Catskills Black Dome and Blackhead Loop
ElevationAscent: 2,245' 684 m
Descent: -2,247' -685 m
High: 3,976' 1,212 m
Low: 2,195' 669 m
GradeAvg Grade: 14% (8°)
Max Grade: 54% (28°)
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“A loop trail that ascends both Black Dome and Blackhead mountains with some limited trail overlap.”— Karl W
Head up the trail to the spur on your right (south). After this it is a very consistent moderate slope to the shoulder between Black Dome and Black Head. Go right (west) to the summit of Black Dome. There are a few steep spots requiring scrambling but there were plenty of good hand holds.
Black Dome is fairly flat and wooded on top (the pines give it a dark appearance from far away, hence the names). Head a little past where the true summit is for a lovely viewpoint to the south. Trace your path back to the shoulder then continue east up the clear trail to Blackhead. Again, the best views are before and after the true summit due to the pine trees. The loop part of the trail will take you down a very steep section before moderating on a lovely trail back to the parking area.
Note: you could easily add Tomas Cole Mountain onto this run by continuing west after Black Dome. This would not add a ton of distance, but will add a good amount of elevation. If you really fancy a long run or are backpacking, you could continue north after Blackhead along the ridge and bag Windham High Peak for another 35'er and a more complete loop.
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Need to Know, Dogs Allowed, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes, History & Background
Land Manager: NY Dept of Environmental Conservation