According to AllTrails, the Overlook Trail at Moreau Lake is “an easy hike appropriate for young children or older parents to get them out into the woods”. This is NOT TRUE. This hike is surprisingly steep for a good portion of the hike, especially near the summit.
Directions to Moreau Lake State Park
Moreau Lake State Park is located on Old Saratoga Road off of Route 87.
- 45 mins north of Schenectady, NY
- 17 mins south of Lake George
It’s a popular destination for summer camps and families. The lake is surrounded by a beach with pavilions and several picnic tables. The park surrounding the lake is a lush hardwood forest.
Costs & Fees
- Park entry: $8 per vehicle
You can also camp here in a tent or cottage, which each has their own rates. You can view rates for these as well as other rental equipment such as kayaks here.
Directions to The Overlook Trailhead
Once you pass the guard’s station at the entrance to the park, follow the road past the lake to the parking lot and park all the way at the end of the last lot. There should be a series of picnic tables here.
There are several trails in Moreay Lake state park. The overlook trail is marked by blue paint or disc markers nailed into the trees. The trailhead is in the Northwest corner of the parking lot (if you are facing the lake, it’s the corner to the back right).
Recommended Hiking Gear
What To Expect From The Trail
- Distance: 3 miles round trip
- Elevation at Trailhead: 225ft
- Elevation Gain: 975ft
- Difficulty: Moderate
- Crowd Factor: Light-Moderate
- Time: 2-2.5 hours round trip
The path starts very easily with a slight elevation gain as you walk through the hardwood forest, mostly compromised of pine trees. The trail is wide, well packed, and mostly trafficked by families or high school/summer camp kids.
There are a few areas where the Overlook Trail intersects with other trails, however it’s very easy to see the blue markers and make sure you continue on the right trail.
The trail quickly starts to increase in elevation shortly after the three way intersection with the red and white trails. The trail becomes steeper with lots of exposed roots that can be used as “stairs”. The last 100 feet or so before you reach the summit becomes even more steep with lots of exposed rocks. It’s difficult and extremely steep without much to grad onto.
As this is an out and back trail, take caution when climbing back down these sections as it’s very easy to slip. This is why I consider this trail to be “moderate/hard”.
The overlook is a clearing in the tree tops and looks over Moreau Lake. It’s a great view of the surrounding woods and you can see for miles. Other reviews of this trail say that there is also another view of the Hudson River, however I didn’t see this on our hike.
Pro Tip: Make sure you don’t take the white trail to get back. While you may want some different scenery, this trail will add an extra 2.5hrs onto your hike.