1. Old Nye Ski Trail from Heart Lake to Indian Pass Brook
2. Follow unmarked trail from Indian Pass Brook to junction of respective Street and Nye trails
3. Ascend to summits of Nye and Street
Trip In A Nutshell:
This 8 hour round-trip hike heads west from Heart Lake, crosses Indian Pass Brook, then climbs to the summits of Street and Nye. The entire route is unmarked starting at the registration box located at the western (far) side of Heart Lake. From the ticket booth at Adirondack Loj the trail follows the Indian Pass Trail (ADK #75, McM #34) around Heart Lake's north side, south a bit still along the lake, and then connects into the Old Nye Ski Trail which is not far south of the sign in register on the west side of Heart Lake. Strictly speaking, the herd path starts at the Old Nye Ski Trail, since it is unmarked. From Heart Lake all the way to both summits the path is in fine condition and is excellent hiking for anyone capable of hiking any of the other of the High Peaks. The Old Nye takes you to Indian Pass Brook.
You will hike north along the brook a ways. Finding the correct place to cross has long been a problem because there has been no sign to indicate the proper spot. The brook is steadily shallow and wide and you could cross in many places. Which is the right place to cross? Fortunately, in October 2004 we received a report from David Cichon who had just returned from hiking Street and Nye. He reports that you should cross the brook at the point where you see a cairn close to the water on the opposite bank. Once you cross, head north along the brook a short distance and you will quickly pick up the trail where it turns sharply west and hugs the S side of a tributary that flows into Indian Pass Brook from the slopes of Nye.
Soon the trail will be high atop steep slopes that descend to the tributary which has eaten its way deeply into Nye's base. You will pass by very old machinery left perhaps by miners once upon a time.
At about 3.0 miles and well past the end of the tributary you'll reach an open, sparsely wooded, flat area with a large cairn and a carved sign on a tree that marks the trails to Street (left) and Nye (straight ahead). Nye's summit is a very short walk. Street will require 30-45 minutes to reach. The Street segment has a short boggy area that was dry when we passed by, but might be a minor problem in a wet year or after the thaws in Spring.
Today this is a good trail. We hiked it in 2001, not long after the trail was overhauled, then again in 2003. This hike from Adirondack Loj to the summits of Street and Nye Mtns used to be a nervous affair for hikers due to the many herd paths that confused and muddled things as you neared the summits. That situation was resolved by the 46'ers who rebuilt the trail with what might justifiably be called "tender, loving care" given the outstanding job they did! Today a single, good-to-excellent trail carves its way to the summits of both peaks. We rate difficulty as easy to moderate. It is only about 7 hours round trip on pleasant trails.
From Nye there are no views. You may just as well poke out both your eyes, don a blindfold, stand in a closet with the door shut, and put a bucket over your head... at midnight. However, from Street, the view in the photo above is available to the E, SE, and S if you follow a very short, obvious herd path that starts just past the summit sign. It takes you about 50 feet. The view there includes the MacIntyre Range, Santanoni Range, and the terrain in between. (See the photos and details below.)
Visit Heart Lake trailhead.