Most Popular Winter Trailhead
Times Square Herd Path or Express Route from Upper Works
Round Trip Distance
12.6 miles via Times Square, 9.0 miles via the Express Route
Average Round-trip Time
8 to 10 Hours, 10 to 12 with Panther and Couchy
Winter Obstacles to be Aware Of
The Express Route is very steep and in some locations can become iced over.
From Panther Mountain via Times Square
From Times Square locate the herd path behind the boulder and drop down steeply then continuously to the col (please see the page on Panther Mountain for detail on getting to Times Square). The climb up Santanoni from here is steady and only on a couple occasion steep. As you near the top ridge a short section of open rock can be a bit icy, but trees can aid you in safe passage. Just before the summit you may notice the Express Route coming in on the left. The ridge has outstanding views; the summit area is a bit more obstructed but still a very nice spot.
Via the Express Route
The Express Route is marked by a rock cairn at the head of the herd path (please see the page for Panther on the access trail to the express route). From the start of the herd path you will quickly come to a crossing of Santanoni Brook before entering a slightly confusing area near a beaver swamp. If not broken out try to keep the wetland to your right as close as possible and the herd path will come back to you on the other side. From here you will start a very steep and arduous climb up the shoulder of Santanoni Peak. Take your time for good footing. On the ascent there is a split in the trail and you should go right to avoid climbing steep cliffs, especially under winter conditions, and especially on the descent. You will hit the ridge about 0.1 miles from the summit.
Microspikes would be a definite addition to the pack for icy terrain
Please refer to our basic list of winter gear recommendations for day trips, remember this list is only a recommendation, and you should take into consideration your experience, group size, length of trip, conditions, weather forecast, and any unforeseen incidences.