Frum Outdoorsman: Rare but Possible

The wanderings and adventures of an orthodox Jew

I get to be in the Adirondacks all week for work!!!

Posted by Frum Hiker on July 18, 2007

So this week my job has taken me to Saranac Lake where I am staying at the old and cozy Hotel Saranac. The old toilets, bathtubs and beautiful furnishings in the ballroom are amazing. It is also located in downtown Saranac Lake where I have found great places to ride my bike and just plain old walk around.

On the way up on Sunday I stopped at the high peaks trail head in Tahauwus- which is by far my favorite trailhead due to its lack of cars and back door approach to Mt. Marcy- rather then the traditional ADK LOJ to Marcy Dam- this approach is just 10 miles and takes you through the Flowed Lands/Lake Colden area.

I hiked into the flowed lands and out again and it was awesome. The weather, save for a few bugs was pristine- clear and bright with a temperature of 75 degrees. I was jealous of all the folks going in on multi day trips- and I had to be at work in the morning. I hiked 5 miles to the flowed lands- it is this flat plain of water, flowing green grass and cliffs jutting out. In the distance large mountains can be seen. I think Mt. Colden looms with its bare top. The sight was magnificent and I took many pictures. I chilled there for a half hour just taking it in and enjoying the solitude and lack of any man made noise.

Then yesterday- I took a nice 18 mile bike ride up route 374 near Chazy Lake- beautiful country of swamps, lakes – pine and birch. My legs wanted more- but I had to be in Plattsburg. After work in Plattsburg I rode around the SUNY campus- which features some great ledges- stair gaps and many planters of multiple sizes. Proof of its popularity could be seen from all the skate wax rubbed everywhere.

Today after working up near Ogdensburg- I drove all the way back to Tupper Lake and visited the historic Beth Joseph synagogue that is right on route 3 in the main part of town- overlooking the lake. I will post in the future about my visit- but lets just say that the shull is very nice and I spoke to a 98 year old women named Muriel Ginsburg for about an hour. I was real happy to see the shull where it was and promised I would go into depth about my visit when I had a chance.

Then I drove towards my hotel in Saranac and decided that I had better sample some of the paddling around here. I launched in the Raquette River which is probably the most famous place to paddle in New York State. It is flat and an ease to paddle. It features multiple campsites on the banks and I saw one lean to. The noise of the surrounding area faded within a few strokes and I was left to the dip of the oar and my thoughts- interrupted every few minutes by a bird or a jumping fish. I was surrounded on all sides by forest and the river flowed peacefully along with me in its grasp. I paddled for a few hours and turned around. I explored swamps and marshland and took a nap on a beach. All I have to say is that it is amazing and now I want to do a full fledged multi day paddling trip up here.

I still have 3 days left…

5 Responses to “I get to be in the Adirondacks all week for work!!!”

  1. TourPro said

    Wow! You sure get around. Sounds like you are having an excellent time – it’s cool when your work brings you to fun places. We have some great riding around here, eh?


  2. Frum Hiker said

    You know the one problem with the Adirondacks is that the mountain biking is non-existent. Yes you have Van Hove, Whireface and Garnet Hill- but there is no do it yourself good trails that are legal- like down in the Catskills and Hudson valley. Really bugs me that in 6 million acres they couldn’t set have some multi use single track.

  3. TourPro said

    ATB, now you talking my language.

    I totally agree. So much so that I’ve semi-retired my mountain-bike. My opinion is that the geography and geology don’t suit natural single-track formation. Too many rocks and roots. Even semi-maintained roads can become unrideable pretty quick. I’ve never ridden at VanHo.

    There’s a few miles of nice track behind the Field House in Plattsburgh – locally known as “the Blue Trail”. Also, Point au Roche State Park has another handful of miles.

    New York State does have some nice pavement and plentiful back roads, especially around the North Country. Road-bike is definitely King. My only recommendation is a more hardcore wheelset and tires. Traditional roadie gear – light and thin – will get wasted quick. I’m riding 700×32’s and never flat.

    Shoot me a note if you want some trail beta.

  4. DS said

    Have you canoed the St Regis area, 20 minutes from Saranac Lake?

    It’s fabulous.

    You can rent right in Saranac Lake if you wish and then put in at Floodwood Pond, Lake Clear, or Fish Creek. There are liveries there as well.

    Get a map and, if you’re going solo, a kevlar canoe if possible.

    Feel free to EMAIL me.

  5. Frum Hiker said

    I was going to today- but instead I ride a 40 mile loop on my bike- so many choices so hard to choose. Depending on the weather tomorrow I may kayak- it is currently sitting on the roof of my car btw.

    Thanks for the tip.

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