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7/19/2020 8:52 am  #1


the border

Just read in the Buffalo News that Representative Brian Higgins (Buffalo area guy) thinks the border will remain closed until the end of the year.  Whether that is just one guys' speculation, a growing consensus (if I were Canada I think I would want the border to remain closed), or the right thing to do can be debated, but how sad it makes me cannot. 

I take one, maybe two trips per year, usually just 4-day outings.  But I daydream about the trips for months in advance.  When one trip ends, I've had enough of being there, but by the time I reach Toronto I'm already daydreaming about the next trip.  For once I have the vacation time needed.  I have reservations in place for a rare 5-day trip.  This whole thing stinks. 

 

7/19/2020 9:34 am  #2


Re: the border

there is a "make america great again " flag with donald trump`s name on it,, flying out front of a rock lake cottage,,  time and place for everything?

 

7/19/2020 11:36 am  #3


Re: the border

Ugh.  Definitely a time and place for everything, Swede.  US Political slogans in Canada = Wrong time and wrong place.  

     Thread Starter
 

7/20/2020 5:13 am  #4


Re: the border

From a fellow American, don't plan on canoeing again in Canada until next spring at the earliest.  Frankly I don't blame them for wanting us out. Sucks I know but as the saying goes, this too shall pass.  I have just taken trips closer to home. Places I haven't been in years and new areas that I have been meaning to go to.


Justa guy that loves to canoe camp with his dog.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRuOcIgt_VJIRfkZES0GJLQ
 

7/20/2020 11:22 pm  #5


Re: the border

MooseWhizzer Dave wrote:

Just read in the Buffalo News that Representative Brian Higgins (Buffalo area guy) thinks the border will remain closed until the end of the year.  Whether that is just one guys' speculation, a growing consensus (if I were Canada I think I would want the border to remain closed), or the right thing to do can be debated, but how sad it makes me cannot. 

I take one, maybe two trips per year, usually just 4-day outings.  But I daydream about the trips for months in advance.  When one trip ends, I've had enough of being there, but by the time I reach Toronto I'm already daydreaming about the next trip.  For once I have the vacation time needed.  I have reservations in place for a rare 5-day trip.  This whole thing stinks. 

 
Go to the Adirondacks. As much as I'm looking forward to my first trip into Algonquin, I really miss the ADKs. I usually go 2 or 3 times a year. There's some pretty good paddling routes, and some really good hiking routes. Best thing is, you don't have to book in advance.

 

7/21/2020 11:55 am  #6


Re: the border

I should have mentioned, if you do choose to check out the ADKs and need any planning advice, I can help.

 

7/21/2020 12:51 pm  #7


Re: the border

Thanks for that offer - I appreciate it.  Not sure what to do....still sad, but if ADK looks viable for me I'll definitely PM you. 

     Thread Starter
 

7/21/2020 1:45 pm  #8


Re: the border

MooseWhizzer Dave wrote:

Thanks for that offer - I appreciate it.  Not sure what to do....still sad, but if ADK looks viable for me I'll definitely PM you. 

 
Just pick whatever day you had planned for Algonquin and go. 

The beauty of the Adirondacks is you don't need to book anything. The paddling routes aren't as extensive as what you'll find in Algonquin, but in my opinion, the mountains more than make up for it.

That said the 90 miler from Old Forge to Saranac Lake (or sections thereof) is a trip definitely worth doing. They run it as a race every year in September, but it would be one heck of a trip to do at a more leisurely pace with free backcountry camping all along the route.

https://www.adirondackexplorer.org/stories/a-classic-challenge



https://i.ibb.co/SJ7cTfC/nb90miler-98511.jpg

 

7/21/2020 3:09 pm  #9


Re: the border

JoeScmoe wrote:

The beauty of the Adirondacks is you don't need to book anything. The paddling routes aren't as extensive as what you'll find in Algonquin, but in my opinion, the mountains more than make up for it.

I was considering an Adirondack trip some years ago but eventually opted out founding that most of the lakes are heavily developed and motor boat traffic is extensive. I wonder if I was wrong?
 

