Saturday, January 15, 2022

The approach to Mount Colden from Avalanche Pass has some of the most striking scenery in the Adirondack Mountains. It is also a particularly demanding trail, suitable only for experienced hikers. The trail consists of scrambles, boulders, and ladders, and the winter conditions in the Adirondacks produce deep snow, sheets of ice, and temperatures as low as the -20’s and -30’s.

If you are looking to test yourself in one of the most demanding and technical environments in the Northeast, this trip is for you! You’ll learn crampon, ice axe, and snowshoe techniques as well as the skills to stay warm and safe in harsh winter conditions and the basics of avalanche safety. When not hiking in a winter wonderland, we’ll enjoy a stay at the historic Adirondack Loj and evenings in front of the fireplace with good food, good company, and board games!

Experience: This trip is for experienced hikers with prior winter hiking experience. Please contact us at for more information.

Accomodations: Shared rooms at the ADK Loj. Limited private rooms available for an extra $70 per night. Please email us at with questions and requests.

For multi-day trips, as a precaution, we ask that you get a COVID-19 PCR test 3-5 days prior to the trip, regardless of vaccination status.

Day 1 (January 15th)

We’ll depart at 7:00 am and stop for lunch en route to the Adirondack Loj in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains. We’ll then test our gear for the next day and make adjustments as necessary during the warm-up hike up Mount Jo. Your guides will demonstrate how to adjust and secure crampons and snowshoes, and throughout the hike you will receive instructions on crampon and ice axe use, as well as tips for staying warm and dry in winter conditions. After a moderate scramble to the top, gorgeous views of the Adirondack Mountains will open up right in front of us.

After dinner at the Loj, the guides will go over route planning and decision making on challenging hikes, and you will break up into teams to try your hand at making a plan for the next day. That evening we’ll do individual gear checks and get a good night’s sleep before summit attempts the following morning.

Day 2 (January 16th)

We’ll start with breakfast at 4:30 in the morning and an Alpine start on the trail by 5:00 am. You’ll need your headlamp as we start on the trail before sunrise. You will experience the challenge of winter conditions in the mountains, navigating sheets of ice or deep snow to make to the summit. Our guides will be there to help and keep you safe every step of the way. At the end of a long day, you’ll arrive back at the Loj to relax, enjoy a delicious 3-course dinner, and unwind with some post-dinner board games.

Day 3 (January 17th)

After a good night’s rest, we’ll pack up, eat breakfast, and relax for the leisurely drive back to New York City, stopping for lunch along the way.

Level: Intense (Learn More)

Mileage: 12.8 miles

Elevation Gain: 3,061 feet

Group Size: 2 - 9 participants


The North Face, UWS

Check-in Time: 6:45 am, January 15th

Departure Time: 7:00 am, January 15th

Return Time: Approximately 8:00 pm, January 17th


This trip has a $20 limited-capacity charge.

While COVID-19 remains a concern, we are limiting our van capacity to a 10-person maximum, including guides, and leaving the middle seat empty in each row. The trips have a $20 fee to accommodate the changes we need to make for the COVID protocol. The fees will only be in effect while we limit capacity on trips. Learn more about what we are doing to keep everyone safe.

Wear (*starred items are available for rent at an extra fee)

  • Mountaineering boots* (required)
  • Ice axe* (required)
  • Crampons* (required)
  • Leg gaiters
  • Wool or synthetic socks (no cotton)
  • Moisture-wicking, non-cotton base layers (top and bottom, no cotton)
  • Fleece
  • Insulating top and bottom layers
  • Fully waterproof top and bottom layers that can be worn over all other layers except puffy
  • Puffy (850+ fill) that can be worn over all other layers
  • Waterproof, insulated mittens (gloves alone are not sufficient)
  • Goggles
  • Balaclava
  • Long underwear for sleeping
  • Wool hat
  • Fleece hat
  • Liner gloves
  • Neck buff
  • Sunglasses
  • Comfortable car shoes


  • Money for lunch stops on the road
  • Personal toiletries and towel
  • Snacks (we will provide snacks and lunch for summit day)
  • Water bottles that can hold at least 3 liters total (NO hydration bladders – will freeze)
  • Backpack (large enough to fit all the extra layers and supplies)
  • Headlamp (required)
  • Sunscreen
  • Extra pair of wool socks
  • Extra gloves
  • Trekking poles (optional)