The fortieth on the list of 46 high peaks, Mount Emmons is the lowest mountain on the Seward range. It is also the most western peak of the 46 High Peaks, which makes it the highest peak until well past the Mississippi. It is very commonly climbed together with Mount Donaldson. The summit of Emmons boasts great views of the rest of the High Peaks, and a view of the Santanoni Range.
The path to Emmons is more isolated than most of the other 46 peaks, as the best approach is from the peak of Mount Donaldson, which is already rather remote. Because it is quite remote it is recommended you bring food and water with you. Also be sure to bring a map and compass, or hire a guide who can help you traverse the mountain. If you plan to use a GPS be aware that overhanging trees may interfere with the signal and make it unusable, so you may wish to have a backup plan for navigation.
The approach to Emmons follows the same path for Donaldson and Seward. You can hike all three peaks in one day, but it is quite a long and grueling hike at 18+ miles.
The herdpaths up to the summit of Donaldson can be reached by taking Rt 3 out of Saranac Lake toward Tupper Lake. After 12.5 miles, take a left at Corey’s Rd and follow it for another 5.5 miles. The trailhead is on the right.
The first 1.2 miles is a well used trail. Then you will take a right on an old woods road and continue for another 2 miles until you meet the Calkins Brook herdpath. This will wind along the brook and cross over it several times, as it rises steadily. The summit of Emmons is about a mile further on from the summit of Donaldson.
From the summit of Donaldson, the herdpath descends to the west side of the ridge between Emmons and Donaldson. It then begins to climb up to the top of Emmons. The trail is very open in some parts and provides some great views of both mountains. Once you reach the summit of Emmons, you’ll find some gigantic boulders that provide fantastic views, if you’re willing to climb them.