Adirondack High Peaks

pattycuse

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Anyone know what it was like up there this weekend? I'm thinking about taking the kids to do Cascade and Porter next weekend, but only if it's not super crowded (I know that's a subjective term).
Hearing it was pretty busy, most major trailheads were full by 5:30am per Scott van Laer. Probably won't be much slower the next few weekends as we approach peak foliage. Sunday is your better bet than Saturdays, if that is an option. Great time of year to be up there, I just got back from Old Forge /Inlet last weekend but the only hiking I did was trying to find my golf ball...
 

Marty McFly

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Just checkin' in with this thread. Wanted to take advantage of the great weather and leaves before the bottom dropped out. But decided against going today because of the potential for crazy crowds, which ruins the enjoyment factor (for me anyway). Might consider tomorrow as its sunday and potential for lesser crowds. Speaking of leaves, any update from folks in that area? Are we looking at near peak, or a ways to go? I hear Tupper Lake area is at or near peak this weekend. Would certainly suck it up and go if this is THE weekend to go...
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Just checkin' in with this thread. Wanted to take advantage of the great weather and leaves before the bottom dropped out. But decided against going today because of the potential for crazy crowds, which ruins the enjoyment factor (for me anyway). Might consider tomorrow as its sunday and potential for lesser crowds. Speaking of leaves, any update from folks in that area? Are we looking at near peak, or a ways to go? I hear Tupper Lake area is at or near peak this weekend. Would certainly suck it up and go if this is THE weekend to go...

We were going to go up tomorrow morning and ultimately decided not to. Looked into getting a room in Lake Placid and the entire Village is booked. My guess is the trails will be busy. Lots of schools are closed Monday so there's a three-day weekend factor too.
 

OrangeDW

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Just checkin' in with this thread. Wanted to take advantage of the great weather and leaves before the bottom dropped out. But decided against going today because of the potential for crazy crowds, which ruins the enjoyment factor (for me anyway). Might consider tomorrow as its sunday and potential for lesser crowds. Speaking of leaves, any update from folks in that area? Are we looking at near peak, or a ways to go? I hear Tupper Lake area is at or near peak this weekend. Would certainly suck it up and go if this is THE weekend to go...

Leaves are further along than I expected in Old Forge area. Lots of colors - looks like it’s approaching peak to me. Very scenic. And yeah, this area is as busy as I’ve seen it all year. Packed with people. I imagine it’s the same in all these Adirondacks towns.
 

Marty McFly

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I never made it up last weekend, and think I may have missed on leaf peeping for the year (at least in the 'raks). Kudos for those that were able to experience it. Wanted to take my parents up for a nice weekend coming up, but with the recent rain, i'd imagine a ton of leaf drop, and colors being muted from where they were... If i'm off base please let me know.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Will Cascade and Porter have ice and/or snow on there summits next weekend? Thinking of booking a room next Saturday and doing the hike Sunday morning.
 

CuseFaninVT

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Will Cascade and Porter have ice and/or snow on there summits next weekend? Thinking of booking a room next Saturday and doing the hike Sunday morning.
Heights above 3500 ft got snow on Friday in Vermont. I’m guessing N.Y. is similar.
 

pattycuse

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Will Cascade and Porter have ice and/or snow on there summits next weekend? Thinking of booking a room next Saturday and doing the hike Sunday morning.
Saw some pictures this week of frost and ice above tree line. Suggest microspikes if you are going up.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Saw some pictures this week of frost and ice above tree line. Suggest microspikes if you are going up.

Appreciate the insight, but that's a no-go. What about a smaller peak like Mount Jo? We are going up with our kids. Any recommendations? It has to be in the Lake Placid area.
 

pattycuse

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Appreciate the insight, but that's a no-go. What about a smaller peak like Mount Jo? We are going up with our kids. Any recommendations? It has to be in the Lake Placid area.
Sorry, totally forgot to respond to this. Mt. Jo is probably your best bet, and actually the views are pretty good of Heart Lake, Algonquin etc. Non mountain hikes- look at the Jack Rabbit trail. It's a cross country ski trail that has really good views of the High Peaks. Another good option might be hiking into Indian Head from the Ausable Club. Unbelievable views of the lakes at the end. I don't remember the distance off hand but that's a good hike.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Sorry, totally forgot to respond to this. Mt. Jo is probably your best bet, and actually the views are pretty good of Heart Lake, Algonquin etc. Non mountain hikes- look at the Jack Rabbit trail. It's a cross country ski trail that has really good views of the High Peaks. Another good option might be hiking into Indian Head from the Ausable Club. Unbelievable views of the lakes at the end. I don't remember the distance off hand but that's a good hike.

Thanks. I have also been reading up on Baxter, Big Crow, and Owl's Head Lookout. Anything around or under 3-5 miles roundtrip would be fine for this weekend. And no snow and ice (need to be able to hoof it with trail shoes/boots). Views are key though to keeping my kids engaged. Just taking a walk in the woods doesn't cut it. Need that payoff (for me too, if I'm being honest).
 
