Goodman Mountain is a short, easy hike that for people of all ages and abilities that leads to an open summit and great view, renamed in 2002 for a civil rights activist with Tupper Lake roots
1.5 miles (3 miles round trip)
Tupper Lake, Franklin County
Goodman Mountain is a dynamic 3-mile round trip hike located in southern Franklin County, just south of Tupper Lake. The trail is entirely on public Forest Preserve lands, which are part of the Horseshoe Lake Wild Forest. The Goodman Mountain Trail parking area and trailhead are off of Route 30, just south of the intersection with State Route 421 that leads into the Bog River and Low’s Lake. The hike offers an easy stroll for just under 1 mile along a rare paved trail in the Forest Preserve on the old road that once joined Long Lake and Tupper Lake, before connecting to a foot trail for the final half-mile to reach the summit.
The hike starts by crossing a newly built bridge across a small stream just off the parking lot, a welcome spot at the end of the hike to catch a breath or get a quick rinse. The first mile of the hike is on the old road that once joined Long Lake and Tupper Lake and is still relatively well maintained and open, making for an accessible, relatively flat, initial part of the hike. After a little under a mile, the path turns left sharply up the first stone staircase onto a foot trail. Follow the red trail markers at this point.
The trail soon begins its first real ascent, navigating between a cluster of large boulders. Hikers will gently wind through a peaceful stretch of northern hardwood forest for about a quarter of a mile before rising again after the second stone staircase. Look out for large sugar maples that occasionally part the tree canopy, illuminating the forest floor and offering a welcome bit of variation to the green mass above.
Midway through the final ascent after the second staircase, the mountain begins to slope down on the downslope side of the trail, offering a glimpse of the view awaiting at the top, while mossy cliffs run along the upslope side of the trail. After passing between two prominent twin hemlock trees, large boulders around the path offer interesting spots for a rest (or some bouldering) after the trail’s steepest climb.
Following a short final climb, sunlight begins to stream through the trees ahead as the trail emerges onto the summit. The view is vast for such a short hike, offering an overlook onto surrounding valleys and mountains, including nearby Coney Mountain, a perfect companion for a few solid hours of hiking. Goodman’s summit provides plenty of exposed rock for sitting, but on busy days hikers can take advantage of the small trails that trickle down the mountain’s face that lead to more secluded areas.
Goodman Mountain was renamed in 2002 to honor the memory of Andrew Goodman. In the summer of 1964, Goodman, a summer resident of Tupper Lake, traveled to Mississippi to help register Black voters. Goodman and two other civil rights workers, including James Chaney, a Black Mississippi native, and Michael Schwerner of New York City, were murdered by the Ku Klux Klan and the Neshoba County Sheriff’s Department. Chaney alone was brutally beaten and shot multiple times. Goodman’s remembrance on the mountain urges hiker’s to reflect on the history of racism in the outdoors, the historical links between police forces and racism, and the countless Black activists and peoples whose memories do not have the privilege of living on publicly.
The return trip for the hike out is the same as the hike in. This is an easy and rewarding hike, accessible for anyone who is comfortable and able to walk the full 3 miles round trip.
Click here to download a map and trail directions for Goodman Mountain
Help Protect the Forest Preserve and Be Prepared When You Hike: Please follow “carry in, carry out” rules for all trash and follow Leave No Trace principles when hiking in the public Forest Preserve and other wild areas. The 7 Leave No Trace principles are: 1) Plan ahead and prepare ; 2) Stay on hiking trails and camp at designated areas; 3) Dispose of human waste and trash properly; 4) Leave what you find; 5) Minimize campfires; 6) Respect wildlife; 7) Respect other hikers.
Educated hikers do not damage the environment. Prepared hikers do not need search and rescue unless injured.
Winter Use: Goodman Mountain is used for snowshoeing in the winter.