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#9514 - 08/21/03 02:02 PM Lake Placid or North Conway?
MurphysLaw Offline

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 2308
Loc: Hudson Valley, NY
Hey gang,

So myself and Mrs "Law" are discussing our va-ca plans for this October (likely the first or 2nd week) and have narrowed our choices down to either Lake Placid or North Conway.
(There's also a place in Waterville Valley, but that seems like it's not "everywhere we want to be")

I've been to both areas in the past, but only in winter, so I was looking for some advice.
Which one would you choose, and why? Discuss.

First, which area in general would you think has more stuff overall to do?
(we're talking 'family vacation' for the most part, with plenty o' hiking, maybe biking and paddling, and one day o' climbing.)
Any specific hikes you'd suggest? And of course, good places to eat and grab a beer?

Next, for my one day of climbing, I'll likely need a guide; which guide service(s) and/or specific guides can you recommend?
(strat - Ed P at R&R is a given for Placid, ok? )

Now the good stuff: since I'll only have one day o' climbing, which cliff/crag would you suggest to maximize the climbing opportunities, and what are a few *must do* routes to try to hit?
I've never climbed rock in either area before.
(Lester - I know yer heart's in the right place, but please refrain from telling me all about the amazing 5.10d or outstanding .11c or "easy" .12a - the only way I'm getting up anything harder than maybe hard .9/easy .10 is with prussicks )

Beta me! and thanks in advance
climb on-
"Flailing?" "Flail on!"

#9515 - 08/21/03 02:15 PM Re: Lake Placid or North Conway? [Re: MurphysLaw]
strat Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/30/01
Posts: 4242
I am obviously partial to Lake Placid. But either one will be great.

If you do Conway and are going to hire a guide for a day ( think you must do the Whitney-Gilman Ridge and/or Moby Grape on Cannon. Obviously, hiking Mt Washington is good, the Franconia Ridge Trail is very pleasant too.

If you do LP and are going to hire Ed for a day ( then I am told that Hesitation on the Washbowl Cliff is a 5.8 that should not be missed or for an even bigger adirondack adventure The Diagonal on Wallface. You could do your lodging at R&R too as long as you didn't want a TV.

You and Cathy can do an ALC day by hiking up Noonmark (2.x miles one way with beautiful views) and then doing the 90ft routes on the summit crag. On a clear day, you will not be disappointed about this. Then you could paddle on Chapel Pond or Cascade Lakes to complete the three event ALC. On the way back to Placid for dinner, you could stop by RBL for beers

If you wanted to do a couple hours of climbing with Cathy, Emma, and murphdog, the Notch Mountain Slabs are a great little location for some mellow TR'ing in a great setting.

Day Hikes that won't disappoint: Trap Dike on Mt Colden***, Ridge Trail on Giant***, Eagle Slide on Giant**, Cascade and Porter***, Pitchoff Ridge Trail***, Gothics via Lake Road/Pyramid Peak (long hike)***, Big Slide via Brothers***.

While Placid is a nice town, I think you should consider it the epicenter for hiking and climbing, but if paddling is your thing, day tripping to some of the lakes in the central and western adirondacks is where it's at.

Dinner in the LP area, IMO, The Charcoal Pit offers the best Italian food in the area, although Fred will dispute that, I think. The place we had lunch at Dacks winter fest 2002 was about the best sandwhich I ever got in the area. The Hungry Trout has good food and is in a spectacular location.

Are you gonna bring the rugrat and murphdog?

#9516 - 08/21/03 02:39 PM Re: Lake Placid or North Conway? [Re: strat]
scottie_c Offline

Registered: 05/01/02
Posts: 284
Loc: NY
Both would be great.

I am partial to the Adirondacks because there is usually less people, beautiful views, free camping, and great climbing.

North Conway would be good if you wanted to do some shopping too. Cathedral and Whitehorse are both great, but there is a lot more in this area.

I highly recommend Inferno @ Whitehorse, a 5.8. You can do a 5.9 direct variation by linking up Hotter than Hell.

#9517 - 08/21/03 02:44 PM Re: Lake Placid or North Conway? [Re: strat]
pitfall Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/01/00
Posts: 1165
Loc: Albany
As far as Placid goes, it will be touristy that time of year, hell it is a tourist town every weekend for that matter. Leaf peepers everywhere.
There is hiking everywhere you turn, strat's noonmark suggestion is a good one, there are longer or shorter options depending on what you guys are looking for.
Paddling can be found near Saranac, only about 10-15 minutes away if the mirror or lake placid isn't your cup of tea.
Guides? Guides?, You won't need no stinking guides! I should be able to sneak away for a day by then, especially with some advance notice. I may not be as skilled as the guides, but tipping is not allowed and there will always be a full cooler at the end of the day.

#9518 - 08/21/03 03:37 PM Re: Lake Placid or North Conway? [Re: MurphysLaw]
Dizzy Offline

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 2177
Loc: Berkshires, MA and Ahlington, ...
I'm not so familiar with the Dacks so I'll spew anout North Conway.

