Route: Catskills Fire Towers (NY)

New York, US
22.6 mi
Vertical Gain
7,500 ft

User jLimo posted about linking all 5 Catskills Fire Towers in a day. Note that this includes driving between the trailheads.

Has anybody posted about completing all of the Catskill Fire Towers in one day? Recently, I completed them in this order, unsupported. I carried all I needed for the entire day including water. While there are springs on some of the trails, they were not utilized. It was just myself for the driving as well, not sure if that makes any difference, but here are the basic details of the day.


Fire Tower # 1 - Overlook - Began @ 6:05 am
Fire Tower # 2 - Mt Tremper 
Fire Tower # 3 - Hunter Mtn - via Beck Hollow route off of 214
Fire Tower # 4 - Balsam Lake - via Beever Kill Rd trailhead 
Fire Tower # 5 - Red Hill - returned to my car at the trailhead @ 6:03 pm

*I also signed into/out of each of the register books for the day, and registered myself on the towers with register books: Hunter, and Red Hill. All towers were climbed to the top as well, but Mt. Tremper, and Red Hill were locked from getting to the actual viewpoint area.

Here is the gpx file from my moves count account

Total Time (including driving between the trailheads) - 11:58:29
Total Time (only ascending/descending the actual Fire Towers) - 7:26:33

42.0448136, -74.2754247


User Picture
Profile picture for user belted kingfisher

I did this is 8 hours and 37 minutes, it was my second time doing all 5 in one shot, both times were this year in 2019, however, I am choosing not to officially register this fkt due to the fact that there is driving in between towers, adding danger and breakage of the law depending on how fast one drives. All five were recorded on Strava , I switched the order because there was a faster order .


Do you care to share your order? Or better yet, just submit the time and share some details!

balsam lake, red hill, tremper, hunter, overlook. I had a great time, hunter was a slog and the descent of overlook was dangerously fast. Congrats to lauren longfeild, she beat my time by such a landslide i have to interest in regaining it from her. I did this twice, all five firetowers in a day. Therefore the seccond time i was simply racing myself and improving upon a previous time.

Planning on having a go at this on Saturday 7/25/20. Anybody have a good order to do the driving that gets driving time down under 3 hours? Also, I noticed there are two ways up Balsam Lake Mountain, one from Balsam Lake Trail Parking (shorter route to summit), and another from Mill Brook Rd starting North of the mountain (longer route to summit). It seems the longer route is more popular, but my intuition is that the shorter route is faster. Anybody have good reasoning for this? Thanks in advance, looking forward to a beautiful Saturday in the woods!