Covering over 6.1 million acres, Adirondack Park is larger than Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, Glacier and the Great Smoky Mountains National Parks combined. With your PC-12 you can fly into thirteen airports in the park that have 2,500 feet of runway or more, whether the surface is turf, asphalt or gravel, and essentially step right into this wonderful outdoor adventure.
While you may be reading this as you’re flying out to Nantucket or another island off the coast, Adirondack Park offers the perfect complement to the sand, ocean, and hot sun. Luscious green forests, crystal clear streams and rolling mountains await you, as do numerous golf courses, hiking trails and fascinating places to explore. Here are examples to whet your appetite and help you access and enjoy the many opportunities this great park has to offer.
Fishing is plentiful in the Adirondacks. Although it is on the outskirts of the park, Lake George’s thirty-two miles of crystal clear water with year-round fishing ensures its place on the list. While lake trout and salmon are “lazy” during the midsummer months, the many warm, shallow bays and narrows are good for largemouth and smallmouth bass, northern pike and pickerel. The best yet: 300+ islands, many available for camping. Fly into Ticonderoga Municipal Airport off the northern shore or Floyd Bennett Memorial Airport on the southern end of the lake, and you’re pretty much there. And, if you prefer not to rough it in between outings with the fish, the Sagamore in Bolton Landing (left) is likely your place to stay.
If you’re hardwired for golf greens no matter where you are, Saranac Inn Golf & Country Club (right) is worth a look. It was named one of the “best places to play” by Golf Digest in 2010. (There should be a category for “best views” while playing golf.) Nearby, the Point Resort may be the most luxurious getaway in the park. It traces back to the Adirondacks “great camps” around Saranac Lake which wealthy families, including the Rockefellers, Posts, Baches and Guggenheims, built in the early 20th Century to spend quality time with family and friends.
Keene Valley offers some of the best hiking. With an exclusive but understated feeling, this area is an open invitation to see the highest peaks of the Adirondacks, stroll along countless streams and waterfalls, and reconnect with the simple pleasures in life. Fly into Marcy Field in Keene for the most direct and easiest way to get there. Keep in mind it’s only 2,400 feet of turf, do-able in your PC-12 but not in jets of similar size. Some private organizations in that area, like the Ausable Club, offer a nice mix of the Adirondacks and your favorites: golf, tennis, swimming, lawn bowls, hiking, and fishing.
Old Forge, surrounded by beautiful lakes and rivers, is known for whitewater rafting, canoeing and kayaking against a backdrop of scenic wilderness including deer, otters, beavers and Great Blue Herons. It also is the western-most entry/exit point to the Northern Forest Canoe Trail which runs from Old Forge to Fort Kent, ME. To get to Old Forge you may be able to fly into the town’s private airport, NK26; otherwise, the Adirondack Regional Airport is your best option.