The opening of the Essex Chain Lakes attracts a flock of paddlers on a colorful autumn day. By Phil Brown AFTER CARRYING our canoes a quarter-mile, paddling briefly across Deer Pond, and then carrying another half-mile, Sue Bibeau and I were eager to begin our exploration of the Essex Chain Lakes, a string of pristine ponds surrounded by wild peaks. As soon as we put in, though, we encountered another canoeist, and we had to stop for a chat. It was Mike Carr, executive director of the Adirondack Nature Conservancy. Without him, we wouldn’t be here. Thanks to Carr and >>More
Forty-Sixer says three bruins followed her for a mile on the Northville-Placid Trail. By Leigh Hornbeck SMART HIKERS know what to do when they come upon a black bear in the woods: wave your arms, yell, and stand your ground. Yet that didn’t work for Amy Stafford. Stafford, who is twenty-two, was forced to stab a bear in the face when it charged her in the woods on the Northville-Placid Trail. “The whole time I kept thinking, if this bear wanted me, it could have me in a heartbeat. I considered throwing things at it, running at it, but I >>More
Pigeon Lake Wilderness offers skiers a quiet refuge in snowmobiling country. By Phil Brown LAST WINTER, a former colleague got in touch to see if I wanted to go skiing in the Inlet area. Not one to turn down a chance to ski or catch up with a friend, I suggested we do the loop around Cascade Lake in the Pigeon Lake Wilderness. We agreed to meet for lunch at the Hard Times Café in Eagle Bay, a few miles west of downtown Inlet. When I arrived, just before noon, the restaurant was packed with snowmobilers. I felt a little >>More
The Adirondack Explorer staff hiked the Saranac Lake 6 and prepared this guide containing trail descriptions, maps, and photographs.
State acquisition of Essex Chain Lakes Tract from the Nature Conservancy opens up Blackwell Stillwater to flatwater paddlers. By Phil Brown IN THE LAST ISSUE of the Explorer, I wrote about paddling a stretch of the upper Hudson River newly open to the public. As you may recall, we started in Newcomb and traveled about six miles downriver, taking out near an iron bridge just below the confluence with the Goodnow River. I thoroughly enjoyed that trip, but I was surprised by the number of rapids, so I returned to the Hudson in July to see if the river had >>More
The Mountaineer in Keene Valley is sponsoring the Adirondack Fly Fishing Festival this weekend. Read the article in the Adirondack Daily Enterprise.
Backcountry skiers get the backing of Saranac Lake to change state rules to allow ski glades in the Forest Preserve. Read more.
By Kenneth Aaron The first time Dave Cilley encountered the no-trespassing cable across Shingle Shanty Brook, it was in the late 1970s or 1980s, shortly after the state purchased land around Lake Lila and he was exploring the area. He turned back, and it’s been forbidden fruit for him ever since. Until this year, that is, after a state judge ruled that the public has a right to travel the waterway—Mud Pond, Mud Pond Outlet, and a privately owned stretch of Shingle Shanty Brook—under the common-law right of navigation. The landowners, the Friends of Thayer Lake and the Brandreth >>More
Canoeists explore stretch of upper Hudson recently acquired by state. By Phil Brown Some say the upper Hudson River below Newcomb has always been open for paddling, and they’re right—assuming you’re capable of shooting class IV rapids in the Hudson Gorge. For the rest of us, this part of the Hudson opened this spring. In December, the state bought a long stretch of the Hudson from the Nature Conservancy, part of the 17,320-acre Essex Chain Tract. As a result of the acquisition, you can now paddle down the Hudson from Newcomb and exit before reaching the dangerous gorge. As part >>More
The other day I posted an item on Adirondack Almanack about old climbing routes on Noonmark Mountain. I focused on the Wiessner Route, vertical crack rated 5.8+ on the Yosemite Decimal System scale, making it the hardest route put up by Fritz Wiessner in the Adirondacks. The post contains photos of the route and an unusual piton in the crack. I thought it might be interesting to post here photos of all six of the routes on Noonmark. All are one-pitch routes that lead to the summit. The gallery shows the start of each route in order, from climber’s left >>More