Update: July 4th, 2004 Holiday
Adirondack Mountains, New York

We spent a couple days driving from northern Indiana to Wilmington, New York in the Adirondack Mountains. Over the years, we've found it's a good idea to stay in one place during the July 4th holidays to avoid all the traffic. The North Pole Resort was a perfect choice. We were parked in the trees, so we used their cable modem for Internet access.


Lake Placid

We decided to explore the area before everyone arrived for the holiday weekend. Our adventure began with a drive along the Ausable River. The river runs along the highway where fly fisherman can be seen fishing in the rapids. We spent some time shopping in the historic downtown area of Lake Placid. This was the site for the 1932 and 1980 Olympic Games.

Lake PlacidLake Placid


larry on boardwalkAdirondack Visitor Center

We did some backroad driving and ended up at the Adirondack Visitor Center.

First, we explored the Visitor Center. The exhibits were very informative. We particularly enjoyed their discussion of wetlands and a comparison of marshes, bogs, and swamps. Learn more at Wetlands Life Zone at enature. Although there were thunderstorms in the area and we could hear the thunder, we decided to take a hike on the Boreal Life Trail. The word "boreal" means north wind. Boreal soils are sandy and low in nutrients.


Boreal Life Trail

This 1.3 mile loop took us through a forest, along the shore of Barnum Pond, and across a boardwalk. We enjoyed photographing mushrooms, pitcher plants, and wild flowers. With bad weather threatening, we were the only ones of the trail!


The walk began in a forest filled with beech, sugar maple, hemlock, pine, tamarack, fir, and spruce trees. This moist forest was filled with a wide variety of mushrooms (above left) as well as mosses and lichen. Many could be found in the bed of needles as well as on old logs. From mosquitoes and butterflies to ants and flies, insects could be found everywhere along the trail. The dragonfly above (right) is a Swift Long-winged Skimmer and was found along the 1600 foot boardwalk.

Boreal Life Trail

The photo above is one of our favorite locations on the trail.

Annette sketchingAnnette took time out to sketch while Larry took photographs.

This marsh is at the edge of the Barnum Pond which was named after the circus magnate P.T. Barnum who enjoyed visiting the area. Birds could be heard and seen in every direction. We could also see evidence of animals such as deer and beaver.

The Northern Pitcher Plant was in bloom (below left). The Bog Laurel (below right) could be found along the boardwalk.

pitcher plantboreal flowers


Moose Lake

On our way back to Wilmington, we decided to take a side-trip to Moose Lake (photo below). We figured maybe moose might be hanging out on the shore. Although it was a beautiful lake, we didn't see any moose; actually moose are rarely seen in this area but are prevalent in regions to the East.

moose lake, ny



Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 7/04.