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Blackhead
Catskill 35 Index CHH Index NJ1K Index

This peak is usually done in conjunction with Black Dome and Thomas Cole. This makes sense since getting up to the ridge is the longest part of the hike. Each of these three peaks is challenging alone and even more so as a trio. Both of the Blacks have some areas with rock scrambles and exposed rock faces.




Trailhead Coordinates
Name Coordinates
Batavia Kill N42.2886 W74.1143
Barnum Road N42.2639 W74.1767

Quick Look - Big Hollow from the East
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 4.4 mi. 1740 ft. N42.2677 W74.1053 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear left on the yellow-blazed Batavia Kill trail. Follow this yellow trail for .9 miles where it meets the blue-blazed Escarpment Trail. Take a right and follow this trail for 1 mile until the junction with the yellow-blazed Blackhead Mountain Trail. This trail is EXTREMELY steep at times and rises about 1300 ft. in less than a mile. Be prepared to do some climbing up "stairs" and over rocks and roots. After the climb you will be at the summit of Blackhead Mountain. Stop to look around at the scenery on the way up since there isn't much of a view from the summit. Retrace your route to return to the parking area.


CHH peak profile

(The image above is the vertical profile for the hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA. This includes the trail up the east side of Blackhead and then back down to the PA.)


Quick Look - Big Hollow from the West
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 4.5 mi. 1922 ft. N42 16.06 W74 06.32 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear right to stay on the red trail. A yellow-blazed trail goes off to the left. After another 1.4 miles of ascent with switchbacks to make the climb "easier", you arrive at the Blackhead Mountain trail with only .65 miles to the summit. There is a rather steep ascent here over an open rock face. Make sure you have a good foothold and look back over your shoulder for a great view of Black Dome. The exposed rock that you see is where you will be shortly as you ascend that mountain. A more stable and equally fine view is available as you finish this short, steep climb. Retrace your route back down Blackhead to the col where you picked up the yellow trail. At this point retrace your route to the parking area.



CHH peak profile

(The image above is the vertical profile for the hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA to Lockwood Gap, up Blackhead and back down.)


Quick Look - Black Dome and Blackhead from Big Hollow
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 5.6 mi. 2570 ft. N42 16.25 W74 08.2 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear right to stay on the red trail. A yellow-blazed trail goes off to the left. After another 1.4 miles of ascent with switchbacks to make the climb "easier", you arrive at the Blackhead Mountain Trail. Turn left onto this trail and climb .65 miles to the summit. Once you reach the flat rock and trail junction that mark the summit, turn around and retrace your path back to the col. Continue straight ahead on the red Black Dome Range Trail for .6 miles to the summit of Black Dome Mountain. As you climb over the steepest rock scrambles, hold on and look over your shoulder to see Blackhead Mountain. From the summit of Black Dome retrace your route back to the col between Black Dome and Blackhead. Turn left to stay on the red trail and proceed back to the parking area.



CHH peak profile

(The image above is the vertical profile for the hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA. This includes the trail to Lockwood Gap to the Col between Blackhead and Black Dome and then to the summit of Blackhead and then Black Dome.)


Quick Look - Blackhead Range from Big Hollow
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 6.7 mi. 2850 ft. N42 16.06 W74 06.32 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear right to stay on the red trail. A yellow-blazed trail goes off to the left. After another 1.4 miles of ascent with switchbacks to make the climb "easier", you arrive at the Blackhead Mountain trail with only .65 miles to the summit. There is a rather steep ascent here over an open rock face. Make sure you have a good foothold and look back over your shoulder for a great view of Black Dome. The exposed rock that you see is where you will be shortly as you ascend that mountain. A more stable and equally fine view is available as you finish this short, steep climb. Retrace your route back down Blackhead to the col where you picked up the yellow trail. At this point you can simply retrace your route to the parking area if Blackhead was your only goal for the day. If you want to include the other two mountains, get back on the red trail and follow it for .6 miles to the summit of Black Dome. As you climb over the steepest rock scrambles, hold on and look over your shoulder. The exposed rock you see on Blackhead is where you were just a little while ago. From the summit of Black Dome you continue for another rather uneventful .8 miles to the summit of Thomas Cole Mountain. To return, retrace your route back to the col between Black Dome and Blackhead. Stay on the red trail and proceed back to the parking area.

CHH peak profile
(The image at the left is the vertical profile for the entire hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA. This includes the trail to Lockwood Gap, up Blackhead and back down. It then proceeds up Black Dome and Thomas Cole before returning the same way to the Gap.)


Quick Look - Loop from Big Hollow
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 4.5 mi. 1840 ft. N42 16.06 W74 06.32 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear left on the yellow-blazed Batavia Kill trail. Follow this yellow trail for .9 miles where it meets the blue-blazed Escarpment Trail. Take a right and follow this trail for 1 mile until the junction with the yellow-blazed Blackhead Mountain Trail. This trail is EXTREMELY steep at times and rises about 1300 ft. in less than a mile. Be prepared to do some climbing up "stairs" and over rocks and roots. After the climb you will be at the summit of Blackhead Mountain. Stop to look around at the scenery on the way up since there isn't much of a view from the summit. Go right on the Blackhead Mountain Trail and descend .65 miles to the col between Blackhead and Black Dome. There are some nice viewpoints on the way down. In the Col turn right on the red-blazed Black Dome Range Trail and hike 2.0 miles back to the parking area.

