Cross Country Skiing, Snowshoeing and Ice Skating in Bolton Landing on Beautiful Lake George

medium_2216041652Janet Escott moved to Bolton Landing in 1997, after visiting here every summer with her family since 1980 – they all just loved it here! “Even when I lived in Arizona I came back here for the summer…” Janet also loves sailing, and used to work moving people’s yachts up and down the East Coast, “…and they paid me for it!” So Bolton Landing is a dream come true for Janet, who has also loved winter sports since she was a child. Her father, a medal-winning speed skater, had her on skates as soon as she could wsmall_4400220464alk, and did the same for Janet’s children – a son and two daughters. One of those daughters is now an avid hockey player in Vermont – her day job is being an attorney! Janet’s first introduction to cross country skiing came when, “a friend from Norway  strapped a pair of ancient cross country skis on my feet, and said, ‘Follow me!’ ” At the end of that first day Janet’s comment was, “People like doing this??” Well, with practice and some better equipment  Janet came to love it, and even taught cross country skiing at the Concord Hotel in Monticello, NY; and at High Point, a state park in New Jersey. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABolton Landing is a cross country skier’s paradise according to Janet – she skis on trails around Edgecomb Pond, Thomas Mountain, the Bolton Landing Conservation Park, and, “… out Padanarum Road there are so many trails that are not even marked – you can go all winter.” Janet and some of her friends also “bushwack”, which means to create/breaksmall_2219738954 new trails in promising woods. Janet always skis with her dog, Daisy, “I just don’t go where I can’t take my dog.” How about snow cover? “I ski when there is enough snow to cover the rocks – a minimum of 4 inches on most of the hiking trails, 5-6 inches is better.” (There are a LOT of rocks on some of the local hiking trails!) small_17639046And ice skating? “There is a gentleman who loves to play hockey – he plows the snow off the pond at the Conservation Park, and doesn’t mind if other people use the cleared area for figure skating.” This pond freezes fast in the winter, and stays safe for a long time. Of course when the ice is thick enough (5 inches or more) many people love to ski, skate, snowshoe and ice fish on Lake George. It used to be common that people would wait for the lake to freeze to get to their cabins on some of the islands – or to get off the islands, in some cases! One local man wrote a magazine article about being a year-around caretaker on one of the Lake George islands, and learning about the sounds the ice makes all season. When I asked her about snowshoeing, Janet said that was too much like work in her opinion, although there are a lot of people in medium_11894551826Bolton Landing who love it – many have hand-made snowshoes. You can see a wonderful selection of antique and hand-made snowshoes at Black Bass Antiques on Lakeshore Drive in Bolton – they are open on weekends all winter. Janet said that when the snow is very deep, she looks for the snowshoe trails and says, “Thank you!! Thank you!!” because the newly broken snow shoe trails are perfect for cross country skiing in deep snow. What are the best things about cross country skiing, skating and snowshoeing in Bolton Landing? The absolute beauty and the silence of the winter woods, and you are not contributing to pollution of any kind: there is no noise, gas fumes, disturbing the wildlife or even annoying the neighbors! What is your favorite winter sport? Did you ever do a winter sport like skating or cross country skiing as a child that you might like to take up again now? Penelope Jewellmedium_4279675117]]>