The last time we did Mount Tremper Catskills fire tower challenge, it was hot and the climb seemed endless. Today, it was a beautiful day so we decided to redo this tower challenge. Once we got to the parking lot there were already two cars there. Since it was President’s Day, people were off and enjoying the nice weather outside. We started the hike and were pleasantly surprised that we did not need our spikes. A short walk in and the trail started to change.
Most of the trail was good and did not require microspikes until you came past the registration box. This is where the trail opens up and is a wider carriage road all the way to the tower. We delayed putting on the spikes until it was no longer avoidable. A lot of the sections were just a sheet of ice that was starting to melt. I was worried that my Yaktrax would be useless but they did great. As long as it’s not below freezing outside with shinny ice, my tractions are good.
Last time we climbed to Mount Tremper fire tower it was our third tower and we were drained from the heat. Someone also ended up losing his shirt by the lean-to and we had to climb back a mile to get it. This time, I’m glad to say, no one lost anything. When we got to the tower we were a little disappointed that the top cab was closed. Last year it was the only tower which was open and we were hoping it would be open this time as well. After taking a few photos and recording some videos, we headed back down.
Use Your Microspikes!
Going down the trail was a different experience. Nihad fell down twice and almost lost his GoPro battery the second time. Surprisingly, I didn’t go down but could have if Nihad wasn’t around. On our way down we saw a family that was not prepared and was hiking off trail, in the woods. I was surprised that made it as far as they did but they still had at least a mile and half more to go.
While we were about half a mile away to our car, we met another family that was struggling to come up the trail. They were sitting and asked us how long it took us to get up to the tower. We said we’re at hour three so about an hour and half. The mom was impressed by that which tells me that it must have taken them a very long time just to get to this spot. She also saw our shoe traction and said that we came prepared. This was their first time hiking here and they didn’t know it would be icy. Long story short, make sure to be prepared. Bring your shoe traction or microspikes or crampons if you’re going to the Catskills. The higher you climb up to Mount Tremper fire tower, the more snow and ice you will encounter.Hiking Tremper fire tower YouTube video