I was in the Adirondack Park last week and while I did not have a chance to visit Lost Brook Tract I did get into the back country, climbing Mount Adams (which I highly recommend) and doing a little bushwhacking in the newly acquired MacIntyre East Tract. But it was another place, not as remote as the MacIntyre tract yet as far removed from the world at large as any place I’ve ever been, that called to my consciousness in my hour of need. No such call could resonate more deeply in me than that of Osprey Bay. » Continue Reading.
Posts Tagged ‘Blue Mountain Lake’
My family has been madly dusting off the winter muck with our annual springtime rituals. We’ve shoveled seemingly endless piles of road sand from our driveway. We’ve mended sails and cleaned off boats. We’ve checked life-jackets sizes and replaced the winter equipment with summer gear. We are not the only ones that have spent these spring days making sure everything is set for a perfect summer.
The Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake has spent its winter months setting up new special exhibits as well as scheduling its family programing, lectures series and events to make sure everything is set for its May 22 opening. » Continue Reading.
Alvah Dunning was perhaps the most famous of Raquette Lake guides, said to have helped lead the first excursion of sportsmen to Raquette Lake at age eleven. Born in Lake Piseco in 1816, he lived there until 1860 when he was forced to flee after beating his wife.
From that moment on, he removed himself from society in favor of the freedom of the wilderness. » Continue Reading.
He grew up on the family dairy farm in Peru, New York, entered seminary in Ogdensburg, and spent his career in parishes of the Ogdensburg Diocese in northern New York. He has been in Indian Lake for three and a half years and has also served in churches in Saranac Lake and Ausable Forks, among other communities. He has been an avid hiker and at the age of eighty-one is one hike short of completing the Adirondack Forty-Six for the twenty-fifth time. » Continue Reading.
“Few fully understand what the Adirondack wilderness really is. It is a mystery even to those who have crossed and recrossed it by boats along it avenues, the lakes; and on foot through its vast and silent recesses…In this remote section, filed with the most rugged mountains, where unnamed waterfalls pour in snowy tresses from the dark overhanging cliffs…the adventurous trapper or explorer must carry upon his back his blankets and heavy stock of food. Yet, though the woodsman may pass his lifetime in some of the wilderness, it is still a mystery to him.”
– Verplanck Colvin, Superintendent of the Adirondack Survey » Continue Reading.
On our visits to the Adirondack Museum, my family has always found that there really isn’t enough time to see it all in one day. That is why the Adirondack Museum Cabin Fever Sundays present a different way of learning about the vast information tucked within the museum’s buildings in Blue Mountain Lake.
According to Adirondack Museum Marketing Assistant Paige Doerner the second Cabin Fever event will feature Adirondack Life Senior Editor Niki Kourofsky’s tales of “Adirondack Outlaws.” Kourofsky is bringing the Adirondack’s criminal element to light and is highlighting just a few of the historical scallywags, bandits and fiends from her recently published book, Adirondack Outlaws: Bad Boys and Lawless Ladies. » Continue Reading.
The year after I bought my Hornbeck Canoe in 1991, my friend, Linda, rented a camp on Third Lake, near Old Forge. One weekend I loaded my new canoe on top of my car and drove to her camp, excited that I could spend the weekend in the Adirondacks.
I thought, Oh, Great. This is my opportunity to test out my solo canoe on the Adirondack waters. I wanted to learn as much as I could about my new canoe and how it handled in different situations. » Continue Reading.
“Honest John Plumbley [sic], the prince of guides, patient as a hound, and as faithful, – a man who knows the wilderness as a farmer knows his fields, whose instinct is never at fault, whose temper is never ruffled, whose paddle is silent as falling snow, whose eye is true along the sights, whose pancakes are the wonder of the woods…”
– Rev. William H. H. Murray, Adventures in the Wilderness, 1869.
William H. H. Murray is widely credited with bringing the masses to the Adirondacks. The historian Warder Cadbury said, “Murray quite literally popularized both wilderness and the Adirondacks.” “Murray’s Rush”, the onslaught of tourists who rushed to the mountains in response to his book, gave rise to the claim that the Adirondacks are the birthplace of the American vacation.
John Plumley* is the man who brought the Adirondacks to Murray. » Continue Reading.
The summer of 1988 I attended a Syracuse University computer software workshop at the Minnowbrook Conference Center at Blue Mountain Lake. During an afternoon break from the workshop, two colleagues and I went for a walk starting at a parking lot on Lake Durant, a small state-owned lake near the village of Blue Mountain Lake. A woman with a small canoe on top of her car pulled up to the lake near where we were walking. She parked, opened the door, unfastened the canoe straps, and lifted the canoe off her car, handling it with ease. She placed the canoe in the water and paddled across Lake Durant. She did this all within five minutes.
“I want that.” I shouted, feeling the freedom that comes from observing such independence. » Continue Reading.
When I walk the land around Matthew Beach’s original hut and William Wood’s shanty on Raquette Lake’s Indian Point, I imagine the Abenaki guide Mitchell Sabattis pulling into their landings in a canoe or guideboat made by his own hand. Indian Point was a waypoint for many a traveler boating through the Central Adirondacks.
While it is impossible to know how often Sabattis visited those acres, we have written record of at least three occasions: his trips with Joel Tyler Headley in 1844-46, accompanying C. W. Webber in 1849, and an expedition of women who explored the region in 1873 (beautifully told in Barbara McMartin’s book To the Lake of the Skies).
Sabattis guided for my great-great-grandfather George Hornell Thacher in 1862 as he explored the region from a base camp Sabattis had on Blue Mountain Lake’s Crane Point. Even if Thacher and his guide traveled to Raquette Lake however, it’s unlikely they spent a night on Indian Point. Sabattis maintained a campsite from 1852 to 1877 on Watch Point according to Ken Hawks, who now owns the property. » Continue Reading.