Christmas Lights

Nothing shines Christmas cheer on neighborhoods quite like holiday lights. But a leisurely drive can turn into a scavenger hunt for the biggest and brightest displays.

Yet, it’s difficult believing we are getting so close to Christmas, as temperatures remain in the 60’s, and last week’s snow melted away… but Christmas lights are everywhere in our small village.

It’s officially the most wonderful time of the year. Main Street was flooded with holiday spirit as hundreds flocked to the Holiday Village Stroll, I decided to walk the less-traveled path, the Christmas-lit one. Tonight, with some fall-like temps, was the perfect time to check out some spectacular homes. Take a peak at my favorites:

Happy Holidays!

New Trails in Lake Placid

The Uihlein Foundation in Lake Placid has opened a four-mile trail system on the 940-acre Heaven Hill Farmhouse property on Bear Cub Lane.

The new Heaven Hill Trails augment the popular Henry’s Woods Trail System, about five miles of trails on the Heaven Hill property that opened in 2009. Both trail networks are open to walking, skiing, mountain biking, snowshoes, but not motorized nor equestrian use.

There are three sets of trails in the new Heaven Hill Trails System. Most follow long established farm or woods roads and intersect with other trails to add variety.

  • The 1 1/2-mile Old Orchard Loop begins in a wooded setting, then heading westerly over gently rolling terrain, one enters a field that was used to pasture the Uihlein’s prize winning Jersey cows. The trail loops around the edges of the field, past and among the remaining trees of the old apple orchard. There are views into the High Peaks Wilderness on the return to the trailhead.
  • The Bear Cub Loop is a woodland route with very little terrain change headed east from the trailhead. The basic outer loop is 1 1/2 miles in length with the option of taking any one of five cross-trails to modify the distance.
  • The Big Field Loop has moderate ups and downs. It heads west from the trailhead and then swings north to the edge of the Big Field with views of the farm. The trail returns to the trail head through woodlands, making the loop distance .9 miles.

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    Views from the Big Field Loop

We walked all trails on a sunny afternoon. Really enjoyable, especially with the views of the High Peaks in the background.

A Walk on the Long Side

We have spent these past weeks experimenting the longer hikes, first because we wanted to know how fit we are, and second, because there aren’t many 46ers left that are close enough.

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Dial (front) and Nippletop (back)

For example, the last week of November was spent hiking Sawteeth (14 miles), then Dial and Nippletop (15 miles), and Marshall (18 miles) to finish. The preceding week led us to Nye and Street. Incredible hikes, and at the same time, so relaxing. Nobody around, except for the occasional chipmunk or partridge taking off a few steps from us.

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On the way back to Avalanche Pass

Next targets among the 46ers include Colvin and Blake, and the lesser-known and more remote peaks, such as Seward, Seymour and Santanoni. Look for more posts to come.