CHH peak profile

(The image above is the vertical profile for the hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA up the east side of Blackhead to the summit. It then descends the west side to Lockwood Gap and proceeds back to the parking area. Of course, this loop can be reversed.)


Quick Look - Blackhead Range Loop from Big Hollow
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 7.0 mi. 2800 ft. N42 16.06 W74 06.32 Google Maps

Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear right to stay on the red trail. A yellow-blazed trail goes off to the left. After another 1.4 miles of ascent with switchbacks to make the climb "easier", you arrive at the Blackhead Mountain trail with only .65 miles to the summit. There is a rather steep ascent here over an open rock face. Make sure you have a good foothold and look back over your shoulder for a great view of Black Dome. The exposed rock that you see is where you will be shortly as you ascend that mountain. A more stable and equally fine view is available as you finish this short, steep climb. Retrace your route back down Blackhead to the col where you picked up the yellow trail. At this point you can simply retrace your route to the parking area if Blackhead was your only goal for the day. If you want to include the other two mountains, get back on the red trail and follow it for .6 miles to the summit of Black Dome. As you climb over the steepest rock scrambles, hold on and look over your shoulder. The exposed rock you see on Blackhead is where you were just a little while ago. (You can skip the next part about Thomas Cole Mountain if the two Blacks were your goal for the day.) From the summit of Black Dome you continue for another rather uneventful .8 miles to the summit of Thomas Cole Mountain. To return, retrace your route back to the col between Black Dome and Blackhead. Stay on the red trail and proceed back to the parking area.

CHH peak profile
(The image at the left is the vertical profile for the entire hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA. This includes the trail to Lockwood Gap, up Blackhead and back down. It then proceeds up Black Dome and Thomas Cole before returning the same way to the Gap.)


Quick Look - Blackhead Black Dome Loop from Big Hollow
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 5.3 mi. 2300 ft. N42 16.06 W74 06.32 Google Maps

CHH peak map

A variation of the above route is possible. Park at the trailhead at the end of Big Hollow Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome range Trail and hike .6 miles. At this point bear left on the yellow-blazed Batavia Kill trail. Follow this yellow trail for .9 miles where it meets the blue-blazed Escarpment Trail. Take a right and follow this trail for 1 mile until the junction with the yellow-blazed Blackhead Mountain Trail. This trail is EXTREMELY steep at times and rises about 1300 ft. in less than a mile. Be prepared to do some climbing up "stairs" and over rocks and roots. After the climb you will be at the summit of Blackhead Mountain. Go right on the Blackhead Mountain Trail and descend .65 miles to the col between Blackhead and Black Dome. There are some nice viewpoints on the way down. See the route above for the remaining possibilities.


CHH peak profile

(The image above is the vertical profile for the entire hike starting at the Batavia Kill PA. This includes the trail up the east side of Blackhead and down into Lockwood gap. It then proceeds up Black Dome before returning the same way to the Gap and then back to the PA.)


Quick Look - Blackhead Range from Barnum Road
Difficulty Round trip Total climb Location Internet Maps
Trail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficultyTrail difficulty 8.4 mi. 3730 ft. N42 16.25 W74 08.2 Google Maps

CHH peak map

Park at the trailhead on Barnum Road of the Maplecrest Road. Find the red-blazed Black Dome Range Trail that follows an old road for about .45 miles. Turn left off the road and register for the hike. Follow the red trail which climbs steadily for 1.6 miles over two hills named Caudal and Camel's Hump. Some believe that Camel's Hump should be surveyed again as it appears to be over 3500 feet and far enough away from Thomas Cole to be considered a new 35. On the way up the Caudal there is a lookout off the trail to the right. It offers some nice views to the south. Some parts of this trail are steep while others have switchbacks to help keep the climb manageable. Near the top of the Camel's Hump is another more popular lookout to the right. This also offers views to the south but they are more extensive. Continue on the red trail for another .85 miles to the summit of Thomas Cole Mountain. The descent from Camel's Hump into the col is not very difficult. There are very few views along the way. At one point as you walk along the flat area in the col between the Hump and Cole, Thomas Cole Mountain is directly in front of you. The final ascent up Thomas Cole is steep in parts and rather long. There are no views from the summit.

Continue on the red trail for .8 miles to the summit of Black Dome. The descent into the Col and subsequent ascent of Black Dome are both steep and you will repeat them as you retrace your steps back to the parking area! Just before the summit on Black Dome is another lookout again to the south.

Continue on the red trail for .6 miles to the col between Black Dome and Blackhead. As you descend the steepest rock scrambles, hold on and look over your shoulder. The exposed rock you see on Blackhead is where you will be in just a little while. Go straight ahead on the yellow-blazed Blackhead Mountain trail with only .65 miles to the summit. There is a rather steep ascent here over an open rock face. Make sure you have a good foothold and look back over your shoulder for a great view of Black Dome. The exposed rock that you see is where you were a short time ago. A more stable and equally fine view is available as you finish this short, steep climb. Retrace your route back down Blackhead to the col where you picked up the yellow trail. Continue straight ahead on the red trail and over Black Dome and Thomas Cole for a second time! Proceed back to the trailhead.

CHH peak profile
(The image at the left is the vertical profile for the entire hike starting at the Barnum Road parking area to the summit of Blackhead and back.)