry out a bit.

I will start an unsupported attempt on the now 138 mile NPT starting around 8am on Tuesday August 13, 2019 at the Averyville Rd start of the trail and go SB.  I do not have sleeping gear and thus plan to just go continuous.  I will track the run with my watch and a rechargeable battery pack.  Updates via IG @avermily and post run data can be found on Strava @Andrew Vermilyea.  It has been 4 years since my unsuccessful supported attempt that I pulled out of at 100 miles.  I hope this attempt will push towards Sheryl's overall, supported time, but who knows!


Andy Vermilyea, Castleton VT

Why are all the FKT attempts n-s when the trail is a s-n trail?

Late to the game here, but the northern terminus is ~1k feet higher in elevation than southern terminus.

I will be doing recon toward an unsupported FKT in the fall, perhaps likely doing the entire route in a supported manner in the next week or two (July 28-Aug 5).  I will verify specific date, direction, start / finish to be run once details are set.

Daven W. Oskvig, Amherst, NY

Publicly announcing now a supported attempt on the NPT starting on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 heading north to south.

I abandoned at Wakely Damn after 16 hrs covering 65 miles which started at the Lake Placid train station.  I will recon second half at some point and hope to make a go of the complete NPT as an FKT in September.  

I'm going to set out from the Lake Placid train station tomorrow morning around 5am, hoping to set an unsupported FKT on the NPT southbound. I will be recording on an inreach mini and my watch. I plan to sleep for a bit somewhere south of Wakely Dam. 

Jim Pergolizzi, Pittsford, New York

Bailed at Lake Durant after a clogged water filter and upset stomach. Beautiful trail. I'd like to give it another shot.

Heading NOBO on Wednesday early morning from Northville as overall supported FKT attempt (at minimum a recon of second half not covered a couple of weeks back).  I will be tracking / recording on my watch.

Daven Oskvig, Amherst, NY

Hi, is the current fkt route considered to be the 122 mile route or the ~138 mile route? This pages description indicates everyone cuts out the road sections on each side, but the current unsupported fkt did the 133 mile version (possibly? not sure which of these is accurate). Anyone weighing in would be appreciated, thanks.

I am as far from a source of authority as one can get, as I guess we all are on here, but I will tell you my thinking, because I wondered the same thing and spent a fair amount of time looking into it. There is no 122 mile route any longer. According to, the southern end of the trail changed in a couple different ways from 2013 to 2015. First, the trail was rerouted, changing the southern terminus of the wooded section of the trail from the parking lot at the northern end of Godfrey Road, around nearby Woods Lake, to Benson Road. That eliminated 1.6 miles of road walking and added a couple miles of trail. Then, a few years later, the trail was extended from Benson Road south to Collins Gifford Valley Road, which eliminated 5.5 more miles of road walking, but added a few more miles to the whole trail. Best I can tell, the trail from the corner of Averyville and Military Roads in Lake Placid to Benson Road is about 125 miles, and the whole trail is 138.

If you're gunning for the unsupported FKT, I think you should go train station to train station. I wouldn't fault anyone for calling the northern terminus the corner of Averyville and Military Roads, as that's where the official website shows the end of the trail. But since it historically, at least from what I've read, went to the train station in Lake Placid, it's only another 0.6 miles, and the account on this site says that Drew Haas' current unsupported record was from train station to train station, there'd clearly be no questions if you go train station to train station. 

For a supported attempt, from all accounts, while Sheryl Wheeler bested Tim Seaver's 122 mile (or there about) trailhead to trailhead FKT (Godfrey Road on the south), she also continued on to Northville (for a full 133 miles). Though the trail she did was different, as I mentioned above, and had over 10 miles of roads on the southern end at the time, I'd say that someone claiming the overall supported (or un, I suppose) FKT would have the best argument if she or he finished the entire trail (now 138 miles) in less than her overall time of 39 hours 16 minutes. I would be interested to see what would happen if someone bested her trailhead to trailhead time of 35:13, ending at Benson Road or even the Godfrey Spur Trail on the south, and then failed to get to Northville (just assuming, as all attempts I've see have been southbound) under her overall time. 

User Picture
Profile picture for user straittail53

I’ll be attempting male solo unsupported thru hike  FKT of the NPT southbound from Placid train station parking lot  to the northville arch across from the Stewart’s (138 miles) The intent is to improve Drew Haas’s time of 60.5 hours(understanding that his FKT was set on a 135? mile trail heading north bound).  I will be recording my progress via coros/spot x Planned start:
Thursday 13 August 2020.  

