Every year during the fall I find myself in a consistent conversation – either with someone else or with myself in my own head.  “Is that peak?”  “Wow, that’s peak.”  “That’s not peak yet, but it’s close.”  After all, the peak of leaf season is something we all want to see.             I was driving across Route 3 from Watertown this past weekend and every bend in the road offered a new stage of the process and a new blend of colors seemingly topping the last.  But there was always that question, “Is it peak here?”  After all, finding the peak leaf season is an inexact science. ... continue reading
It’s a rare occasion when you can enjoy a view above the clouds, but even rarer would be that similar view from the summit of Street Mountain, but on this day it happened. I was to guide a couple from the Cooperstown area on their first “trailless” high Peaks. They had never done a High Peak that didn’t have a designated trail and through research they figured Street and Nye would be a good place to start, they were very much correct. The forecast was calling for clearing skies but chilly temperatures. As we started out we could see from the drive down Adirondack Loj Road that the... continue reading
It's officially Fall.  We've passed the Autumnal Equinox, it's getting colder (or at least it's suppoosed to be) and whether we like it our not, our precious daylight hours are getting shorter.  For many people, once daylight savings time hits in a few weeks, and we set our clocks back an hour it means an end to any hope of getting out for an after work ride.  It doesn't have to be this way.  Here in Lake Placid and down the road in  Wilmington, weekly after-work group rides continue to meet right up until the first snow falls.  Local riders embrace the darkeness with rediculously bright... continue reading
Just because the weather has turned a tad colder, the leaves are changing, and the days are shorter, it does not mean we have to stop riding our bikes in the Adirondacks.  With a few fall specific gear upgrades you can extend your riding season right up until the snow falls.  Luckily we have great bike shops in our area that stock everything you need to stay warm and dry.  When I stopped into Placid Planet Bicycles on Saranac Ave. Co-Owner Julie Voss steered me right toward the brightly colored, long-sleeve jerseys and jackets.  Julie says the insulated long sleeve jerseys will keep you warm... continue reading
Foliage this week in the High Peaks Region around Lake Placid has taken a dramatic leap from 25% last week to near peak today. By this weekend the foliage should be peaking at the higher elevations. As one travels down to lower elevations the percentage of change drops considerably. In the Lake Champlain Region the foliage has just started changing and should be around 10 - 20% by the weekend. In Lake Placid the colors at this time are predominantly oranges, yellows, golds and some reds. The hills are ablaze with color, so come see. You may want to make advance lodging reservations if you are... continue reading
Fall colors are bursting forth all over the Adirondacks this week. With the brilliant foliage come scores of visitors in search of the best views of Mother Nature's spectacle.  It's a yearly event that draws big crowds to see the hillsides aflame with color and also to attend the many annual events planned in concert with the fall foliage.  This coming weekend will see nearly 3,000 runners, in teams of up to 12, snaking through the Adirondacks.  From Saratoga Springs, along the Hudson River and Lake Champlain, past Whiteface Mountain and on to Lake Placid, it's a two day, non-stop relay race... continue reading
            Migration is one of the most amazing times of year on the bird calendar, and one of the coolest things to do during it is to listen to the migration pass overhead at night.  Many of our songbirds migrate at night and you can listen to them chip in mixed species flocks as they pass above you.  The chips likely help to keep the flocks together.             There are a variety of theories why so many songbirds migrate at night, any of which can be good reasons to do so.  For example, night air is cooler and long distance flying generates considerable body heat.  Night time climatic... continue reading
I decided to take an unusual approach to Cascade Mountain, one I am quite sure is not on someone’s tick list. I started at the parking lot in typical fashion but slightly veered off the trail for a while. Many who seek to bushwhack a peak look for the most obvious route or path, but my goal was to explore more than summit, a summit would be a bonus. I had previously bushwhacked in the area a bit and found the conditions to be favorable for this adventure. I had also bushwhacked to the summit from the Cascade and found the area also in nice condition. I would combine some of both previous... continue reading
            Just yesterday while sitting in my car, I watched a monarch butterfly fly through the parking lot of Price Chopper in Lake Placid.  I was ecstatic.  What was once a commonplace sighting has become anything but commonplace now. A few weeks ago, Dr. Chip Taylor of the University of Kansas and the Director of Monarch Watch came to The Wild Center in Tupper Lake to speak on the status and conservation of monarchs and in particular, the conservation of the eastern population of the species.  The talk was part of the museum’s efforts to promote understanding of monarch biology and... continue reading
After several postponed trips for the Lake Placid 8th Grade class we were finally on our way to do a team building trip on Owl’s Head. This is an annual event for High Peaks Mountain Guides and the Lake Placid Central School District, which always ends up being an interesting and fun day. Cooler weather in the morning delayed the start of the day but it was worth the wait, soon the sun warmed up the area and the temperatures were much friendlier. While a small group went kayaking, another tried stand-up paddle boarding, a third was rock climbing and a fourth tore up the trails mountain biking... continue reading


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