The Lake George Area offers up beautiful views all four seasons so don’t let the snow stop you from taking them in this winter. While some require a hike with appropriate gear (snowshoes, spikes, warm clothing) some of the best views can be accessed by car. Not seeing your favorite spot on this list? Share it with us!
Beach Road & the Lake George Southern Basin
The perfect first stop on your next trip to the Lake George Area. You can take this view in from Beach Road in Lake George Village by Million Dollar Beach. Accessible by car, this view doesn’t require any hiking and you can look north for miles of lake and rolling Adirondack Mountains.
2 & 3. 2 for 1 at Crane Mountain
A challenging winter hike that rewards with not one, but two great winter views! Make sure you bring snowshoes and spikes as this hike is steep with boulders and ladders that you’ll have to climb up. This hike is a 3.2 mile loop with a shorter and steep path one way and a longer but not as steep trail the other way that brings you along a beautiful spring fed mountain ridge pond on the way down; a perfect spot to take a break and take in the view.
Skiers and riders should head to Gore Mountain not just for great skiing and riding but beautiful views for miles. With four peaks you’ll get Adirondack vistas in every direction with snowcapped trees surrounding you at each peak.
Step out on frozen Brant Lake and you’re instantly surrounded by unforgettable 360-degree views. Walk around the lake and see ice fishers and snowmobiles out every weekend. Spend an entire day on the lake for the annual Brant Lake Winter Carnival! Make sure the lake is completely frozen over and safe before you venture out!
This luxury resort is nestled on its own island on Lake George and offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Whether you’re staying for the week or dropping by for a cocktail or meal don’t miss a walk by the lake. If you time your visit right in the late afternoon you’ll witness the suns rays hitting the mountains on the east side of the lake as the moon rises over the same mountains. A magnificent site year round!
While your skiing and riding at West Mountain during the day you’ll find sprawling views to the West of Queensbury and Glens Falls with mountains in the far distance. At night (yes there is night skiing at West Mountain) you’ll see lights from nearby Glens Falls.
While some restaurants shut down for the season there are still so many places to choose from if you know where to look. If you want to stay right in Lake George try The Garrison on Beach Road. The great menu, cozy interior and drink selection will have you lingering for hours. Craft beer lovers should head to 163 Tap Room on Canada Street where you’ll find 16 rotating regional craft beer on tap, good food and some seriously in-the-know bartenders and wait staff. They’ll answer your questions on the beer and the area. Shopping at the Outlets? Swing by Sammy D’s Café who ranked #7 on Yelp’s Top 100 Places to Eat in the US for 2017. All their breads and baked goods are homemade and they roast their own meats. So good!
Heading to North Creek for some skiing and riding at Gore Mountain? Try Basil & Wicks for great food and drinks, live music and a great atmosphere. Fancy a nice glass of wine and some small plates? Check out BarVino, an Adirondack wine bar with a NYC twist. To warm up with hot chocolate or coffee and baked good try Café Sarah in downtown North Creek
For a full list of places to eat in the Lake George Area go here.
2. From cozy cabins to resorts with all the amenities there is something for everyone.
Hit the slopes at Gore Mountain and enjoy a relaxing stay at the Copperfield Inn on Main Street in North Creek. You’ll love the amenities and the location only minutes from Gore Mountain and walking distance to many great North Creek restaurants and stores.
Skiing at West Mountain? Stay at the Queensbury Hotel in downtown Glens Falls and take their shuttle to West Mountain for a day, or night, of skiing. It’s gorgeous architecture, grand lobby, indoor pool, restaurant, and lounge will pull your right in.
Looking for a cozy cabin where the entire family can stay? The Summerwind Lodge sits on the shores of Lake George in Bolton. This lodge can accommodate groups of up to 14 and pets are allowed!
Find a list of everything from cabins to resorts in the Lake George Area here.
3. There is something going every weekend here, choose which is best for you!
February in the Lake George Area means Winter Carnival time! From February 4th-26th every weekend is packed with events and activities for all ages and every Saturday you’ll find s’mores and fireworks at Shepard Park.