Jesse Canfield 

East Jewett NY

“Who the heck is this guy?”


Got past Cedar Creek Heading south and pulled the plug. Number of factors.  Tough conditions,  some minor pack issues, and foot issues that have never ever occurred before on similar terrain/distances.  Walk of shame back to wakley to sit and be devoured by those GD flies while waiting for my ride. 

User Picture
Profile picture for user Marcelo Arruda

I will attempt a male solo FKT going SOBO, starting on August 28 at 6am.  My progress will be trackable via a live feed (

Thank you Jesse Canfield for your recent posts :o)

After running the trail in 2 halves in late-July and then mid-August, I'm making a final attempt having now seen and run the whole thing to link those halves together.  I'm heading SOBO out of the old depot parking lot in Lake Placid on Saturday, September 19, 2020 @ 3 AM.  I will be tracking on my garmin.  This is a supported attempt hoping to set the mark for the current trail (138 miles).

We will be attempting an overall unsupported FKT starting October 2 at 6AM with the intent of improving Drew Haas's time of 60.5 hours. We will be starting at the Lake Placid train station parking lot, heading SOBO, and ending at the NPT arch in Northville. Progress will be trackable via live feed (

Katie Ghidiu and Nathan Huckle

Aaack. BAIL. Found out on trail someone in my little circle turned up COVID positive. Had to get home and didn’t seem smart to push on with an exposure just in case. WTH, COVID!

I am planning a Southbound women’s unsupported effort beginning at approximately 4 am on Saturday June 12th with a goal of completing by Monday June 14th at 4 pm for a total of 60 hours to best all current and historical unsupported efforts. This is attempt #2. Please send all the good mojo my way!!!!

That was a most excellent adventure and another epic failure on the books. Northville Placid Trail FKT attempt was a DNF. I did 103 miles in about 42 hours and it was glorious. The trail was wild and beautiful. I followed lots of moose tracks but didn’t see any. I was a little off the men’s fastest known time (there is no known unsupported women’s) so I decided to run through the night last night to catch up. At 2 am I got caught on trail in a fantastically close lightning storm and torrential downpour. I took cover on low ground tucked into a boulder, got into my emergency bivy and my sleeping bag inside of that. But it was raining rivers and soon everything was soaked. I started to become hypothermic so once the rain and lightning let up I headed back to the nearest road for a pick up. That was attempt number 2. I’m sure I’ll try again!

Headed out Friday September 3 around 6 am to attempt a SOBO unsupported effort with a goal of <60 hours to best all current and previous unsupported times. Third try, you know what they say! Track me here:

User Picture
Profile picture for user bradleydavidson

We are planning on doing the NPT south to north unsupported fkt starting 08-17-2022

Our attempt ended with Brad’s ankle injury.  Hitchhiked out from wakely dam. Way delayed entry!  Maybe next time!!

Me and my friend Nicolas will start a self-supported FKT attempt this friday morning, July 21st 2023. As the trail this summer has been flooded multiple times, we are aiming for 4 days because of those difficult conditions.

User Picture
Profile picture for user markdavidson

On 8/19 Todd Bitterman and I are making a north to south self-supported FKT attempt.  Our goal is to beat the current overall unsupported time of 2 days 8 hrs.

this may be overly optimistic, given the large amount of rain this season, and reports of poor trail conditions.  

We will have food/ clothing caches at 35 and105 miles, with a vehicle to sleep in, if needed, at wakley dam.  

No matter what, it will be an adventure!!

User Picture
Profile picture for user markdavidson

Aborted attempt at wakely dam.  Trail conditions from Lake Placid to Long lake section were even worse than anticipated.  After the fact learned that beaver dam breaks had completely taken out parts of the trail, washed away bridges, made the entire distance a complete “mud-fest”. Lost time and wasted energy from slogging through knee deep mud and streams made any attempt futile.

possibly a south to north attempt would have saved the worst for last, at least allowing for some r running on the more runnable trails on the southern 1/2, but who knows.

all in all was an adventure for my buddy and I. He says he’ll never try it again, but who knows, maybe I can talk him into another “adventure” next year

Aaron Dana and I are headed out tomorrow morning southbound, looking to lower the men's and, if we can, overall unsupported FKT.