The Red Dot Trail is simply a trail marked with red paint dots on the trees. While it has a state trail register, there are no state trail disks on the trees. This trail is on land owned by Paul Smiths College and is maintained by the college. With the Jackrabbit Trail also in the area there are several options to add distance, but the Jackrabbit Trail can also make it slightly confusing. Aside from the Jackrabbit Trail there are also various unmarked footpaths and state property line trails that meander through the area, adding to the potential confusion but also adding options for added distance and loops.
Trailhead Directions: From the intersection of Routes 3 and 86 in Saranac Lake, follow Route 86 toward Paul Smiths. Continue through Gabriels and Easy Street and start looking for White Pine Road on the right one-half mile past Easy Street. Follow White Pine Road for a short distance to the boat launch for Osgood Pond on the left. The trail leaves from near the water at the boat launch.
Trail Conditions: The trail is hard packed and well-maintained, little to no mud under most all conditions. Footing is even with very little rocks and roots.
Trail Description: From the trail register you will run over a small footbridge and then along an inlet of Osgood Pond. You can continue along this path and follow another outlet and eventually reach a lean-to on Church Pond. Continuing in this direction you can continue on over delightful terrain through open woods and work your way back.
Back along the outlet, you passed a footbridge over the water. Crossing here will give you more options for running the Red Dot. On this side you will come to an attractive esker. The Red Dot stays below the esker but a secondary trail heads up and along the esker and drops you down to a lean-to on Osgood Pond. If you follow the secondary trail it will kick you back onto the Red Dot near the lean-to.
These are only two of the options along this trail network. It is highly recommended to try out a bunch of different options of running along the Red Dot and use some of the secondary trails as well as the Jackrabbit Trail to change up the pace and the scenery.
Trail Format: Loops or out-and-back
Trail Distance: Main loop is roughly 2.5 miles
Runner Recommendations: Beginner to Intermediate
Approximate Time: Dependent on route created