Stories
Traveler & visitor information and tips
The Best Way to Cool OffOur warm weather of late has found me chatting with friends and family further south who are complaining of the hot and muggy conditions where they live. To be sure it has been warm here and very hot elsewhere – but Wren and I have a solution that eludes many others thanks to where we live. After all, the region is dotted with seemingly countless numbers of lakes and we... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Summer, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Dog Friendly
Martha Reben was one tough lady. She came to the Adirondacks at the age of twenty-one, to cure in the famous sanitarium in Saranac Lake. But after three-and-a-half years, it looked like she was losing. Her condition was described as "severely debilitated" and she was facing a procedure of last resort where ribs were removed to collapse a lung.At this same time, 1931, Adirondack Guide and boat... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Historic Downtown, Heritage, camping
One of the fun, and free, options in Saranac Lake is the monthly lecture series held by Saranac Village at Will Rogers. They open their cozy Great Room for talks on all kinds of subjects. So when they announced the lecture for August was to be "Goat Packing, our passport to the back country," I could not resist.As it turned out, this lecture and slideshow told the story of how challenges... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Gear, Fall, Equipment, camping
My interest for these three mountains was conceived one winter’s day when I was reading a book about Bob Marshall. Well, come to find out his family had a place on the Saranacs and one of his frequent stomping grounds was Boot Bay Mountain. So, I figured why not head out and grab the other two along the way: Spruce Ridge and Shingle Bay Mountain.Finding the pathI knew where I wanted to get... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:Outdoor Recreation, Hiking
Text by Guest Blogger: Hannah BabcockPhotos provided by ROOSTer Kim Andresen, also an avid fan of this secret beach AND ice cream. Many thanks to our fun-loving & photogenic friends Clayton & Abby Johnson and family.What to do... what to do?If you find yourself sitting outside on a beautiful day in Lake Placid and trying to think of something to do to take full advantage of... [Read More]
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Author:Guest Blogger
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Dog Friendly
One of the best ways to enjoy our Saranac Lake galleries is to attend an art opening. A gallery opening might sound intimidating, but don’t worry… our gallery openings are just like the Adirondacks:  easygoing, welcoming, and fun! They generally happen on Friday evenings, near the beginning of the month. I've put together four "insider" tips that will... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Arts, Events, Historic Downtown
A Morning Start on a Hot DayWith another hot day coming, Wren and I headed out for a morning paddle on Jones Pond before the sun began to bake the landscape. The day was cool, but rapidly warming as I prepared for our outing, listening to a singing Blue-headed Vireo and White-throated Sparrow. As I fiddled with my gear, I chatted with a couple from Georgia who were camping in one of the campsites... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Summer, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Dog Friendly, Birding
Great Weather for Paddling! With so much warm, sunny weather of late, I have been itching to get out paddling with Wren. As a result, I’ve been driving around with my canoe on my car to make such adventures quicker to organize since the loading process can sometimes delay things. So with my boat pre-loaded, Wren and I were out fairly early the other day to check out the paddling and birding... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Birding, Dog Friendly, Natural History, Outdoor Recreation, Paddling, Spring, Summer, Wildlife
Did you know Saranac Lake has the largest collection of Robert Louis Stevenson memorabilia in the world? Our village in the Adirondacks has a pivotal place in the saga of this famous author's life. Then Stevenson Cottage, where he restored his health, became the home of his legacy.He was one of the most successful writers of the 19th century. Stories like "Treasure Island," "Kidnapped," and "The... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Summer, Heritage, Family fun, Exhibits, Cultural, Arts
A Great Place for an Evening PaddleI made sure to take my nieces and nephew paddling the other week when they came to visit – it's an integral part of an Adirondack adventure, after all. Lake Colby is a great spot for an easy outing, so we all loaded into my large boat and set off. My niece Emily paddled in the bow, I was in the stern, and Rebecca and Tyler sat on Crazy Creek chairs in the middle... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Summer, Spring, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Family fun, Dog Friendly