We love getting outside in the winter and the abundance of ice and fire bars in the Lake George Area help warm us up. Every Saturday through February 18th you’ll find fire bars, cocktails and delicious food at Winterfest at the Inn at Erlowest. Head to Fort William Henry February 10-12 for the Polar Ice Bar.
Country fans should book their trips the weekend of February 16th for the Brantley Gilbert Concert at the Glens Falls Civic Center. The next night you can head to West Mountain for Fire on the Mountain, a Fireworks and Torchlight Parade complete with live music, great drinks and food specials.
Families looking to get away for a weekend of winter fun shuld head to Silver Bay YMCA for their Adirondack Winter Fun weekend February 17th-20th. Make sure you bring your ice skates, snowshoes and cross-country skis!
4. There are multiple ski mountains and each offer something very different.
Looking for a full day, weekend or week of skiing? Head to Gore Mountain in North Creek. With four peaks and 115 trails you won’t get tired of any terrain. For even more trails and an ever wider range of activities including Nordic skiing and snowshoeing head to the North Creek Ski Bowl at the foot of Little Gore Mountain. Families, beginners and freestylers should head to West Mountain in Queensbury where 30 trails offer up everything from easy to expert terrain. Book a lesson with one of their instructors or hit the terrain park which offers up the longest jump in the Northeast! At night the lights turn on and you can ski until 9pm Monday through Saturday. Free skiing? We’ve got that too. The Dynamite Hill Recreation Area has a rope tow, night skiing and snowmaking on their drop of about 65 feet. You’ll also find cross country ski trails, snowshoeing, a tubing hill, skate rink, and warming hut at the recreation area.
5. It’s not just about skiing and riding in the winter, there are plenty of things to do!
Whether you want to round out your ski trip with more activities or aren’t a skier or rider, there are plenty of options. Are you indoorsy? No problem. Spend the day shopping at the Factory Outlets of Lake George and follow it with a wine tasting at Adirondack Winery. If you’re really looking to escape winter stay at the Great Escape Lodge and Indoor Waterpark and you won’t need to go outside for days. Choose from four places within the lodge to dine at, spend the day in the indoor waterpark, hit the spa, and wrap up the day relaxing in your luxury suite. Click here for a full list of winter indoor activities.
If you’re in need of some fresh air, there are endless opportunities for you. For a range of activities including snowshoeing, cross country skiing, ice skating, and fat biking check out one of the many parks in Queensbury. Want to go sledding? If you have your own tube head to the Lake George Rec Center where you’ll find a steep hill with plenty of speed. If you need to rent check out the tubing at West Mountain and Tubby Tubes.
The Lake George Area is the perfect place for ski days, ski weekends and week-long ski vacations. Whether it’s the upgraded lifts and fabulous night skiing at West Mountain, the slopes of the legendary Hickory Ski Center or the unique four peaks at Gore Mountain boasting over 4,000 vertical feet, skiing in Warren County has something for every skier. Looking for après-ski activities or something to do while everyone else in your group is skiing? We’ve got you covered.
While friends and family are hopping moguls, grinding rails and enjoying some fresh powder, those that don’t ski have plenty of options to fill their day. Outdoor options are abound with tubing, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, hiking, and biking. If getting out in the snow on something other than downhill skis is your style, you’ll love the tubing option at West Mountain open both day and night. Tubby Tubes, located just five minutes from Lake George, offers fantastic tubing weekends and holiday weeks. At Gore Mountain, you’ll find their extensive Nordic Center offers trails with snowmaking and grooming for all levels of cross-country skiers plus snowshoe trails. Ski rentals and snowshoe rentals are available for those who don’t own their own gear.
If you did bring your own gear, snowshoes, sleds, hiking boots, or cross country skis Crandall Park in Glens Falls will keep you busy all day. Nicely groomed ski trails, hiking paths and parking for snowshoeing plus the best saucer sledding in the County makes for an action-packed day. For the more adventurous in your group pick up a fat bike rental at Grey Ghost Bicycles in downtown Glens Falls and head to Gurney Lane Recreation Park where you’ll find nicely groomed trails for bikers and hikers alike.
