Catskill Forest Preserve

Big Indian Wilderness: Burnham Hollow


Hikers can access the Big Indian Wilderness from Burnham Hollow which provides an easterly approach to Fir and Eagle mountains.


Drive down to the end of Burnham Hollow Road, through the stone arch and make a right into the NYSDEC parking area which can accomodate about a half dozen cars.

Google Maps GPS coordinates: 42.05489, -74.46671

Access to Fir Mountain

Walk south from the NYSDEC parking area on the road which crosses a bridge over the Elk Bushkill. Enter the woods just beyond the bridge where you'll see trees marked with yellow paint blazes indicating state land.

For the first 550 feet you'll be hiking south in a 10 foot wide strip of state owned land up a steep slope.

After navigating through this narrow strip, the state land widens and you'll continue to hike in a south westerly direction up a ridge to Fir Mountain.

Access to Eagle Mountain

Walk north from the east end of the DEC parking area along a stone wall to your right.

After 500 feet or so, the state land widens and you'll continue to hike in a westerly direction up a ridge to Eagle Mountain.

Further Information

Information collected from various public sources about state owned land and easements in this area is summarized below. Feel free to consult these sources which are cited below and alert us if you have any further information.

The NYSDEC Burnham Hollow parking area appears on the DECinfo Locator. (Make sure to enable Parking under DEC Information Layers: Outdoor Activity: Land-related Activities.) It also appears on the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference maps. However, it is not listed on the Big Indian Wilderness page on the NYSDEC website.

New York State acquired a 956 acre parcel in 1986 for $346,500 which surrounds the Big Indian Mountain Association which is privately owned. The parcel is part of the State Forest Preserve and connects with various other state owned land forming a contiguous portion of the Big Indian Widerness. The NYSDEC parking area is within this parcel. The state parcel, SBL 23-1-1, is highlighted below.

The deed for the State owned parcel includes two easements. One easement provides vehicular and pedestrian access to the NYSDEC parking area. The second easement provides pedestrian access from the NYSDEC parking area to the portion of the state land parcel to the south which provides a route to Fir Mountain. The text related to these easements, excerpted from Ulster County Deed Book 1675 page 165 is shown below.