Lake Placid, NY

8/10/16 to 8/13/16

In Lake Placid, we stayed at a KOA Campground. A very crowded and busy place even at this time of the year. Lots of tall pine trees but a noisy place. We stayed here 4 nights. 

Thursday 8/11/16   The first full day in Lake Placid, NY we decided to check out some of the Winter Olympic sites. The winter Olympics were held here in 1932 and again in 1980. Talking to some of the employees at the sites they said that the Olympics will never again be held in Lake Placid because the town is too small to handle a modern-day Olympics. Lake Placid is surrounded by the Adirondacks State Park land and can not expand any larger. But it's still where Olympians come to train.

We headed into town where they have two ice skating rinks. The one they used for the 1932 Olympics and the one they used for the 1980 Olympics. We ended up buying The Olympic Sites Passport. It looks like a press pass that you hang around your neck and it gets you into 4 different sites plus gives you 20% off some of the extra activities. We checked out both ice rinks which had skaters but they looked like young kids taking lessons. We then went to the Lake Placid Olympic Museum. I was a little disappointed with the Museum. It was really small and didn't have much to see. But things got better as the day went on.

The different Olympic sites are all over the place and it took us about 20 minutes to drive to the Olympic Jumping Complex. This is where the ski jumpers train. Our pass allowed us to go to the top of the 120-meter ski jump. To get there you take a chairlift to the jump and then an elevator to the top. What a great view from the top of that! Some jumpers actually train all year long and they put a type of plastic on the jump so it can be used without snow.

We then headed to the Olympic Sports Complex and took a tour of the world-class bobsled/luge track. This track is refrigerated and the bobsled teams can train from October through April. They take you to the top of the run and tell you about the history and other information and then you can walk down inside the actual bobsled run. (no ice at this time of the year) There's also a bobsled experience ride you can pay extra for. They use the old track from 1932 and a bobsled with wheels. There are a driver and brakeman in every sled and you can reach speeds of around 60 mph. We thought about it but it was already sold out for the day when we got there.

Next, we headed to Little Whiteface Mountain where the downhill skiers train. With our pass, we were able to ride the Gondola to the top of the Mountain.

After taking in the sites from the top of the Gondola ride we got to go even higher. Although this has nothing to do with the Olympics our pass entitled us to drive to the top of Whiteface mountain on the Veterans Memorial Highway. This road opened in 1935 and there's a castle near the top. You drive up to the castle, park your car and then walk up to the summit on granite stairs and boulders. There's also an elevator that you can take to the summit near the parking area. We walked the whole way up, took the elevator down, got back on the elevator, went up to the summit and then walked back down. For the day Rose's Fitbit registered 6-1/2 miles and 50 flights of stairs! Check out some of the views from the top.

Friday 8/12/16    I was looking for a hike to go on today so I used Google. I wanted something that would take a couple hours. The one I decided on was Cascade Mountain. Here's what it said: "Cascade is a 4.8-mile round trip. The trail is fairly moderate, aside from a couple short steeper pitches. At 1.8 miles is a ledge with the first views. The final 0.2 miles or so is open rock scrambling." Well that doesn't sound too bad, right? Well, let me tell you this was the most strenuous hike we have ever been on! It started out fine but then it was nothing but rocks, rocks, and more rocks all uphill. These were not short steeper pitches. They were long very steep pitches. We started around 10:00 and didn't get back down until around 4:00. It's hard for me to explain how hard this hike was and you really can't see how steep it is in the pictures. There were a few times where we almost turned around but we decided we had to make it to the top. When we got near the top it started raining. We couldn't see the summit because of the mist. After 10 minutes of standing in the rain it cleared up and we continued to the top. Coming down was also hard because now all the rocks were wet and slippery. When we got back to the truck Rose's Fitbit said we walked 9.74 miles and did 140 flights of stairs! Tomorrow we are taking a day off.

Saturday 8/13/16    It started raining hard sometime during the night and the downpour lasted most of the day. Good thing we decided to relax today. Our day's activities included washing clothes and running into town for diesel fuel.

Lake Placid was a great trip. Lots to see and do and the KOA is a great place to stay. We should have spent a week there and did more hiking. The Adirondack Mountain area is a beautiful place.

Sunday 8/14/16     We packed up and headed to The Thousand Islands.

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