Steep climbs to a fire tower with great views of the Catskills and Taconics.

Peak Details

Height:  1,394ft  (425m)

Range:  Southern Taconics

Level:  Moderate

Scenic:   Yes 

Trail Type:  Fully Trailed

 Stissing Hiking Trails & Hikes

pink flag delineating new route up Stissing Mountain from Thompson Pond

Stissing Mountain: New Trail from Thompson Pond

A super fun new route (currently under construction) up a steep rugged side of Stissing Mountain.

Stissing Mountain seen from a distance at sunset

Stissing Mountain Fire Tower (Classic Trail)

A short, sharp huffer-hike to a very tall fire tower with amazing views of the Catskills and Taconics.

 Stissing Topography

 Summit Forecast: Stissing

The page URL below shows the weather at Stissing’s summit for the next six days.

If a foreacast for a peak is not directly available, this page may display a link to a nearby location.

Stissing Information

Stissing Mountain, located in Pine Plains, New York, is a small but stunning natural wonder that has captured the hearts of locals and visitors alike for centuries. Its unique geological history and breathtaking views make it a popular destination for hikers, bird watchers, and nature enthusiasts.

Stissing Mountain History

The Town of Pine Plains describes Stissing as, “a unique geological formation, a block of 1.1-billion-year-old Precambrian gneiss ‘floating’ on top of younger shale and sandstone.”

The geological history of Stissing dates back 400 million years to the Ordovician period, when much of what has become the eastern United States was covered by a shallow sea.

Over time, layers of sediment and organic matter were deposited on the seafloor, eventually forming the rocks and minerals that make up the mountain today. These layers were then subjected to immense pressure and heat, causing them to fold and buckle into the distinctive ridge that we see today.

The American Museum of Natural History has a permanent exhibit on the deep geological history of Stissing Mountain. The exhibit is housed on the first floor.

Historic Stissing Mountain

In more recent times, the history of Stissing Mountain has been intertwined with that of the Hudson Valley and the state of New York.

In the late 18th century, the area was a hub of activity for farmers and merchants, who established settlements and built roads and infrastructure to support their growing communities.

In the mid-19th century, Stissing began to attract attention from tourists and nature enthusiasts, who were drawn to its rugged beauty and gorgeous scenic views. The first recorded ascent of the mountain was made in 1848 by a group of local hikers, who marveled at the panoramic views from the summit.

After the Civil War, Pine Plains became a railroad hub, which ensured further growth. In the decades that followed, Stissing Mountain became a popular destination for visitors from all over the Northeast. Hotels and resorts were built in the surrounding towns, catering to the growing demand for outdoor recreation and relaxation.

As the 20th century dawned, Stissing Mountain continued to evolve, reflecting the changing social and economic landscape of the Hudson Valley. The growth of industry and the decline of agriculture led to a shift in the local economy, and the mountain became a symbol of both the region’s past and its future.

Stissing Mountain Today

Today, Stissing Mountain remains a beloved destination for visitors and locals alike. I love its rugged terrain and sweeping views that offer a glimpse into the beauty and history of the Hudson Valley.

Bird watchers also flock to Stissing Mountain in the spring and fall, when migrating species such as hawks, eagles, and falcons can be seen soaring overhead. In the winter, the mountain transforms into a wonderland, with snowshoeing, cross-country skiing drawing visitors from near and far.

The mountain’s trails wind through forests of oak, hickory, and maple, and the summit offers superb views of the surrounding countryside, the lakes below, the Catskill Mountains to the west, and the Taconics to the east.

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