Living the Wild Life in the ADK

Living the Wild Life in the ADK

Amp up your summer vacation plans.


Whitewater thrills

Exploring little known stretches of whitewater can yield both good and bad results, often on the same trip. Round Lake Outlet is all good.

Like any good treasure though, Round Lake Outlet carries with it plenty of tall tales which required some digging to get to. I had heard plenty about Round Lake Outlet to keep me away. According to local legend, the biggest rapid was named "Don't Tell Karen" after pioneer Don Morris made a minor mistake and ended up taking the worst swim of his life. When he finally made it out of the river, he made his paddling companions swear not to tell his wife Karen about the mishap. Other stories warned of the extensive flatwater paddle required to access the rapids, not to mention the headwind, black flies, cold, and more. If that weren't enough, photos from a friend's trip in at high water revealed a stacked series of ledges that looked formidable at best. He described marginal rapids that left him portaging more than paddling.


Wild encounter

Lost in thought in an expanse of pine trees in Wilmington, in the shadow of Whiteface Mountain, I become aware that something lightly colored is moving quickly through the undergrowth. Shifting from side to side, peering through the thin spaces between the trees, I realize that what I am seeing is a wolf.

It shouldn’t be surprising; after all, on a nearby tree hangs a bright yellow sign reading, “wolf crossing” and I am here, in this spot, to view wildlife. Nevertheless, the realization that I’m seeing a wolf, trotting with purpose along a fenceline, feels unexpected. My smile is enormous, my heart in my throat. The wolf, it turns out, is named Kiska. She is a gorgeous, golden-colored gray wolf, one of three residing at the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge and Rehabilitation Center in Wilmington.


Cycle to a scenic vacation

Talk to any serious cyclist and they will tell you the Lake Champlain Region offers some of the best cycling anywhere. Lake Champlain Bikeways has made it their mission to get the word out to avid cyclists, and they have identified over 1,600 miles of themed loops and bike routes throughout this scenic valley. This is a place where winding roads roll past farms and meadows, snake along Lake Champlain, and serve up expansive mountain views as they connect small communities packed with amenities and friendly people. These bikeways range in length from 10 to 60 miles and span two states and two countries, so it's easy to pick the journey that's best for you. Read on to learn more!


Waterfall bliss

Spring is a time of renewal in the Adirondacks. After a long winter buried in snow and ice, the land slowly comes back to life—and we begin a restorative process of our own, too. But it takes something stronger than raking lawns and turning over gardens to shake the remnants of cabin fever. For that, I needed an adventure. So I turned to the true harbinger of spring in the Adirondacks: waterfalls.


Fishing 101

The time has come that we have been waiting patiently for. The ice has melted on the lakes and the water is flowing. Dig out your dusty ol’ fishing pole and get out on the water!

Whether you’re visiting or living in the area, the Adirondack Mountains are a prime location for fishing, even if it is your first time. There are plenty of resources available in order to get your line in the water so you can catch that big, storytelling-worthy fish. 


Not your average cooking class

I spent a Saturday afternoon learning to cook potstickers with a master chef in a lakeside setting. You, too, can have the opportunity to take a cooking lesson with one of the Adirondacks’ most celebrated chefs, Curtiss Hemm, at the Mirror Lake Inn — set within one of Lake Placid’s most beautiful settings. Chef Curtiss is bringing his talents this summer in a cooking series open to the public that includes such classes as “A Passage to India” and “The Art of Roman Cooking” to name a couple. The goals of the classes are to feed you these delicious delights, but also to convince you that you too can cook this at home. After my class with Chef Curtiss I was pretty convinced that I could master the perfect dough for the perfect potsticker. Whether or not this is true is besides the point! (However, don’t tell Curtiss I said that! I am not historically a master in the kitchen.) Curtiss’ lessons are accessible whether you’re a master or you still confuse the oven for the stove in conversation.


Fabulous farmers markets

Malone and Northern Franklin County in general is proud to boast many farmers markets and roadside farm stands throughout the spring, summer, and fall. Because of the region's plentiful farm land and strong agricultural community, the farmers markets are well stocked with fresh vegetables, berries, herbs, local beef, pork, and poultry.


Four ways to camp

Spending the night indoors is a fine way to pamper yourself, and it’s pretty easy to prepare for a trip when there’s a bed waiting for you on the other end. But if you really want to be immersed in nature and take in all of the sights and sounds of an Adirondack forest, you need to get out there and live in it, even if it’s only for a night or two. In the Adirondacks, finding a campsite to fit your style can be as easy as finding a Starbucks in the city — they’re everywhere. Want a hot shower? We have it. Want a bit of luxury with your fire pit? That’s easy! Want to wake up to the sun glistening off of a mountain lake? Get your backpack ready and keep reading to learn more!