Hiking – or a Nice Walk in the Woods – in Bolton Landing, NY

One of the most popular requests at the Bolton Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center is for hiking information. The Chamber office maintains quite a few maps for hiking and biking trails around Lake George and the surrounding mountains. The Lake George Land Conservancy has a wonderful array of maps for conservancy lands and their well-maintained trails around Lake George.  The LGLC office is very near the Chamber, at 4905 Lake Shore Drive, or you can check out www.lglc.org for maps and information. For their 25th anniversary on Friday, July 5, 2013, the LGLC is sponsoring a free Hike-a-Thon with simultaneous guided hikes at each of the parks and preserves – complete with helicopter photography! A great way to get to know what hikes and trails are available, and where they are. The main question is still: how do you define a “hike”? For myself, a rather low-key non-athlete, I like something on the order of a nice walk in the woods, preferably near some water, on a trail that a four-wheeler could navigate. Meaning, I will likely not get lost. And, I’d rather not work too hard or even break a sweat (or at least not often), thank you very much, and be home in time for dinner.  I’m happy to leave the stunning views available at the top of the mountain trails to people who really deserve them – those who are willing to “hike” to the top to see them. I’ll just saunter along, breathing in the wonderful woodland air, enjoying the birdsong, the crickets, the sound of a stream, the occasional beaver smacking his or her tail on the water, and listening to the leaves rustle in the breeze. If you have children and want to bring them along, Up Yonda Farm and Environmental Education Center in Bolton Landing has lovely groomed trails of varying lengths, none over a mile, as well as a lot of activities for children (and their adults). Up Yonda also has a spectacular view of Lake George. One of the most popular hikes in Bolton Landing  is the Cat and Thomas Mountain Trail – both Cat and Thomas share a trail for almost a mile, then branch off, and there are even alternative descents. The Thomas trail follows an old logging road for a while, and then gets serious with larger rocks and occasional washouts. There is an alternate entrance to the trail at Edgecomb Pond/Finkle Road – that’s the trail I’ll be on – it goes by the pond and then along a feeder stream before it starts getting serious – although if you stick with it for a while, you will be rewarded with another lovely pond higher up, or you can join in with the Cat and Thomas Mountain trails. There are two easy trails at Amy’s Park on Padanarum Road, off North Bolton Road, which is just off Route 11 before it joins 9N. (Route 11 is an entrance to I 87 at Exit 24.) Padanarum Road will also take you to a Bike-or-Hike trail at Wardsboro Road, which runs a little over six miles. Luckily, there are so many trails near Bolton that every kind of hiker, from walkers-in-sneakers to climbers-with-gear, can be satisfied and never get bored. And many trails are even reasonable enough for mountain bikers, snowshoes and cross-country skiers in the winter. Most trails allow dogs on leash, as long as their people clean up after them – leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, a sense of peace, and some lovely memories.

For the dedicated non-hikers among us, if you want to see a very nice view of Lake George, there is a very nice scenic pull-off at Exit 22 on I 87, as well as a drive up the Veteran’s Memorial Highway on Prospect Mountain in Lake George Village. We simply live in a gorgeous place!

So – how do you define “hike”? Sweat or no sweat? A walk in the woods? There is every kind of trail to suit your desires in Bolton Landing on beautiful Lake George!   Penelope Jewell  ]]>