Most Popular Winter Trailhead
Upper Works to Four-Corners or over Mount Marcy
Round Trip Distance
18.5 miles over Marcy, 19.2 miles from Upper Works
Average Round-trip Time
10 to 12 Hours over Mount Marcy, 11 to 13 hours from Upper Works
Winter Obstacles to be Aware Of
Do not attempt to cross Flowed Lands or Lake Tear of the Clouds unless the conditions warrant. If not broken out the herdpath ca be tough to follow in its entirety.
Over Mount Marcy
Please see the Mount Marcy page on details on how to access the summit of Marcy. From the summit of Marcy you will descent off the south side toward Four-Corners and go over Schofield Cobble. The descent is fast and somewhat steep. It is 1.1 miles to the intersection; head right here and cross Lake Tear of the Clouds if the ice conditions are good.
At the west side of Lake Tear of the Clouds you will come to the herd path on the right. The path starts out moderate but soon gets very steep. The entire path is wooded right up to the last few hundred feet. The summit is the winter is much nicer due to the fact that you ae standing on many feet of snow. 360 degree views await you in the winter.
From Upper Works
From Upper Works follow the trail to Flowed Lands and Lake Colden which isn’t all that demanding and can be accomplished relatively fast. Once at Flowed Lands depending on ice conditions it is common practice to hike over the Flowed Lands to access the trail near Lake Colden. If you don’t like the idea of hiking over the frozen waters you can also opt to use the trail, which goes up and over several rolling hills, requiring additional elevation gain and loss.
From the dam hike along the Opalescent River and continue on the trail past the Uphill Lean-to and the intersection for Feldspar. The climb remains steady and eventually you will come to Lake Tear of the Clouds.
From the description of the herd path please see above.
Please refer to our basic list of winter gear recommendations for day trips and remember this list is only a recommendation and you should take into light your experience, group size, length of trip, conditions, weather forecast, and any unforeseen incidences.