The Great Catskill Fire Tower Challenge Part 1

The North Face
The North Face
2101 Broadway
to 10:00PM
5:30AM to 10:00PM
Arrive by 5:15AM
15.0 miles
4,109 feet
elevation gain

This trip is currently unavailable.
About the trip

Conquer all five fire towers in two days

What We Love

  • Back to back Saturdays in the Catskills
  • Summit all five fire tower peaks
  • Challenge yourself
  • Get a cool patch for completing both days

Your Day

The Catskill fire towers were constructed to facilitate forest fire prevention and control in the Catskill Mountains. Out of 23 towers originally built between 1908 and 1950, only five remain. Some people will take a full day to hike to just one fire tower, but we’ve super-charged these trips to reach all five in only two days. Upon completion of both days, each participant will earn the official Catskill Fire Tower patch. Embark on an ambitious, historical adventure when you take on The Great Catskill Fire Tower Challenge! Today's hike will have you starting early at the Red Hill Fire Tower, then making your way to the Balsam Lake Fire Tower. You'll end the day at the Tremper tower, having completed three of the five. Come back next week to conquer the final two!

This challenge consists of back to back Saturdays. Make sure you register for Day 2 on September 21 here!

Perfect for: Experienced hikers, fit adventurers up for a challenge

Share Trip
Level 8/10
4,109 feet elevation gain
15.0 miles
The North Face2101 Broadway
5:30AM to 10:00PMArrive by 5:15AM

Here’s what you need


Essential Gear
  • Lunch
  • Ample snacks
  • At least three liters of water
  • Backpack pack Need a recommendation? Check out Deuter!
  • Weather-appropriate clothing. For a great selection and discounts, visit our partners
  • Sunscreen
  • Headlamp
Recommended Gear
  • Hiking poles
  • Gaiters


Essential Clothing
  • Comfortable athletic clothing
  • Hiking boots with non-cotton socks (required)
  • Hat
  • Jacket
  • Dress in layers to adapt to changing temperatures

What's Included

  • Expert guides
  • Transportation
  • Park permits
Not Included
  • Meals
  • Gratuity for your guide

Drive to Meet

Have your own transportation? Select the "drive to meet" option at check out. You'll meet your guide at the Plattekill Travel Plaza at 6:45 AM. From there you'll follow the van about an hour to the trailhead.


Level 8

Strenuous - For advanced and very fit hikers only

If you yearn to touch the sky and think the rewards outweigh the risks and extreme conditions, a Level 8 trip is what you’re looking for. You will be called upon to prove you belong among the best. Only inner fortitude and perseverance will get you and your team to the top and back safely.


You should be ready for up to ten hours a day of pain, challenge, and constant small victories. Prepare for this by racing in triathlons, training for a marathon, and keeping up your hiking skills.


You should expect to be hiking twelve to thirty miles per day.


On Level 8 trips you will be trekking in rugged mountains with exposed terrain and loose features.

Elevation Change

There could be elevation change of 10,000+ feet per day with some altitude travel likely.


Up to 17,000 feet.


Weather conditions can be quite different from the city in the mountainous regions we visit. Temperatures can be quite cooler as we head north or to higher elevations. Keep your eyes out for an email from our team a few days in advance of your trip. That email will provide updated weather conditions and will alert you to anything additional you should put in your pack to prepare. We head outside in any weather, as long as we know it's safe, and we don't let a little rain or wind ruin a chance for an adventure. You can contact us at [email protected] if you have any questions about preparing for trail conditions.