Acting Cool: Practice Makes PerfectWhen I think of art in the Saranac Lake Region, a ton of cool galleries, shops, and events come to mind. But, of course, I have a history of working in the performing arts, so my first love - theatre - is at front and center for this blog. And, when I think of acting in the Adirondacks, Pendragon Theatre is the place to be.In case you haven’t been (WHY... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Andresen
Categories:Theatre, Summer, Family fun, Exhibits, Arts
A Simple Suggestion Becomes a Vacation Plan In the depths of the winter (ok, it was actually spring according to the calendar), when we here in Lake Placid were still skiing on perfect snow but dreaming about green leaves and blue water, my husband made an off-handed suggestion: “Why don’t we reserve a campsite on Lower Saranac Lake for a week in June?" Anxious for a mental escape from... [Read More]
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Author:Amy Quinn
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, camping
July is a wonderful time to visit the Saranac Lake Region. We have so many great events at this time of year. From traditional holiday celebrations and history tours all the way to some great modern talents in music and art, we have enjoyable options for every member of the family.Our Glorious FourthWe love a small town Independence Day. Join us!We start our celebrations with the 4th of... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Music, Historic Downtown, Heritage, Family fun, Events, Arts
Saranac Lake has wonderful lodging and wellness venues. This year was the first time they were combined in a delightful weekend event. Which created a vortex of healing Adirondack vibrations!The Holistic Health Retreat & Conference was held on the weekend of May 16th & 17th, but I arrived Friday night to relax and enjoy the fine dining at the hosting property, the Lake Clear Lodge... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Spring, Events, Cultural
A High Diversity Time of YearOne of the best things about spring and early summer in the Adirondacks is the diversity of birds that can be found in our area during a simple walk. My walks are almost always taken with Wren who wants nothing more than to run, play, and swim all the time. More than that, her high energy level requires that I take her out regularly and I am compelled to go out even... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Hiking, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Birding
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Saranac Lake has a wonderful range of Adirondack campgrounds to choose from. Whether it's a full service RV hook-up or a tent in the wildest of the wilderness, we have a full range of very cool spots.Camping is a great way to really feel the wild places around us. Maybe it's that first cup of "cowboy coffee" as we listen to the loon cry over the lake. Maybe it's sitting around the campfire,... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Spring, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Fishing, Family fun, Fall, Dog Friendly, Cycling, camping
The State Of New York“Blah blah blah?”“Blah blah.”It was a slow day at work. I had been wiping down the same 10 square feet of counter space for the last two hours, half listening to my co-workers discussing plans for the weekend. It was not until I heard “blah blah Adirondack-” that I started paying attention. I whipped around like a dog who has just heard the word “walk,” every atom now attuned... [Read More]
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Author:ADK Grasshopper
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Music, Events
An In-depth Adirondacks Cycling ExperienceGuest Blogger: Jim Moore, Event Director • Cycle AdirondacksThis August, Saranac Lake will host a new and unique event – Cycle Adirondacks, the first fully supported road-cycling tour of the Adirondack Park. The event will kick off with a celebration (which is open to the public) on Saturday, August 22, and finish a week later with a public “Finish Line... [Read More]
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Author:Guest Blogger
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Fall, Cycling
Golf and the Adirondacks have had a long and passionate relationship. By the turn of the 19th century, luxury resorts and Great Camps were springing up all over the Adirondack Park. Golf courses soon followed, and Saranac Lake has just the right kind of terrain.Golf in the United States can be traced back to 1828, when Charles B. Macdonald returned from college in Scotland with a set of... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Heritage, Golf, Fall
My first stop at any waterpark has always been a ride of the river persuasion - be it lazy or rapid. There is something so thrilling about surrendering myself to the course of the river with the sun on my face. The amazon/rapids sort of rides are exhilarating, putting me in the mind frame of Disney's Pocahontas singing "just around the river bend," while the lazy rivers make me want to melt in... [Read More]
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Author:ADK Grasshopper
