From Scenic Nature Parks, City Hikes and Historic Tours- Explore the Adirondack Region on Foot Adirondack Region, N.Y. - The Adirondack Park in Northern New York is home to more than 2,000 miles of hiking trails - traversing the highest point in New York State, all the way to the southern edges of Lake Champlain. This summer, experience the thrill of discovery on an Adirondack hiking trail - from a trek into an old "ghost town," to the waterfalls of the St. Lawrence Seaway - find unique Adirondack attractions and family-friendly outdoor recreation. The Top Seven Adirondack Region Hiking Experiences for Families in 2012:
- 1. History, Mystery and Lore: Bonaparte's Cave State Forest. Located in the Adirondack Tughill Region near Harrisville, the area was named after Napoleon Bonaparte's brother who escaped to New York after the Emperor had been arrested and exiled to Elba. Rumor and historic fact merge into local lore, and legend says that Napoleon's brother eluded capture by hiding in caves around one of the three state forest ponds. The forest spans more than 1,400 acres and includes excellent trout fishing on Green Pond.
- 2. Waterfall Hikes in the St. Lawrence Seaway: Lampson Falls and Harper's Falls. Located in the Grasse River Wild Forest, the St. Lawrence Seaway is home to several waterfalls, including:
- a. Lampson Falls, located along County Route 27 between Clare and Degrasse, is an easy 15 minute hike along a gently sloping, yet wide trail that is universally accessible. A narrow path leads to a small beach area and reflection pool offer the perfect picnicking spot at the base of the falls.
- b. Harper's Falls is located on Donnerville Road off of County Route 27 between Canton and Clare. The trailhead is located half-a-mile from the intersection of county routes 27 and 24, and it is a two mile round trip hike.
- 3. Historic Walking Tours of the Lake Champlain Region: Plattsburgh. Trek back in time and explore the history of the Adirondacks. The Champlain Coast offers incredible military history, and 2012 marks the bicentennial of the War of 1812. This "city hiking" route travels along the Saranac River, offering easy access to restaurants and shops, with incredible views of the surrounding landscape. Stop at the Champlain Monument to Samuel de Champlain, visit the oldest structures in Plattsburgh, hit the farmers' market in Trinity Park and end your hike at the Clinton County Historical Museum.
- 4. Fire Towers in the Adirondack Lakes Region: St. Regis, Azure and Loon Lake. Fire towers rise as historic monuments from these three peaks in the Adirondack Lakes Region.
- a. St. Regis Mountain is a moderately difficult five mile round-trip hike. The trail winds from Keese Mills Road in Paul Smiths through hardwood forests to a rocky summit offering panoramic views of the surrounding lakes and distant High Peaks.
- b. Azure Mountain is a moderate two mile round trip hike. Located on NYS Route 458 along Blur Mountain Road, this "off-the-beaten" track trail offers exceptional views of the Adirondack Lakes Region and paddling routes. It is also a popular spot for Adirondack boreal birds, including Ravens.
- c. Loon Lake Mountain is six mile round-trip, and is located off of NYS Route 26 - just across the road from Grass Pond. Access to the trailhead was recently granted across private property, cutting the distance to the summit considerably. Traverse wooden bridges and glimpse Adirondack wildflowers like purple trillium, trout lily and spring beauty.
- 5. Adirondack Ghost Town: Adirondac/Tahawus Mines in Newcomb. Once home to a booming iron mine, the historic town of Adirondac sits like a long forgotten relic of another era. Access the Adirondac/Tahawus Mines trailhead from Exit 29 off of Interstate 87, traveling west on Blue Ridge Road for 17.4 miles, to Tahawus Road. The trailhead is marked. From the summit, glimpse the unspoiled Adirondack landscape, Henderson Lake and Lake Sanford, as well as the stripped land where the mining operation once stood.
- 6. Extreme Hiking in the Lake George Region: Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course. Explore the Adirondack canopy and "hike" along the tree-tops. Tackle challenging obstacle courses, ziplines, cable bridges and more. Located in Bolton Landing off of Westwood Forest Lane, the course is open year-round, offering heart-pumping thrills for adults and children 7 years and older.
- 7. Backcountry Hiking in the Adirondack Wild: Northville-Placid Trail. This 133-mile hiking trail runs from the southern terminus on the west end of the Sacandaga Bridge to the northern terminus on Averyville Road in Lake Placid. Lean-tos are located along the way for Adirondack camping - and hikers will want to plan their trip in advance.
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