Lake George

Lake George
Lake George - from Tongue Mtn Range - 11/11/2011

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Spruce Mountain - Lake George Wild Forest - 1/21/18

There's no doubt that there are a lot of fantastic viewpoints overlooking Lake George.   On the east side of the lake, one of the best is from Spruce Mountain, a little known location near Huletts Landing.  Today was my third visit here; all in winter.

It was a warm day and a fleece and microspikes were all that was needed for extra gear.  I parked at the end of the plowed portion of North Road and Rev and I started out.  We followed the unplowed potion of North Road until we came to the Richard Phillips Hayes property and his marked trails that lead to state land.

The steep portion of this hike is near the beginning.  Once you get up on the ridge, there is not too much more elevation gain and you are treated to a series of viewpoints.  The best viewpoint is just before the true summit, near where the airway beacon used to be.

There are several trails in the area.  Some are marked with red discs and there is also a white blaze trail that hugs the western edge of the ridge.  There are also some signs.  That being said, portions of the marked trails are not well marked.  If you go, make sure you have map and compass. 
Today's view.  Some ice this year.

This photo was from 2 years ago 1/18/16 

It was overcast at the start, but luck was on my side and the clouds began to break just as I was getting to the viewpoints.

Interesting sign at the start

The seasonal portion of North Road

Richard Philips Hayes has a vision.  Thank you!

Choices, choices.

A first look

Sugarloaf Mountain back left, Black Mountain back center.

A closer look

Blue skies beginning to emerge!

Mother Bunch islands in the distance

The hamlet of Huletts Landing is tucked on the cove on the left.

My trusted scout... Rev 


A zoom view

Remains of the airway beacon

Rev on the descent

Richard Philips Hayes does a great job with his signs.  He also did the Shore Owner Association (SOA) signs in Lake Placid 

The old schoolhouse.   There is a #2 on the other side.

Hike Stats:
Hike Distance:  ~ 4 miles
Hike Time:  3 hours, including stops
Elevation Gain:  ~ 1000'

The route

The route on the Nat Geo map.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Cascade & Porter Mountains - High Peaks Wilderness Area - 1/20/18

Leesa & I have been extremely busy with work thus far this year, but we took some time today to re-visit Cascade and Porter Mountains in the High Peaks Wilderness Area.  It was a warm day with temperatures in the mid-30's, but of course that doesn't apply to the summit of Cascade.  There was a moderate breeze that kept things feeling a little cooler.

We didn't arrive until 11:30, and weren't sure we'd be able to find a parking spot, but we were in luck.  We work our snowshoes the entire way.  They were required, but they weren't really needed.  Many folks were not wearing theirs on the way down, in favor of spikes to help with grip on the ice.

Of course since we started late, we saw many people coming down as we were going up.  We moved at a slow pace today and took 2 hours to climb to Porter.   On the way back, Rev and I dashed up Cascade.   Leesa opted to avoid the wind and get a small head start on us on the way down.

I always like to tag Cascade, even if the wind is whipping.  That last 0.2 mile transformation to climb above treeline can lead to a world of  isolation on the summit.   It always feels so cool to me.   You can tell by the final pictures below that it really is different up there.

Note:  - Leesa and I found some boots left behind in the mostly empty parking lot in the afternoon.  We picked them up in order to hopefully find their owner through social media.  If you left boots behind on Saturday 1/20 in the Cascade parking lot before 3:30 PM, send us a comment in order to reclaim them!          

A first peak below

Rev, leading the charge

Leesa climbing Porter

The summit of Porter

Leesa and Rev on Porter 

Rev heading for Cascade

Much windier on Cascade (as is often the case)

You can see the leash blowing and Rev fighting the wind

Pretty isolated looking on this day 

Leesa cautiously making her way down

Hike Stats:
Hike Distance: 5.6 miles
Hike Time:  4 hours
Total Vertical Gain: 2300'

The trails