An adventure on high awaits

Old Forge is quintessential Adirondacks

Just 45 minutes North of Utica, 90 minutes east of Syracuse and two hours northwest of Albany, Old Forge is in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, surrounded by some of the most unique natural beauty in the region. And with the Fulton chain of lakes running right through town, Old Forge is a perfect four-seasons get-away-from-it-all destination.
The Adirondack Park extends across six million acres in upstate New York and supports more than 3,000 lakes and ponds, 30,000 miles of rivers and streams and 2,000 miles of hiking trails.
Characterized by snowy winters that make the most of top-ranked alpine ski centers and endless cross-country ski trails, warm, sunny summers perfect for hiking the High Peaks at lower elevations, as well as boating, biking or golfing — New York’s Adirondack region is
a year-round playground.
Surrounded by hundreds of state hiking trails, recreation areas, 150 miles of shoreline and an abundance of sunshine, fresh air and pristine waterways, Old Forge and Blue Mountain Lake are perfect Adirondack adventure hubs.
Explore nature parks, tour historic sites, and play at the many family-friendly attractions. You’ll never run out of things
to do in the Adirondacks.
Whether it’s hiking, canoeing, fishing, boating, mountain biking, strolling eclectic Main Street shops, or just watching the sun slip over the horizon behind your feet propped on a porch rail, Old Forge and Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondacks are an explorer’s playground.

Located on the busy corner of Crosby Boulevard, Fulton Street and Route 28, The Old Forge Hardware has served as a bustling center of commerce for more than 100 years. It carries a unique array of Adirondack-themed goods ranging from books, clothing, furniture, gourmet foods, hardware and even yarn.

The Adirondack Museum collection includes artifacts representing community life from across the Adirondacks. The museum actively collects, preserves and exhibits objects that were made or used by Adirondackers. These objects are historical documents that tell how people live, work, and play on the Adirondack landscape. There are now some 30,000 objects, more than 70,000 photographs, 9,511 books, and 800 pages of original manuscript materials housed and exhibited at the Adirondack Museum.

Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company is committed to educating and outfitting customers to fully enjoy the natural wonders of the Adirondacks. Its staff is dedicated to helping outdoor enthusiasts find the clothing, gear or boat that will suit their needs and budget while making travel in the wilderness safe and rewarding.
The company has an extensive inventory of rental canoes and kayaks for a wide range of paddling opportunities from leisurely three-hour paddles on the Moose River, to daily and weekly rentals for any excursion, to multi-day trips along the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, cover all the details and find essential gear here. You pick your destination and staff handles the rest.

Sisters Bistro was opened to offer locals and visitors to this Adirondack mountain town an alternative way to dine. Its menu is crafted with fresh, locally grown organic ingredients and changes regularly depending upon what is in season. They believe in offering good food that’s good for you. They offer a full bar and an extensive wine list that includes a choice of more than 20 wines available by the glass. Drop in and see what’s cookin.’

Named for the mountains within the park, the Adirondacks are part of the Northern Deciduous Forest, the largest temperate forest in the world. It’s larger than Vermont or Massachusetts; larger even than Yellowstone, Glacier, Grand Canyon, Great Smokies and Yosemite national parks combined. The park is the largest in the lower 48 states.
The Adirondack Peaks range anywhere from 1,200 feet to the 5,343-foot Mt. Marcy, the park’s and New York’s tallest. The 46 tallest summits above 4,000 feet are known as the High Peaks.
Hiking trails dot the landscape, opening up opportunities for trips that can be planned for under an hour to multi-day excursions.
Maybe you want a short walk in the woods — try Cathedral Pines. Want that challenge? Visit Snowy Mountain for a more trying hike to outstanding views of the Little High Peaks. Find a list of hiking trails at

Enchanted Forest Water Safari is the largest outdoor water park in New York. Travel down one of the many water slides, visit the Enchanted Forest or race to the finish line in scaled-down Indy cars around hair-pin turns and elevated straightaways. It’s fun for all ages and a perennial family-favorite vacation destination. Open mid-June through Labor Day. Admission includes unlimited access to 32 water rides, all shows and more than 50 rides and attractions in all.

4 P.M., “FORE!”
Thendara Golf Club, an 18-hole championship golf course is located two minutes from the center of Old Forge. This meticulously kept course with doglegs, sweeping fairways, elevated and rolling greens is

a golfers’ golf course and a challenge no matter what your level of play.

Paddle the Middle Branch of the Moose River from Tickner’s Dock in Old Forge to its private whistle stop along the historic Adirondack Scenic Railroad. Yes, you and your boat travel back to town via this vintage train.
The Moose River drifts slowly downstream toward Lock & Dam, an old wooden spillway, then twists and turns through the Black River Wild Forest. Views of Flatrock and Little Round Top mountains blend with lowland cedar marshes.
Approximately six miles downstream, paddlers pull out at Tickner’s Landing, where boats and people are boarded and return on a scheduled train. Transportation is provided back to Tickner’s Shop from the train station. Two short 25-yard portages are necessary with one optional carry around a set of riffles.

If you enjoy the arts, the View Arts Center in Old Forge is well worth a visit. With its dedication to the promotion of the arts, from sculpture to watercolor, photography to pantomime and an interest in retaining the true spirit of the Adirondacks, it is a one-in-a-million arts center.
View is dedicated to making the visual and performing arts an integral and accessible part of the lives of residents and visitors of the Adirondacks, inspired by and reflecting the beauty of the natural environment.
Enjoy exhibitions of regional and national interest and impact, with a special emphasis on presentation of the work of living artists, as well as workshops and classes, public performances, lectures,
and other activities for personal enrichment and involvement.
View serves as a catalyst to encourage the creative spirit that has long been an Adirondack tradition.

Diesel and gasoline engines may have replaced steam, but Old Forge Lake Cruises and Raquette Lake Navigation Company are keeping the historic waterway journeys alive in the Central Adirondacks.
Modeled after their namesakes, the Clearwater follows the steamers’ old route through the first four lakes of the Fulton Chain, while the W.W. Durant cruises Raquette Lake, the largest natural lake in the Adirondacks.
Both operations’ narrated cruises point out historic points of interest and great camps, as well as share the history and folklore of this unique region.
Take a journey to a bygone era and experience first-hand the history and character that built this region. Open Memorial Day to Labor Day.

From Watertown, take state Route 12 south to Lowville, then turn right onto south State Street and continue onto state Route 12 south. Turn left onto east Main Street in Port Leyden. Follow to Pearl Street and turn right. Take the first left onto Moose River Road. Follow to state Route 28 north and turn left. Follow into Old Forge and Main Street.

By Grace E. Johnston, NNY Living