Categories:Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun
It’s a beautiful summer afternoon, and you want to spend the evening outside socializing and seeing some great music while you’re at it. You’re in luck! Saranac Lake has some great options for summer music!The Party on the Patio series at the Waterhole is the cornerstone of Saranac Lake’s summer music offerings. Each Thursday, the Waterhole has free music from 6 to 10 p.m. on their outdoor patio... [Read More]
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Author:Jess Collier
Categories:Summer, Spring, Music, Historic Downtown, Heritage, Family fun, Events, Dog Friendly, Cultural, Beer, Arts
From Snow to Blooms!Each year, after a long Adirondack winter, it seems as if we finally say goodbye to snow and miraculously, there are suddenly wildflowers blooming everywhere! Coltsfoot, often mistaken for Dandelions, is one of the earliest spring wildflowers to bloom in the Adirondacks.Bluets is another early wildflower that grows in large clusters.On hikes, I begin to observe the psychedelic... [Read More]
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Author:Joan Collins
Categories:Wildflowers, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Birding
Saranac Lake is a great place to stretch that vacation dollar. Our corner of the Adirondacks has many ways to help anyone have lots of fun, either for free or as a darned good bargain.Remember, the Adirondack Park has no admission fee!Pitch YOUR OWNOur vast wilderness offers one way of combining luxurious grandeur and inexpensive accommodation. Back-country camping requires a setting at... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Music, Historic Downtown, Hiking, Family fun, Events, Dog Friendly, Cycling, camping, Arts
The 6ers are what we call the six highly climbable mountains that ring the village of Saranac Lake. The Adirondacks are known for its mountain hiking, and it's human nature to create "sets" for achievement purposes. There's the 46 High Peaks that are over 4,000 feet in height. Thus inspired, we have created what has turned out to be a very popular way for people to enjoy our kinder, gentler peaks... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Trail Running, Summer, Spring, Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Fall
First Hike of the SpringWith our snow melted and ski season over, it was time for Wren and I to take our inaugural hike of the season. We’ve been walking at places like the Bloomingdale Bog Trail and the railroad tracks behind Lake Colby, but we hadn’t done a proper hike yet this spring. And Baker Mountain is a great place to break in the hiking season.The sun and clouds had staged a skirmish... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Family fun, Dog Friendly
The area around Saranac Lake is known as the Lake Country of the Adirondacks. Since the whole Park is known for its lakes, what makes us so very special?I'm happy to tell you. There are five good reasons we proudly bear that title. 1. PaddlingWe are a Paddler's Paradise because of our terrain. That must have been some giant glacier. Parts of the Adirondacks were shaped by deep gouges that... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wildlife, Wellness, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Fishing, Family fun, Dog Friendly
Seasons mean so much here in the Adirondacks. It is here, like no other place I’ve lived before, that they delineate themselves as wildly separate and distinct experiences. Each is filled with unique delights that can be obtained at no other time.Saranac Lake is a place which embraces all of them. We have festivals for each season, featuring the way each one is celebrated in the Adirondacks. I’m... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Fall
Ringing Telephones in My YardI’ve been waking each morning of late to the jingling song of Dark-eyed Juncos which have been filling my yard and gorging on bird seed. I kept a few juncos around through much of the winter, but as spring has pushed in from the south they have followed in numbers. Then a new song was added to their ringing telephone chorus early last week. A Fox Sparrow – a migrant... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Birding
Come to the Adirondacks. Where every day is Earth Day!Saranac Lake has some delightful lodging choices in the midst of all our nature. Our properties have often been in the family for generations, were built to fit into unique geographic features, and are all about participating in our Great Outdoors -- from anywhere. easy being GreenAudubon rarely bestows their highest Eco Lodging... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Dog Friendly, Conservation
Spring in the Adirondacks is a wild, overlooked, season. Saranac Lake has many attractions which shine in this special gap between winter and summer. It might not be the first place a person thinks of when the idea of spring break occurs to them, but it can be the last... because there are many good reasons to fit a spring trip to the Adirondacks into our schedule.It can be worth dodging some... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wildflowers, Spring, Hiking, Fishing, Events, Dog Friendly, Cycling, Birding
