This weekend within the Adirondacks: Get pleasure from spring recreation – fastidiously


Lake Abanakee in Indian Lake. Archival photo of the day by Mr. Wakiki

Although nights will still be cold – mostly in the 30s – the weather is looking excellent for outdoor adventures.

Spring is a great opportunity to visit places that are typically crowded in summer, but it also comes with risks – for recreational sports, wildlife and natural resources. Make sure you plan for variable conditions at this time of year – peak temperatures are expected to stay in the mid-thirties for most of the weekend. Ice and snow remain at higher altitudes.

The mud season consultation continues. Now is the time to stick to lower, drier trails and avoid trails higher than about 2,500 feet, especially in the high peaks. Steep high trails can be damaged due to their thin floors.

Expect to hit mud everywhere, but give the delicate vegetation a break for now, especially at higher elevations. Ditto for the region’s mountain bike trails, which can be muddy and easily damaged at this time of year.

Ticks have been active and insect season has only just begun – dress appropriately and expect to encounter blackflies and ticks this weekend.

Rivers and streams flow at normal levels, other bodies of water run slightly above normal. The Hudson River is flowing at about 2,000 CFS and is expected to be about 4 1/2 feet at North Creek this weekend. The Raquette River flows about 7 feet at Piercefield. Lake Champlain is about 30 meters above Whitehall, which is about a foot from high tide.

Water temperatures mostly remain in the low to mid 40’s. Cold water protection is recommended for paddlers, as is a life jacket. DEC has started installing docks at boat docks. When launching a boat, be sure to follow the principles of “clean, drained and dry” to stop the spread of invasive species.

Skiing and snowboarding ended at Whiteface and Gore Mountain, where a record 146 days of skiing was set this season. The Whiteface Memorial Highway opens on Friday, May 20th.

And finally this week, a reminder to give wildlife some space – never feed, approach, or follow wild animals. Keep pets on a leash and practice the seven principles of Leave No Trace available online.