Indian Head Mountain Loop

Catskill Park

View from Indian Head Mountain - Photo by Daniel Chazin View from Indian Head Mountain - Photo by Daniel Chazin

This loop hike climbs nearly 2,000 feet to the summit of Indian Head Mountain, with spectacular views.

42.133827, -74.081967

From the parking area, go back to Platte Clove Road, turn right, and walk along the road for about 750 feet until you see a “Long Path” sign on the left. Enter the woods, heading south on a footpath, and cross Plattekill Creek on a “kingpin” bridge. The Long Path climbs through an attractive evergreen forest, traversing the Platte Clove Preserve of the Catskill Center for Conservation and...

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Trip Reports

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June 02, 2024
Many Views Are Obstructed, This Hike Is NOT For Dogs
On 5-31-24 I did the Devil's Path/Jimmy Dolan Notch loop from the parking area on Prediger Road, which is most of this route. Many of the viewpoints are obscured by tree cover, and if someone is doing this route for views they may be disappointed. The best view was the southeast one on the right (the third "star" on my 2013 map), and that is a beautiful spot to sit and have lunch. The view from Jimmy Dolan Notch was also obscured, but maybe I didn't go far enough out on the rocks. Before I took the JDN trail back to the parking area, I continued on the Devil's Path to the eastern summit of Twin Mountain, and that is a SPECTACULAR view, and well-worth the climb. Easily the highlight of the day. I then backtracked to the JDN trail, and took it back to the parking area. That trail sure felt like more than 1.6 miles, but perhaps I was just wiped from all the climbing I had done. Total mileage for my hike was 7.2 miles according to my phone, and it took me about 6 hours. All the trail sections I covered are in beautiful shape, and immaculate- I only picked up two small pieces of trash, and had to do a minimal amount of pruning in a few spots. I have nothing but huge respect for the maintainers and sawyers who work on these difficult to access trails. I was looking for the sign indicating 3500 feet, but either it is missing, or I wasn't paying attention when I passed it, as I did not see it. Although the parking area was about 2/3 full when I got there (11 AM), I did not see too many people, just a few here and there, but I did encounter a couple with two dogs who were having trouble getting the larger dog down one of the descents. I tried to assist them, and eventually they were able to get the dog down by going off trail, but I would not recommend bringing your dog on these trails unless you have a harness and ropes, and the dog is comfortable being lifted/lowered with them. Overall, it was an enjoyable day on the trails, and I am looking forward to doing Sugarloaf Mountain the next time I go back to this area.
Michael K7
September 03, 2015
Indian head loop
<p>A very nice loop, and a great introduction (for me) to climbing in the Catskills. &nbsp;I measured the distance as 7.3 miles on my GPS watch. &nbsp;There were two of us, both adults, and we felt the loop could be done in 5 hours or less if one moved along and did not take lengthy breaks. &nbsp;We had a nice viewing of 2 large bear cubs scampering down a nearby tree and then disappearing, to liven up the day. Other than that, very little in the way of wildlife or even birds. &nbsp;The forest was very quiet on our mid-day hike. &nbsp;The description of the hike posted here was very accurate. &nbsp;Great views along the way up and at the summit, such as it is. &nbsp;Hardly any on the way down.</p>
October 08, 2011
great hike!
<p>Did this hike today with the family - or a very similar one. &nbsp;we parked on Prediger Road and did the devil's path / jimmy dolan loop from there instead. trails show signs of a lot of care with much evidence of stone work and corduroy over the many wet patches. a couple of post irine blowdowns still across the trails but nothing that's not easy to bypass. wife and kids made it up the steep scrambles with no complaints, and the views from the overlooks are spectacular. at oct 8 we're probably a week ahead of peak foliage. we detoured to jimmy dolan's notch by following the herd trail behind the sign and enjoyed the view from there too. decent from there was nice and easy. at the car, the GPS read 6.70 miles total for the hike, and we spent a leasurely 6 hour 10 minutes on the trails</p>
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