Mud season has arrived in the Adirondacks, which means 3 things: the sky is blue, the temps are mild, and for those of us who like to get outside, most of our winter activities have ended but the woods and waters aren't quite ready for summer fun. Now is a GREAT time to check out the local breweries and soak up some springtime rays along the way!This past Sunday, a few co-workers and I met up for... [Read More]
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Author:Glenn Pareira
Categories:winter, Summer, Spring, Fall, Cultural, Brewery, Beer
The Battle of the SeasonsThe past few weeks have seen the sun and winter battle for supremacy across our region. The sun’s rays on longer days have been beautifully warm, and yet our skiing base has stayed strong thanks to consistently chilly temps and cold nights. The result has been great cross-country skiing. While trail skiing comes and goes and has been icy and largely un-skiable of late,... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Spring, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Cross Country Skiing
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:Winter Carnival announces Summer Ice Palace Saranac Lake, Adirondacks - April 1, 2015 - The overwhelming popularity of Saranac Lake’s historic Winter Carnival has led to the creation of a summer version.“We realize this is a special challenge,” said Summer Carnival coordinator Ima Gladd-Colby. “But since we don’t get those brutal summer temperatures we decided to go for... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Heritage, Dog Friendly, Cultural
A Crew of Students from SyracuseThe birding club from SUNY-ESF in Syracuse came up this past weekend to look for Adirondack birds with me. I teach Field Ornithology courses for ESF at Cranberry Lake Bio Station during the summer and I’m always excited to see folks again. We met in Bloomingdale Bog where the group was having difficulty attracting the attention of any Gray Jays near the feeders. So... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Outdoor Recreation, Dog Friendly, Birding
The First Warm Days of SpringThe temperatures a few days last week broke into the 40s marking the beginning of spring skiing conditions across the region. The warm days and soft snow were a big change from the cold weather which had dominated our forecasts for much of the winter. It arrived right on time - after all, spring officially begins this coming weekend. Soft spring snow may be slow, but... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Spring, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Cross Country Skiing
This vacation, bring the dog. Because Saranac Lake is a dog-friendly place.Wilderness is even more enjoyable with four-legged companionship. If we have ever wondered what it would be like to really wear out our dog, one of our hikes or a paddling visit to an island will let us lean back and watch as they explore every fascinating scent... and we have are a lot of them. Our immediate... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Family fun, Events, Dog Friendly
Cold Weather BirdingWinter birding in Saranac Lake and the rest of the Adirondacks often revolves around finding resident boreal species – not a bad consolation for a cold walk. And so, Wren and I have been out throughout the winter to find species like Black-backed Woodpecker, Gray Jay, and Boreal Chickadee. The past month has also brought Bohemian Waxwings – a winter specialty – from the north... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Spring, Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Dog Friendly, Birding
If you've got Cabin Fever, the only prescription is... Saranac Lake!Cabin Fever was first officially called that back in 1838. It describes the psychological reaction to being cooped up indoors without interesting things to do. Irritability, restlessness, listlessness, and even paranoia can be symptoms of Cabin Fever. According to a paper in Psychological Science, February 2008, it can... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Wellness, Outdoor Recreation, Events, Dog Friendly, Cultural, Cross Country Skiing
Does Bigfoot live in the Adirondacks? Or is he just here for a vacation?While discussions about Bigfoot can seem rather recent in our United States history, Native Americans have talked about Sasquatch for hundreds of years. Often considered a West Coast phenomenon, sightings have also appeared all over the Adirondacks, from Saranac Lake in the north to a famous sighting in Whitehall, in the... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wildlife, Trail Running, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Hiking
Jackrabbit Trail Day 3 of 3:Lake Placid Pub & Brewery to Old Mountain RoadDay three of our three-day cross-country ski tour from Paul Smiths to Keene found us at the Jackrabbit trailhead behind the Lake Placid Pub & Brewery. We were looking forward to finishing off this trail with what we've heard are probably a few of the best sections. If you are just catching up with our adventure, be... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Cross Country Skiing