It'll be very touristy at that time of year, it being prime foliage season. During the week though it shouldn't be too bad, though. There are a ton of restaurants all along Rt 16..The Moat brew pub is pretty goo, Delaney's, Horsefeathers, there a dynamite Indian restaurant the name of which escapes me.

Bring the bike!!!! You can go up to the trails where they hold 24 hours of Great Glen or pick up the trail map for the area at Red Jersey Cyclery in Bartlett. There's loads to do.

Hiking is everywhere. I'd recommend doing the Moat loop or the trip up Chocorua up the Champney Brook trail. Another is the loop up the Falling Water trail over Franconia Ridge.

Climbing...get the most bang for the buck and climb on Cathedral or Whitehorse. Guides I'd recommend are either Marc Chauvin or George Hurley. On Cathedral do RecomBeast 5.9, Bombardment 5.8, Still in Saigon5.8, 3 Birches(might be wet)5.8, Diedre 5.9, Fun House 5.7. On Witehorse do: Sliding Board 5.7, Hotter Than Hell/Inferno link up, 5.9, Lost Souls 5.10 which I KNOW you could do.

Now going,
I can handle reality in small doses, but as a lifestyle it's way too confining
-Lily Tomlin

#9519 - 08/21/03 11:03 PM Re: Lake Placid or North Conway? [Re: strat]
CrackBoy Offline

Registered: 02/06/02
Posts: 2435
Loc: Republic of Davis
i dunno about W-G. If you are climbing with cathy, i dont think she will handle it very well at all
Just Call me Mr. Enthusiasm

#9520 - 08/22/03 03:43 AM Re: A Little South of Lake Placid [Re: MurphysLaw]
fallenglass Offline

Registered: 08/01/03
Posts: 276
Loc: cornwall
chimney mountain and castle rock are easy family style hikes in the 'daks that have some bouldering opportunities along the way (if you want to sneak a little more climbing in). they are both short hikes, steep in spots and have nice summit views (my four year old was able to hike them on his own). they're not the high peaks, but they are fun for the whole family - and nobody will notice that you packed a pair of rock shoes. there's also nice paddling near by in indian lake (next to chimney mtn) and blue mountain lake (next to castle rock) - you can rent canoes right there if you need to.

i agree with strat that hesitation is a great climb - the washbowl cliff is a good choice because you can cram a bunch of climbs into your day (the weisner route, partition could be others) - the spider's web and chapel pond slabs are not far away too, so you don't have to waste your precious time driving around. there are also a ton of routes at poko, but they tend to be harder (FM and gamesmanship are classic moderates though)

i love the beaches in the 'daks - is it too late to swim in october?

#9521 - 08/22/03 11:16 AM Re: A Little South of Lake Placid [Re: fallenglass]
OffTheEdge Offline

Registered: 08/09/03
Posts: 129
Loc: Orono, ME
What's also nice about Chimney is that there are some great small caves to play around in. In eagle cave, across the small notch from the chimney stack, you can rap down maybe 60 ft. or so and climb out in only headlamps... it's fairly interesting. There are tons of caves to explore, none of which you can really get lost in.

If in Placid, you can also stop in the Mountaineer in Keene to get some cliff beta. By that time, many of the smaller crags will be prime for some climbing. You can find a ton of good routes at Moss Cliff on Whiteface Mtn and anywhere along route 73.

For a fun day hike, and to get you out of the high peaks superhighway, head just south on route 9 and go to Pharoah Mountain. It's absolutely gorgeous and a fun hike. According to Don Mellor in the 'dacks climbing guide "The Pharoah Wilderness are is on of the largest and most beautiful in the park". It's my favorite hike in the 'dacks.

At night, you can either stay in placid or head into Saranac "an all america" town.. whatever the hell that means.. but there are some nice places to get and grab a brew.

I have some paddling beta as well, but I've already been long-winded...

#9522 - 08/22/03 01:35 PM Re: Lake Placid is the winner!!!! (by default) [Re: OffTheEdge]
MurphysLaw Offline

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 2308
Loc: Hudson Valley, NY
Thanks to all for all the beta.

An update: It's gonna be Lake Placid.
(turns out all 3 places in NH were 100% booked)

Thanks Dizz - I'll use yer beta next year, I got so jazzed thinking about N Conway that we're gonna plan next year's va-ca for there.

OTE - I've done the Pharoh Mtn hike before (way way back in the day, when I was in the Boy Scouts - we used to hike in and camp up on top, or at the lean-tos at the lake) and I agree, it was beautiful, so that's a contender.

Keep the beta coming! Like Ross Perot used ta say "I'm all ears"
climb on-
"Flailing?" "Flail on!"

#9523 - 08/22/03 01:51 PM Re: Lake Placid is the winner!!!! (by default) [Re: MurphysLaw]
d-elvis Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/26/00
Posts: 3650
Loc: Central PA
"Boy scouts"???? don't you mean girl scouts?
"Marriage Survivor"

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