 

7/21/2020 4:10 pm  #10


Re: the border

EddyTurn wrote:

JoeScmoe wrote:

The beauty of the Adirondacks is you don't need to book anything. The paddling routes aren't as extensive as what you'll find in Algonquin, but in my opinion, the mountains more than make up for it.

I was considering an Adirondack trip some years ago but eventually opted out founding that most of the lakes are heavily developed and motor boat traffic is extensive. I wonder if I was wrong?
 

Here's my experience:

If you go on the major lakes close to the major towns like Lake Placid and Lake George, you'll see motor traffic that approaches, but is still less than an Ontario cottage country lake (maybe Lake George is the exception). The large lakes that allow motor boats away from the major towns will see quite a bit less traffic... Similar to what I saw when I was on Kioshkokwi last Tuesday.

I figure the reason for the lesser traffic is the jetsetter luxury crowd we see in our cottage country isn't drawn to the Adirondacks. Those people from NYC choose the Hamptons and Cape Cod instead. Those that go to the Adirondacks are there for the nature.

There are areas like the St Regis Canoe area where motors are outlawed. Combining that area with the Saranac Lakes Wild Forest would give you quite a bit of good paddling similar to what you'd get in Algonquin. As well there are countless backcountry lakes in the many designated wilderness areas where motors are forbidden. The thing you'll find in the Adirondacks though is that there aren't as many opportunities to link lakes in a lot of the wilderness areas as there are in Algonquin.

The difference though, is you can base camp in certain areas and have some hiking experiences you cannot get in Ontario. Many of the mountains have the same vertical relief you'd see in the Rockies. Some are above the treeline.

 

7/21/2020 5:46 pm  #11


Re: the border

OP, bear in mind if you do decide on an ADK trip that New York state has a 14 day quarantine rule for many states. Not sure where your from but there are a few canoeing opportunities in the UP of Michigan, some well known, others not so much. PM me if you need info. I'm not familiar with it at all but I heard Maine is nice as well. Then there's always the boundry waters, but that will be super busy with the border closed.

Last edited by dschult2 (7/21/2020 5:47 pm)


Justa guy that loves to canoe camp with his dog.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRuOcIgt_VJIRfkZES0GJLQ
 

7/21/2020 10:26 pm  #12


Re: the border

Thanks, JoeScmoe, for reminding of St. Regis - it could be the ticket! Definitely bits going round round round on the local pond. Any advise on how to combine this area with Saranac Lakes Forest for 7-10 day trip? We are looking for a fortnighter with some lay-overs. Major objective - remoteness, portages under 2-3km (we have a small kid in the boat) and no w/w above easy Cl 2.

 

7/21/2020 11:39 pm  #13


Re: the border

I've never actually paddled St Regis, but have paddled the Saranac Lakes Wild Forest area. Both are side by side with portage routes joining the two.

You won't get Algonquin remoteness in the SLWF as you'll see paddlers from the two area campgrounds daytripping through but it's still quite nice.

Use this site as a resource. https://gisservices.dec.ny.gov/gis/dil/

Turn on the layers for trails (select all) and turn on the selections under Land Based activities. As you zoom in on the area of the SRCA and the SLWF area the trails and campsites will appear. You can build your own adventure from there.

Still, depending on how much you're looking to tour around, you'll be hard pressed to stretch your trip over these areas out to a week or more.

I think when in Rome, you should do as the Romans and set aside time for some classic ADK hikes. If it were me, I'd plan 3-4 days paddling then do 2-3 days hiking with maybe a base camp on an easy access lake (Follensby Clear Pond comes to mind) driving to day hike destinations. There's so many awesome options. If you're already in the Saranac Lake area, you might want to try to sample (or complete) the Saranac 6 challenge. They are easy to moderate hikes. Some do get busy (Ampersand comes to mind, so knock them off early).