What is Adirondack style?It is a relaxed blending of the natural world with classic comfort elements. It was developed in the rugged wilderness, when a few innovative people arrived who were not intent on conquering and subduing the forces of nature. Instead, Adirondack style embraces and appreciates it. It is a way of seeking a partnership with nature.ArchitectureThis difference exhibited itself... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Natural History, Heritage, Cultural, Conservation
The Jackrabbit Ski Trail--Day 2Day one of our cross-country ski trip on the Jackrabbit Trail had us travel from Paul Smiths to McKenzie Pond Road. It was now a week later, and we were now looking at day two. For this, we decided to go with a much shorter day that would get us from McKenzie Pond Road to the village of Lake Placid. Doesn’t seem like much when you put it that way, but it will... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Cross Country Skiing
Using the Long Weekend to Go BirdingMy brother Dave recently took advantage of the long weekend and came up for some winter birding in our area. Saturday’s weather offered up light snow showers, but warmer temperatures than we’ve had of late, and we headed out with Wren to Bigelow Road to start our day. Despite the pleasant temperature, the road was quiet, although we did hear a Boreal Chickadee... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Hiking, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Birding
I grew up in Tupper Lake and have lived in Saranac Lake for a while now, so it’s probably quite strange that I had never been to Mt. Pisgah. But finally last week, I was assigned to write a blog post about the Saranac Lake ski slope, so I headed on over one afternoon after work.That’s one of the best things about Mt. Pisgah: It's open most weekday evenings, and there's great lighting so you can... [Read More]
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Author:Jess Collier
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Cross Country Skiing
The Jackrabbit Trail in 3 Helpings -- Day 1: from Paul Smiths to McKenzie Pond RoadThe Jackrabbit Trail is a prime piece of cross-country skiing real estate in the Adirondack Park. This trail is roughly 35 miles in length and runs from Paul Smiths to Keene. However, the sections from McKenzie Pond Road to Keene are used much more than the Paul Smiths to Saranac Lake sections. Either way, the... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:winter, Cross Country Skiing
aka: A beginner’s guide to making a fool of yourself while having a great time trying out a new-to-you activity. The day was sunny and blue, perfect for loading up the Jeep for the quick hour drive to a local, super family-friendly, ski-mountain. Since we always love a good deal and we've never skied Titus Mountain in nearby Malone, when the North Country Chamber offered one of their Ski Day... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Andresen
Categories:winter, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun
Traveling North For CarnivalMy niece Rebecca has been asking to come to Winter Carnival in Saranac Lake the past couple years, but has always had conflicts with school and other obligations. This year her regular requests finally won my family over and they came north last weekend to enjoy the beginning of Carnival for the first time. They explored the ice palace both during the day and at night... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Cross Country Skiing, Birding, winter
African-Americans have never made up large percentages in any census of the Adirondacks. But they have also been welcomed in proportions much greater than their numbers. Saranac Lake has long been supportive when it comes to the unique challenges faced by the people of this particular immigrant group.DEPOT ON THE UNDERGROUND RAILROADThe Champlain Valley to the East had been settled by a strong-... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Heritage, Cultural
A Bushwack snowshoe through the Debar Wild ForestBaldface Mountain weighing in at just less than 2900-feet in elevation has been itching at me for quite some time to visit, and this winter was my time. But to give you a little background in my fascination of this peak I will start with a small hike that led up to it.Debar PondIt was a warm day and I was exploring the region, doing small hikes... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking
Lots of Snow So We Can PlayAs usual, Wren and I have been cross-country skiing on a regular basis this winter as our snow, once a bit thin, has been piling up. One of our favorite places to go is the network of trails off of the Fish Pond Trail in Lake Clear. The trails there are designated cross-country skiing trails and they wind through beautiful deciduous and mixed forest and around the... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Cross Country Skiing

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