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shandeezy7

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Thanks. I have also been reading up on Baxter, Big Crow, and Owl's Head Lookout. Anything around or under 3-5 miles roundtrip would be fine for this weekend. And no snow and ice (need to be able to hoof it with trail shoes/boots). Views are key though to keeping my kids engaged. Just taking a walk in the woods doesn't cut it. Need that payoff (for me too, if I'm being honest).

Owl's Head is a fun hike, and the fire tower at the top provides a great vantage point.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Ampersand mountain is a fairly easy climb with a great view. 16 miles from Lake Placid.
I've heard. We are going to hit the trail on the way back to the Northway though, on Sunday morning. We'll save that for another time.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Heard this as well. There is something called the Lake Placid 9er (?)- my hiking buddy is taking his kids up these (7 and 4). Some of these climbs look like good options too, Shrmdougluvr ...


Thanks. This is great.

We are far from outdoorsy people, but it's a nice, healthy, relatively inexpensive way to spend time together as a family. So far, in addition to some small hikes in the Albany area (e.g., Vroman's Nose, Bennett Hill, Indian Ladder Trail), the kids have done Shelving Rock and Buck Mountains, and Cobble Hill and Cobble Lookout in Lake Placid. You can see my m.o. - relatively straight ahead, bang-for-your-buck kind of hikes. Next year I could see us tackling a few of the more straight-forward 46ers too.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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Just following-up. We hit Lake Placid last weekend, just doing an overnight Saturday. Stayed at the Marriott Courtyard (I have too many points and certificates stagnating). It was nice, albeit a little inconvenient as it is just outside of the main area of the Village. Ate at Big Slide Brewery, which was excellent, and Lake Plaid Brewery, which was passable (same ownership group I believe). My wife and i shared a flight. I am not a craft beer guy, and nothing we sampled knocked my socks off. Got my banana ice cream at Lake Placid Creamery.

On Sunday morning we hiked Mount Jo, then Baxter Mountain on our way out of town. I did not realize how nice the whole ADK Loj area is there. I'm a big hotel guy, but I'd consider camping somewhere like that. Mount Jo is a strenuous little hike, but most people in moderate shape should tackle it with no problems. Decent views from the top - most notably Heart Lake and Wright and Algonquin Peaks. There was definitely snow/ice/frost on the high peaks, and the summits were mostly obscured by clouds.

Baxter was really a great little hike. I would describe it as easy, except for a few scrambles near the summit. Some nice views of the valley and Keene. It's the kind of hike that if i lived up that way, I would do a lot. Lots of switchbacks. Not really rocky or rooty. Easy descent (big for me as i have bad knees).
 
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pattycuse

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Climbed Santanoni today via "the Express".. As an aside, this route does not include the usual features of something labeled as an 'express' route- more like seven hours of climbing up and down a stream bed with numerous awkward scrambles but I digress...

Saw a grand total of three people today- two who turned back and one brave soul was STARTING at 4pm with no intention of camping. So it's early, but no overuse on that trail so far. This week at the Garden/Loj may be a different story...
 

OrangeDW

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Climbed Santanoni today via "the Express".. As an aside, this route does not include the usual features of something labeled as an 'express' route- more like seven hours of climbing up and down a stream bed with numerous awkward scrambles but I digress...

Saw a grand total of three people today- two who turned back and one brave soul was STARTING at 4pm with no intention of camping. So it's early, but no overuse on that trail so far. This week at the Garden/Loj may be a different story...

What?? I really hope that guy is a great hiker with all the necessary gear. Doing Santanoni in the dark, in winter, seems insane. And what would be the point if you can’t see anything anyway?
 

pattycuse

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What?? I really hope that guy is a great hiker with all the necessary gear. Doing Santanoni in the dark, in winter, seems insane. And what would be the point if you can’t see anything anyway?
All great points, we gently asked him if he was prepared for a night in the woods if necessary, which he said he was. That trail was brutal in daylight, I can't imagine it at night.
 

Shrmdougluvr

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All great points, we gently asked him if he was prepared for a night in the woods if necessary, which he said he was. That trail was brutal in daylight, I can't imagine it at night.

I watch this kid's, Jonathan Zaharek's, youtube videos of him hiking various High Peaks, and he just did a video of Santanoni (with Panther and Couchsachraga) from a hike he did in late November. He showed that only a couple-three people had signed into the Trail Log for that hike, and he was the only car in the lot that day. He went up via the express, but came down a different trail.
 

pattycuse

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I watch this kid's, Jonathan Zaharek's, youtube videos of him hiking various High Peaks, and he just did a video of Santanoni (with Panther and Couchsachraga) from a hike he did in late November. He showed that only a couple-three people had signed into the Trail Log for that hike, and he was the only car in the lot that day. He went up via the express, but came down a different trail.
Late November (or April) doesn't surprise me- shoulder months usually have lower usage given how difficult the conditions can be with the mud. But I'll have to check that channel out, thanks for the tip. I'm planning a couple more trips this winter that are going to start from the Loj or the Garden- that will be interesting to see whether the lots are packed.

The "normal" trail up to Santanoni goes up to Bradley Pond and then ascends to an intersection called Times Square- it's the junction to Couchsachraga & Panther as well as Santanoni. That trail is no picnic either. Unrelated, if you have no ambition to become a 46er- skip Couchsachraga. The name means "forbidden wilderness" and it's a good description.
 

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