A little farther north is Natural Stone Bridges and Caves offering snowshoe tours with views of the stone bridge cave entrance, glacial boulder, ledges, and waterfalls. For those who enjoy motorized winter sports there are many spots to enjoy some tremendous sledding. For more than 200 miles of trails winding through the region check out the Thurman Trail System which offers a great way to explore the wild Adirondack Mountain foothills.
When the day starts to wind down and everyone is ready to meet back up for some après-ski the possibilities are extensive. West Mountain offers an outdoor fire pit surrounded by Adirondack chairs and the East Slope Eatery full service bar & restaurant. For more dining and nightlight options head to nearby downtown Glens Falls. Gore Mountain’s Tannery Pub & Restaurant has a large outdoor deck with an Adirondack view, indoor booths constructed from gondola cabins and a full-service menu with unique cocktail and beer selections. Off-mountain options that are worth the short drive include Bar Vino and Basil & Wick’s both located five minutes from Gore Mountain in North Creek. If Hickory was the mountain of choice head to George Henry’s or the Grist Mill in Warrensburg for warmth and great food and drink.
Ultimately visitors to the area will not be disappointed with all that there is to do. From ski mountains to sledding, swimming to bowling, museums to food, and everything in between you’ll find something for everyone to do and a place for everyone to meet afterwards. Cheers.
People tend to pick a favorite place in the Lake George Area, whether it’s a hotel or attraction, or a particular town that they just love to visit. North Creek often makes the favorites list. Driving up and then down into North Creek makes a person truly feel as if they have arrived, either to their favorite getaway or to a place that feels remarkably like home. The trees and landscape explode with riotous reds and golds in the autumn months, later the limbs carry a cloak of pristine snow, not to be outdone, by spring the trees are electric with bright new green buds, and through it all the sky overhead breaks in bluebird beauty.
Not exclusively winter destinations, Gore Mountain and its trails are a beacon for skiers and snowboarders, strengthened even more by the additional trails available at the North Creek Ski Bowl. Families traveling in the winter have turned the Polar Express Train Ride into a tradition.
Getting around to see the scenery can be done on foot, by bike, or even by gondola. There are more things to see than nature though, Hudson River Trading Company has long been a destination for people seeking that special little something, from lamps and art, to lotions, mugs, teddy bears and, of course, a bit of Adirondack fashion. They close for the winter, but their online shop is open year-round. Live performances, including concerts and theatrical productions, and a great art gallery can be found at Tannery Pond Community Center and you can explore North Creek’s role in American History at the North Creek Depot Museum.
North Creek also has plenty to eat and drink, for those famished after a day exerting themselves, or those looking to enjoy their adventure tableside. Café Sarah has you covered for breakfast and lunch, with delicious coffee and scones as well as piping hot soup and loaded sandwiches. Basil and Wick’s , an Adirondack Life Readers’ Choice award winner, offers Adirondack comfort food and a kids’ menu, making it an easy choice for families. They also have The Lodge at Basil and Wick’s for a more intimate experience. Marsha’s Family Restaurant, located right on Main Street in North Creek, lays it right out there, “We’re a fun restaurant, nothing fancy, but good solid food.” Trappers Tavern, at the Copperfield Inn, is an Adirondack classic with a rustic feel and hearty sandwiches and burgers to feed the whole family, or watch a game while you enjoy apps and a cold pint. Also on property is Lorenzo’s, an unexpected destination for authentic Mediterranean and Italian in the beauty of the Adirondacks. Chocolate lovers should head to Barkeater Chocolates where you’ll find gourmet chocolates including truffles, bars, bark, cocoa, and more.