Also, don't be thrown off by how they call some lakes ponds. I don't know why they do that...

https://www.saranaclake.com/saranac-lake-6er
Baker (2,452 feet)
St. Regis (2,874 feet)
Scarface (3,054 feet)
Ampersand (3,353 feet)
Haystack (2,878 feet)
McKenzie (3,822 feet)

 

7/22/2020 5:24 am  #14


Re: the border

Another difference between St. Regis and Algonquin is the campsites are hidden back in the woods away from the lakefront.  You get little to no view of the lake from your site and less wind on a hot summer evening.

There are a boatload of state managed boat-in campsites on the Saranac Lakes but, unfortunately, those are fully booked through August.  I would have at least a small concern with capacity/availability of first come/first served sites in the region - less concern in St. Regis as portages keep the crowds away, but greater concern in the easier accessed lakes (really just like Algonquin, in that sense).

Joe Schmoe is spot on about the hiking being excellent in the ADKs (although I don't think he's been to Colorado where they count how many 12,000+ foot peaks you've climbed vs. how many 4,000+ foot peaks in the ADKs).  The mountains are substantially different - the Rockies are often snow-capped, have more loose rock and are geologically immature compared to the hundreds of millions of years of weathering and glaciation that the ADKs have sustained. Nonetheless, the hiking is excellent, many opportunities for swimming holes, waterfalls, etc.

You may end up looking at some of the charming motels that dot the area - you can get a pretty cheap place on a lake in relative comfort as well.  If you get skunked trying to find a campsite that would be a possible plan B. 

It's not Algonquin, but it's a nice substitute in the unlikely event of a meteorite impact or global pandemic forces you to change your plans.  

 

7/22/2020 7:18 am  #15


Re: the border

PaPaddler wrote:

Another difference between St. Regis and Algonquin is the campsites are hidden back in the woods away from the lakefront.  You get little to no view of the lake from your site and less wind on a hot summer evening.

There are a boatload of state managed boat-in campsites on the Saranac Lakes but, unfortunately, those are fully booked through August.  I would have at least a small concern with capacity/availability of first come/first served sites in the region - less concern in St. Regis as portages keep the crowds away, but greater concern in the easier accessed lakes (really just like Algonquin, in that sense).

Joe Schmoe is spot on about the hiking being excellent in the ADKs (although I don't think he's been to Colorado where they count how many 12,000+ foot peaks you've climbed vs. how many 4,000+ foot peaks in the ADKs).  The mountains are substantially different - the Rockies are often snow-capped, have more loose rock and are geologically immature compared to the hundreds of millions of years of weathering and glaciation that the ADKs have sustained. Nonetheless, the hiking is excellent, many opportunities for swimming holes, waterfalls, etc.

You may end up looking at some of the charming motels that dot the area - you can get a pretty cheap place on a lake in relative comfort as well.  If you get skunked trying to find a campsite that would be a possible plan B. 

It's not Algonquin, but it's a nice substitute in the unlikely event of a meteorite impact or global pandemic forces you to change your plans.  

 
I've been to Colorado many times... though I haven't done a lot of hiking there. I love the Rockies (really love the Rockies) but the ADKs give a nice balance of being able to paddle, hike, and swim. There's not a lot of lakes in CO, and those few are cold! I've swam in the Colorado River down in Glenwood Springs which is lower elevation than where you'll find the 14'ers. It was still freezing. Also I give the ADKs special consideration because I can get there on a tank of gas.

 

7/22/2020 3:09 pm  #16


Re: the border

Here are the official state maps to SRCA and SLWF. You can see where they join at the south of St Regis and the north of Saranac.

https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/lands_forests_pdf/mapstregis.pdf

https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/regions_pdf/mapsaranaclakeswf2.pdf

In my SLWF paddles I've always seen lots of open campsites... Probably around half. I'd expect the same or better in St Regis though I've never been on a long weekend.

As a last resort, you're allowed to camp anywhere that's at least 150ft from the water or nearest trail.

 

7/22/2020 4:53 pm  #17


Re: the border

Thanks GoeScmoe and Papaddler! The picture is getting more clear now though less encouraging . I'm not enthusiastic about hiking ADK with 5 year old kid in tow and getting into motel would totally ruin an adventure. Does anyone have experience canoeing Whitney Wilderness?

 

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