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Adirondack Explorer

June, 2018

Lisa Ballard wins award for ‘Explorer’ story

Saranac Lake native Lisa Ballard has won a national award for a story about hiking with her brother that appeared in the Adirondack Explorer. Her article, titled “On Crane with Wayne,” won second place in the Outdoor Writers Association of America for stories in the Outdoor Fun and Adventure category. The award was announced at the association’s annual conference in June. Ballard, who now lives in Montana, wrote about climbing Crane Mountain with her brother, Wayne Feinberg, a Saranac Lake real-estate agent. Evidently, Wayne is not a big fan of hiking and had to be coaxed into going. “He was >>More


May, 2018

A cycling map for Lake Placid/Saranac Lake

After we got six inches of snow in Saranac Lake this week you could understand why people were wondering if winter would ever end. Never fear: summer is on its way, and Green Goat Maps can help you make the most of it. Green Goat recently published its “Lake Placid and Saranac Lake Cycling Map” and “Saranac Lake Boating & Fishing Map.” They hit stores just a few months after the company published its first map, “Lake Placid and Saranac Lake Winter Trails Map.” Like the first map, the two new ones measure 24 inches by 18 inches and fold >>More


January, 2018

Backcountry-ski conditions about to deteriorate

backcountry skiing

I just got back from touring the Andalusia region of southern Spain with Carol Fox and my daughter Martha. On one day we took a wonderful hike into the Sierra Nevada where we saw goats roaming the treeless hills. Although the mountains are not far from the Mediterranean Sea, they are snow-capped. The highest top 10,000 feet. I wore a T-shirt on that hike. I felt a little guilty about soaking up the sun while friends back home, especially in the Adirondacks, were suffering through below-zero days. OK, so I didn’t feel guilty. However, as I perused posts on Facebook, >>More


November, 2017

An early-season ski in the Adirondacks

Bloomingdale Bog Trail

We got three to four inches of snow Sunday night, just enough to lure me out of the office for a backcountry ski on my lunch hour on Monday afternoon. I went to the Bloomingdale Bog Trail, an old railroad bed that needs only a few inches to be skiable. The base was thin, but overall the skiing was quite good. The trail starts off Route 86 outside Saranac Lake and extends about eight miles to Onchiota. On Monday, I skied about two miles up the trail, just far enough to get a good view of the bog, and then >>More


July, 2017

Bouldering On Baker: A Non-Routine Workout Routine

Baker Mountain on the edge of the village of Saranac Lake is one of the most popular peaks in the Adirondacks. Like many other local residents, I’ve hiked it countless times and thought I had seen it all. I was wrong. Will Roth recently made the hike to Baker’s summit more interesting for rock climbers: he has established a bouldering circuit of six “problems” (miniature climbing routes), all located just off the trail. It’s just one more example of why Saranac Lake is a cool place to live. Will says the challenge is to complete the circuit while hiking to >>More


March, 2017

Adirondack Spring Skiing On Bloomingdale Bog Trail

We lost much our snow base around Saranac Lake in recent weeks. For my lunch-hour ski on Thursday, I was rattling my brain for a smooth trail or frozen pond, someplace where you can ski without a lot of snow. I settled on the Bloomingdale Bog Trail, which starts a few miles north of the village. Because it follows an old railroad bed, the trail is wide and flat. In winter, the bog trail is used by snowmobilers, so the base that was left was well packed. Yet the top few inches had been softened by the warm sun, creating >>More


March, 2017

State: Rail Trail Doable Despite Deed Questions

Uncertainty about deeds held up for months the lawsuit filed against the state over its plan to remove tracks and create a 34-mile rail trail between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake. The state thought it owned the entire rail corridor but discovered it does not have title to two parcels: a half-mile stretch near North Country Community College in Saranac Lake and a shorter stretch at the end of the line in Lake Placid. Although the state now holds an easement allowing public access to both parcels, the easement will terminate if the tracks are removed. In court papers, state >>More


March, 2017

Trail Advocates Join Adirondack Rail-Trail Lawsuit

Adirondack Recreational Trail Advocates filed a friend-of-the-court brief this week in the lawsuit over the state’s plan to remove 34 miles of railroad tracks between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake and create a trail for bicycling, hiking, snowmobiling, and other pursuits. ARTA joined the suit on the side of three state agencies being sued: the Department of Environmental Conservation, the Department of Transportation, and the Adirondack Park Agency. The Adirondack Railway Preservation Society, based in Utica, contends the plan to divide the state-owned Adirondack Rail Corridor into an 85-mile rail segment and a 34-mile trail segment is illegal. DEC and >>More


March, 2017

Snowshoer Rejects Plea Deal In Sex-Abuse Case

A snowshoer from India charged with abusing a 12-year-old girl in Saranac Lake has rejected a plea bargain, choosing instead to put his fate in the hands of a grand jury. In a case that has attracted international attention, Tanveer Hussain, 24, of Kashmir faces charges of first-degree sexual abuse, a felony, and endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor. Hussain’s attorney, Brian Barrett of Lake Placid, said Hussain was offered a chance to plead guilty to the misdemeanor and return home, but his client refused. Essex County District Attorney Kristy Sprague confirmed the deal was offered. St. Armand >>More


December, 2016

The Powder Is Gone, But We Still Have A Good Base

On Saturday, my girlfriend Carol and I skied up the unplowed Whiteface Veterans Memorial Highway. From the tollbooth to the end of the road it’s a 5.4-mile climb, long but not very steep. It took us roughly three hours. Of course, the descent is the fun part. It normally takes less than an hour. Because there was so much powder, our downhill run took a little longer. In places, the skiing was almost too mellow, especially between the two hairpin turns. Often we pushed with our poles to sustain momentum. Since this was Carol’s first time skiing the highway, this >>More


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