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New York's Adirondack North Country
Exploring the East's Great Inland Island

Adirondack Map Where is the Adirondack North Country? Well, like we said earlier, it's a state of mind as much as it is a place on a map. Still, we paddlers can't ignore geography, can we? So here goes.

Start at Peeble's Island, in the Hudson River north of Albany, and head west on the Mohawk River-Erie Canal until you reach Three Rivers, just beyond the western end of Oneida Lake. Now point your bow north and head down the Oswego River. When Lake Ontario opens before you, hang a right and hug the eastern shore until you reach the head of the St. Lawrence River at Cape Vincent.

Now go east with the big river along the international border. Canada is on your left. The United States is on your right. When your reach Akwesasne (the St. Regis Indian Reservation), pull your boat out of the water and catch a ride with someone driving east to Rouses Point, on Lake Champlain. Once there, launch your boat and paddle south along the hundred-mile length of the lake. The morning sun will light the summits of the Adirondack High Peaks to your west. Evening will bring a touch of fire to the tops of the Green Mountains of Vermont in the east.

After you pass the Drowned Lands, leave the outlet of South Bay on your right and enter the Champlain Canal. It will take you back to the Hudson River at Fort Edward, just below Rogers Island. Go with the flow on the Hudson. Forty miles downriver, you'll see Peeble's Island on your right. And you'll have circumnavigated the Adirondack North Country. It's an inland island of forest and peak, of river, bog and lake—and it's located right on the doorstep of North America's largest city.

Rushing Water

It's also home to the Adirondack Park, a six-million-acre patchwork quilt of public and private land that was created by an act of the state legislature in 1892. Taken as a whole, the 2.6 million acres of state-owned land in the Park is the largest forest preserve in the United States east of the Mississippi. It's also a paradise for paddlers. Nineteenth-century writer E.R. Wallace christened it the "Venice of America," and he wasn't too far wrong. Looking for big lakes? There's Lake Ontario in the west and Lake Champlain in the east, not to mention Lake George, the largest body of water entirely within the Adirondack Park. Do you prefer more intimate environments? A glance at a map will show you hundreds of smaller lakes, ponds, and bogs—and the beavers are always making more! Or would your rather paddle moving water? No problem. Whether you prefer the placid oxbows of the Raquette above Tupper Lake or the white-knuckle thrills of the Class V drops on the Black River below Watertown, you're sure to find what your looking for.
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And what happens when you're tired of paddling? Take a hike! The Adirondack Mountains are a cross-border salient of the Canadian Shield. Some of the oldest rock in the world can be seen here. The Adirondack High Peaks—New York's loftiest mountains—rise to a climax at the summit of 5,340-foot-high Mount Marcy, and there are forty-five more peaks over 4,000 feet. On the water or off, the Adirondack North Country has something for everyone.




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Adirondack Guide and all pictures and drawings within are
Copyright © 2001 by Verloren Hoop Productions. All rights reserved.
Written by Tamia Nelson and Farwell Forrest








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