We all know the major attractions of the Tri-Lakes area; all the Olympic facilities, High Falls Gorge, The Wild Center, etc., but do we ever really know what is right in our backyard. I thought I was well educated with all the local attractions, but each day I learn about a new one. Well, this past Wednesday was no exception. I was asked to go on a scenic flight of the high peaks region. I had known that Lake Placid had an airport, but had no idea they do scenic flights for the public. The airport is on Route 73 going out of Lake Placid on the left, before the Horse Show Grounds. More than likely you have driven right past it many times to go to the Ski Jumps. And it is a hidden gem! They offer flights daily from 9am to 5pm (weather permitting), no reservations needed. It is worth the trip! You can choose between three different routes; The High Peak Region, Olympic Venues, or 'The Lakes', each with their own focus.
When you arrive, you are escorted to your plane by your pilot. They will help you into the plane and give you a breakdown of what to expect. The plane we took only held four people (a little scary to say the least), but fit us [four] just fine. Each person gets a pair of noise cancelling headphones with a headset so we all can communicate while the motor is running. Since it does get pretty loud, those headphones were a blessing and worked great. After everyone is buckled and all ready to go, your pilot will start your journey.
PS: Riding in one of these planes was easier than riding a commercial plane for me, and I'm a 'baby' as some of friends would say. The pilot was wonderful and explained exactly what to expect and how he has gotten every person who went up, down safely since he started - 42 years ago! So you really have nothing to worry about.
We started our tour with a glimpse of downtown Lake Placid, Lake Placid (the lake) and Mirror Lake. The pilot was so knowledgeable and gave a complete commentary the entire flight that was incredibly detailed.
Cascade Lakes are beautiful from the ground, but they are amazing from the air!
Here are a couple pictures of extra pictures to show you what you can see...
Many mountains had large damaging mud slides due to the storm 'Irene' in 2012 as you can see below.
The mountains look so close, until you see the hikers at the peaks and realize how far away you truly are. And the day we went was so beautiful and clear, it's no wonder why we saw dozens and dozens of hikers at the tops of most of these mountains.
And then right before you land you get this awesome shot of the Ski Jumps!
These are true sights to see that you can only get from a scenic flight. When planning a trip to Saranac Lake/Lake Placid, make sure to stop into Adirondack Flying Service to get your first hand experience in the sky. It is like no other!