Posted on October 9, 2017 and last updated on September 20, 2018

Black Mountain, Sumner


  • Preserve Size: NA
  • Trail Mileage: 1.4 miles to first ledge
  • Pets: yes
  • Difficulty: challenging
  • Sights: tree-fronted views from 2,133-foot ridge, elevation gain 1,200 ft.

The way up this mountain isn’t easy; the area has been clear cut and it can be at times tricky to find the trail. Mostly, though, there are enough cairns, flags, and occasional spray-painted arrows on rocks to find your way. Watch for these signs carefully because otherwise there is no discernible footpath for much of the way through the harvested area. Instead, you follow grassy tracks or walk up skidder roads. I recommend bringing a GPS. 

At roughly .8 mile, you finally enter the woods and walk along a little footpath, which rather steeply climbs for a little more than .25 mile to the start of the mountain ridge. At this point you’ll see a fairly large cairn. The views, which are fine but not spectacular, are the best here, as far as I could tell. The trail continues another couple hundred yards to another big cairn on ledges. If you have a GPS, you’ll see the path does not continue to the true summit of the mountain. I tried to bushwhack a bit to reach it and a little pond, but it was tough going.

Directions: From Route 219 turn onto Greenwoods Road. Follow that for 1.35 miles until you reach the junction with Labrador Pond Road on your right. Take a sharp left here (you’ll still be on Greenwoods Road), and look for Black Mountain Road on your left, about .2 mile farther along. Drive roughly 2.4 miles on Black Mountain Road to the trailhead, which is past a house and up a steep hill. The trail is to your right, blocked with small boulders. The road can be pretty crummy; some people park .2 miles or so lower down and walk up to the start of the path.


Let me know if you have any trail updates or corrections!