Friday, January 10, 2020

It’s Time for Great Camp Santanoni Winter Weekends

Newcomb’s Camp Santanoni hosts three winter weekends each year, which provide an opportunity for people to have access to the Great Camp buildings that are not open year-round. The first winter weekend is January 18-20, with the next two set for February 15-17, March 14-15.

Don’t forget the Great Camp Santanoni is always open to the public, but these Winter Weekends provide public access to the interior of the remaining historic buildings on the property as well as historical educational information.

Cross-country skiers and snowshoers will have access to the remaining historical camp properties and interpretative displays through tours with Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH) volunteers. The 10-mile round trip cross-country ski or snowshoe winter adventure starts from Camp Santanoni’s Gate House reaching the old farm buildings in one (1) mile and 0.5-mile spur trail leading to the nearby 3.6-mile Adirondack Interpretive Center’s trail system. The easy trail continues along the old road leading to the Main Lodge at Great Camp Santanoni and is perfect for the novice skier and challenging enough to provide a great workout for a more experienced person.

The five-mile carriage road leads from the gatehouse to the isolated main lodge complex and the Artist’s Studio along the shores of Newcomb Lake. During Winter Weekends, bring a cup if you can to enjoy free coffee, tea or hot chocolate by the woodstove though there will be some cups available. Be prepared to carry out whatever you carry in.

Camp Santanoni was built in the late 1800s by Robert and Anna Pruyn as a refuge from city life. Originally the property consisted of more than four dozen buildings on 12,900 acres including a working farm, the Gate Lodge complex, and a huge rustic Main Lodge though now only a few of the original structures remain. Camp Santanoni is now a National Historic Landmark gradually being restored through a partnership between DEC, AARCH and the town of Newcomb.

Make sure to check the AARCH‘s social media pages for the latest snow conditions and any scheduled changes.

Photo of the Great Camp Santanoni Artist Cabin used with permission of AARCH.

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Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

4 Responses

  1. Tim-Brunswick says:

    I’ve read and re-read the article, but I cannot determine whether or not you can actually “drive” a vehicle into the great camp? “Access” can mean a lot of things, but if you can’t use a motorized vehicle then it should be clearly stated and once again in the Adirondack Park the elderly,mobility handicapped, etc, etc will be shut out from this event.

    Many years ago I canoed from Duck Hole into Newcomb lake and did view some of the Great Camp. I can no longer do that, nor can I hike, etc. to the extent necessary to get into the camp for these special weekends. If someone would clarify whether or not you can actually drive into the great camp or not it would be much appreciated.

    Thank you

    • Boreas says:

      The last I knew, no automobile/snowmobile access. It is a great ski, but not very challenging. During warmer months there often is a horse-drawn wagon people can ride. I don’t know about SP-3 access or motorized wheelchair access.

      • Boreas says:

        Sleigh rides to/from the compound would be nice for these special winter weekends, but I am not aware of them.

  2. There is not motorized access on this trail. In the summer and during other special events there are horse and wagon rides that allow for access to anyone with mobility issues. Winter weekends do not have wagon/sleigh rides available.

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