cross country skiing around
Lake Placid, New York, USA
Links + Info
This page last updated in December 2006.
There's a wide range of places to sleep around the Lake
Placid region. Here's some thoughts as of January 2006.
Mt Van Hoevenberg XC center is little over 6
miles from the main traffic light intersection of Lake Placid Village.
Cascade XC ski center is around 4 miles from
the main intersection, and the Cascade ski trails connect to the Mt Van
Hoevenberg trail network (also to the backcountry Jackrabbit Trail).
Backcountry skiing -- the most popular access
to the High Peaks area is from a road which turns off from Route 73 a
little more than 3 miles southeast from the main intersection.
Bobsled run and ski jumps are also in this
Trailside: There is some lodging on or very close
to the Cascade XC ski center trails.
Food: most of the grocery stores are on the northwest
side of the village, and most of the restaurants and snack shops are on
the main street in the village center.
Lift-served Downhill skiing at Whiteface is to the
northeast about 9 miles away.
to Avoid driving steep Hills
Because of the possibility of slippery road surfaces,
some drivers prefer lodging that will not require them to drive up or
down steep hills, in order to get to or from their favorite skiing places --
especially if their car does not have snow tires. If you're one of those
drivers, keep in mind:
long hill climb with some curves on Route 73
(north-bound), not far south and east of the Mt Van Hoevenberg
center, between Keene and the ski center (hill might
be 1200 vertical feet in 5 miles, including some substantial
sections with steepness grade around 7-8%) -- also some
wind-blown gentler sections alongside the Cascade Lakes.
rather steep hill climb (but not long) on Route 73
(north-bound) immediately south of the main traffic light of Lake Placid
village, intersection of Route 73 and Route 86. (hill
might be 80 vertical feet at a steepness grade around 9-10%)
rather steep hill climb (but not long) on Route 73
(north-bound) immediately north of the crossing of the Ausable River between
the cross-country ski centers and Lake Placid village, about 2 miles
southeast from the main intersection. (hill might be 50
vertical feet at a steepness grade around 10%)
hill climb on Route 73 (south-bound) immediately south of
the crossing of the Ausable River between the cross-country ski centers and
Lake Placid village, about 2 miles southeast from the main intersection.
(hill might be about a mile at a steepness grade around 6-7%)
long hill climb with a rather steep section on Route 73
(south-bound), south from Keene Valley toward Route 9 and the I-87 Northway.
(long climb might be around 500 vertical feet and 1.5 miles, and
one section might be 150 vertical feet in a quarter mile at a steepness grade of
around 10% or more)
on Route 86 between Wilmington and Jay there's a non-long
section of the east-bound climb with steepness grade around 6-7%, and there's a
non-long section of the east-bound climb with steepness grade around 6%
The measurements and steepness grades below
were calculated by approximate manual methods from using the DeLorme
TopoUSA 3.0 software.
For comparison, using these same methods to
estimate the big climb on the I-87 Northway from Lake George north up
toward Warrensburg yields about 460 vertical feet in 2.5 miles, for a
steepness grade between 3% and 4%. And I think I remember reading
somewhere that the maximum hill steepness permitted for a road to be
considered for inclusion in the U.S. federal Interstate highway system
is a steepness grade of 6%.
If you really really want to avoid having any hills steeper
than 6-7% grade between your lodging and the Mt Van Hoevenberg and Cascade
XC ski centers -- find a place within 3 miles north from Mt Van Ho center.
If you want to avoid having any hills steeper than 6-7% grade
between your lodging and the I-87 Northway to/from the south -- and
you're willing to drive an extra 36 miles to get home, starting northeast on Rt 86 through
Wilmington and Jay and Rt 9N to near Keeseville -- find a place on the main
street of Lake Placid village.
Anyway, the straightforward routes for driving between the Mt
Hoevenberg XC ski center and the I-87 Northway will include some hill
climb with steepness grade around 10%.
(though it might be possible to keep the hill
steepness under 8% grade by driving an extra 45 miles northeast from Keene on Rt
9N through Jay to near Keeseport.)
Once on the Northway south of Route 73, the hill steepness
grades are more like 4%. Something to think about when it starts snowing while
you're out skiing on the day you're driving home.
other places with lodging
some skiers we know stay in Keene or Jay or Keene Valley.
Keene is about 8 miles south and east from the Mt Van Ho center, with that
long hill in between.
some skiers stay much further south along the I-87 Northway,
like Warrensburg, Lake George, Queensbury, Glens Falls. This makes for a much
longer drive to the skiing in Lake Placid, but a shorter drive to/from home. It
makes it easier to also ski for a day at a XC ski center further south, such as
Garnet Hill, or maybe ski at Crandall Park in Glens Falls.
I've never seen much lodging available along the I-87
Northway between Warrensburg and the Route 73 exit.