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Catskills Frick Pond Loop Via Quick Lake, Big Rock and Loggers Loop Trails
Directions to trailhead
The Quick Lake/Flynn Trail Trailhead is located near the end of Beech Mountain Road. To reach the trailhead, follow Debruce Road east from Livingston Manor (Exit 96 on Route 17) for 5.8 miles to the intersection with Mongaup Road. Turn left onto Mongaup Road and follow it for about 2.7 miles to its intersection with Beech Mountain Road. Bear to the left onto Beech Mountain Road, which quickly becomes a dirt road. Follow Beech Mountain Road for about a third of a mile; the trailhead parking area will be located on your left just after the road climbs up a hill. The road ends just above this point at a private residence.
This is one of our Catskills Program Coordinator's favorite hikes in the Catskills because it's such a pleasant and accessible walk for everyone, especially during the summer when the majority of the wet areas dry up. With work planned by the Willowemoc Trail Crew (summer 2014), this hike will only get better (and drier).
From the northwestern corner of the parking lot, the red-blazed Quick Lake Trail descends on several log steps and then continues on a mostly level route through the open hardwood forest. In about a tenth of a mile (0.10 mile), the trail intersects with an old road that once provided access to Frick Pond. There is a DEC sign-in booth at this intersection; make sure to sign in.
From this point, the trail turns left and follows the road. It may be wet in several places, especially during the spring, but is generally level with a few dips and climbs past streams and drainages. At just under the half -mile (0.45 mile) point, the Quick Lake Trail intersects with the yellow-blazed Loggers Loop Trail. The intersection is located within an old field that can become overgrown and be poorly signed. Be sure to stay to the left at the intersection, staying on the red Quick Lake Trail.
The Quick Lake Trail passes through another muddy area just past the trail junction and then begins descending to the shoreline and outlet of Frick Pond at about 0.55 miles from the trailhead (and about a tenth of a mile from the intersection with the Loggers Loop Trail). The bridge and the small open field adjacent to it make for a great stop to enjoy the view of Frick Pond and watch the wildlife that lives there.
The dam on Frick Pond was removed (or destroyed) many years ago, so the actual water body is quite small during most of the year, but high springtime water levels sustain an open meadow that provides habitat for a number of wildlife species, including birds.
After crossing the outlet of Frick Pond on a bridge, the trail generally follows the shoreline of Frick Pond, but back from the edge. The trail has a few minor wet areas and is generally level as it heads toward the intersection with the Big Rock Trail. At this trail junction, the Quick Lake Trail turns westward, eventually reaching Quick Lake and the Quick Lake Lean-to. You should stay right and follow the yellow-blazed Big Rock Trail as it continues to follow the shoreline of Frick Pond.
Near the northwestern corner of the pond, the trail enters a thick hemlock grove, where you will step up onto a boardwalk that will carry you over an extensive wet area. The only caution here is that if you are hiking in wet weather, the boardwalk can be quite slippery and you should take your time.
The boardwalk will take you to the two major inlets of Frick Pond, crossing both on small bridges in an semi-open meadow area. From the stream crossings, continue on the Big Rock Trail as it heads north, away from Frick Pond, on the remnants of an old woods road.
At 1.2 miles from the trailhead, the trail reaches Times Square, a four-way junction of two yellow trails. Turn sharply right onto the Loggers Loop Trail that heads south on an old woods road. (To your left the Loggers Loop Trail continues to the northwest, eventually reaching the Iron Wheel Junction with the Quick Lake Trail. Straight ahead, the Big Rock Trail, also yellow, climbs steadily to its intersection with the Flynn Trail.)
From Times Square, the Loggers Loop trail descends slightly, crossing a small stream on a washed-out culvert before gently ascending to the height of land after about 0.2 mile. Once the height of land is reached, the trail is generally level for another 0.2 mile before descending slightly. As views of Frick Pond begin to open up and just before the trail's intersection with the Quick Lake Trail, there is a privy to your right on a short side trail.
Loggers Loop ends at its intersection with the Quick Lake Trail. This is the first trail junction you reached when starting your hike. Turn left onto the red marked Quick Lake Trail, heading eastward 0.45 mile back to the trailhead.
There are no difficult sections along this hike and no steep climbs or descents. The most difficult aspects of the hike are the numerous wet areas, especially near Times Square on both the Big Rock and the Loggers Loop Trails. If you don't mind getting your boots muddy though, this is not a problem.
Trail maintenance is picking up in the area, thanks to the Trail Conference's Willowemoc Trail Crew. This trip is a great hike for families with children looking to spend a few hours in the woods. It's close to the Mongaup Pond State Campground and the Town of Livingston Manor is less than 8 miles away.
In Livingston Manor there are lodging and dining options, along with Morgan Outdoors, a great outdoor clothing, shoes and gear store that's an excellent place to get ready for your adventures. Discounts are offered to those who show a valid Trail Conference membership card. The owner of the store is a great resource to ask for information on trails, hikes, and how to get involved with stewardship activities in the area.