AZURE MOUNTAIN FACTS AT A GLANCE
- Located in the Town of Waverly, Franklin
County, New York
- Known locally by many as “Blue Mountain”
- Azure Mountain is part of the Debar Mountain
- The 535 acre Azure Mountain parcel was
purchased by the state in 1934 from Paul LeMieux.
- The Azure Mountain section of Forest Preserve
is surrounded by a privately owned hunting club. Most of the land
beyond is now open to the public as part of the Santa Clara Tract.
- Summit elevation: 2,518 feet
- Elevation change from trailhead: 944 feet
- Round trip hiking distance: 2 miles
- 1914 - Fire Observation Station constructed of
- 1918 - The present 35-foot Aerometer
galvanized steel fire tower was erected in the summer at a cost of
$530. (Tower height is measured to the floor of the cab.)
- 1978 - Tower was closed by the DEC and the
lower two sets of stair risers removed to prevent tower access. The
tower saw 60 years of “active” service.
- At least 14 Fire Observers and 9 Forest
Rangers have served the Azure Mountain area and its tower.
- 1995 – DEC removes the Observer’s cabin built
in 1936. Three Observers cabins were constructed through the
years: the first in 1914, the second (1919), and the third (1936) were
across the stream from where the old stone fireplace presently stands.
- 2001 - The Azure fire tower, and six other
Adirondack towers (Arab, Blue, Hadley, Kane, Poko-O-Moonshine and
Snowy), are accepted on the prestigious National Register of Historic
Places. (They are also on the NYS Historic Register.)
- At the time of this recognition, the Azure
tower was the only one of the seven that had not been ‘restored.’
- 2001 – The NYSDEC plans to remove the Azure
tower from the summit in August as it is deemed ‘unsafe.’ This
information, learned through a ‘chance’ phone conversation, led to a
strong plea from the Adirondack Mountain Club (ADK) and Adirondack
Architectural Heritage (AARCH) to ‘spare’ the tower. The DEC
agrees to ‘wait’ if a Friends group is quickly formed. The Azure
Mountain Friends (AMF), a group of North Country residents, is formed
in the fall.
- 2002 - Tower ‘mostly’ restored in July with
the hard work of DEC Forest Ranger personnel, DEC Operations
Department, six AmeriCorps workers and numerous AMF volunteers.
All restoration work completed by fall 2002.
- 2003 – Sept. 27 – A “Restoration Celebration”
– A Near Ending – A New Beginning ‘officially’ reopens the tower.
- 2011 – The Azure fire tower is now 93 years
- Azure Mountain is enjoyed by people of all
ages with a variety of outdoor interests in all seasons of the
year. Estimates are that 8,000 to 10,000 people visit Azure
- Hiking, back-country skiing, snowshoeing,
technical rock & ice climbing (on its steep southern cliffs),
hunting, bird watching, plant & animal identification are all
- The distant wilderness vista of the High Peaks
from the summit/tower cab is breathtaking. Countless mountains,
many of them high peaks, along with numerous water bodies, are seen
near and far. However, the wild forest and river that surrounds
Azure's cliffs is another story – it represents over a 100 years of
successful forest management that has protected and preserved
landscapes, habitats, and species.