Which leads us to where a person can lay their head in North Creek. The Copperfield Inn is a lovely option, just minutes from Gore Mountain, with 31 luxurious rooms. They offer a fitness facility and spa services, and seasonal enjoyment of their pool. The rooms have places to store your skis for those visiting during the winter! The Adirondack Alpine Lodge is a place for families or couples, and offers motel style lodging, choose a room with a gas stove or a Jacuzzi if you’d like. The Summit at Gore Mountain gives guests the option to choose from a range of vacation rentals that offer an experience a little closer to owning a slice of the Adirondack than a hotel might.
The beauty of a trip to North Creek is that you can be as adventurous, as decadent, or as stay-in-pjs-all-day as you want. It’s a place to experience time in the Adirondacks your way. C’mon up!
The Lake George Area has a great variety of trails. There are trails up mountains that offer views of the Lake George, the Adirondacks and Vermont; trails though wetlands; trails accessible by hikers and bikers; paved trails; and quick accessible trails perfect for a quick workout. Check out some favorites below. Do you have another favorite? Let us know!
This well-groomed trail complete with a gravel pathway and bridges goes through the heart of the Rush Pond wetlands. The 2.2-mile one-way trail is mostly flat and popular with hikers and bikers in the summer and cross-country skiers and snowshoers in the winter.
A largely undiscovered access point to the beautiful Pharaoh Lake Wilderness, the southern entrance trail lies just off of Beaver Pond Road in Brant Lake. The moderately difficult trail is a 2.37-mile hike that brings you to the end of Pharaoh Lake, where a classic Adirondack lean-to and views of Pharaoh Mountain are waiting for you.
The Chester Challenge is made up of 11 trails in the Chestertown region, just a quick drive up the Northway (I-87) from Lake George. With hikes ranging from beginner to moderately difficult, there is truly something for everyone. Those who complete all of the hikes in the Challenge are encouraged to visit the Chester Town Hall or North Warren Chamber of Commerce in Chestertown to receive a pin of completion.
The trailhead is just off West Mountain Road in Queensbury making it super accessible from I-87. It’s an easier loop coming in just under 2 miles. The terrain is varied with flat, sloping and steep inclines throughout. If you’re looking to get a quick workout in or to take the dogs on a walk, this is a great trail.
This 9.2-mile rail trail was the first in New York State! The beautifully paved bikeway begins in Glens Falls and will take you all the way to the southern end of Lake George, ending right in front of Million Dollar Beach. On the way you’ll get a great view of Glen Lake and go by Magic Forest. While not open to dogs, it welcomes both bikers and people on foot. If you’re an ice cream fan, this bike trail serendipitously takes you by three ice cream places including Cooper’s Cave, which also offers homemade soda, brews and food.
The Pack Demonstration Forest run by SUNY ESF is located just north of the town of Warrensburg, and boasts 2,500 acres of woodland. The Nature Trail, located near the entrance to the forest, has public parking and is handicap accessible. The trail cuts through an old-growth hemlock-white pine forest and can be extended onto a number of other trails also located in Pack Forest.
Cat and Thomas Mountains, both accessible from the same trailhead just north of Bolton Landing, are moderately difficult hikes that offer spectacular views of Lake George. Follow the ridge trail to summit on both mountains, and increase the difficulty of the hike by trying the newest trail on the mountain, the red trail, which descends from the summit of Cat Mountain.
Popular with skiers and snowboarders in the winter, Gore Mountain also offers access to hiking trails in the summer and fall. The trail that stretches up old logging roads and ski trails from the base of the Ski Bowl offers numerous branches that allow you to pick how difficult you want your hike to be, although the majority of the trails are on the challenging side. However the views from the top are not to be missed!
Located right in Thurman, Crane Mountain is steep and rocky but a fun climb. You can take the 3.1-mile loop which offers multiple beautiful views from one side and a scenic pond on the other. Be prepared to clamber up rocks and ladders to get to the top
Cole’s Woods offered North America’s first lighted cross-country ski trails and continues to be popular with skiers, snowshoers, runners, and walkers. Located in Queensbury it has multiple routes throughout with both steep and flat terrain and can be accessed from the parking lot of the Glens Fall YMCA.
Hit Gore Mountain for a full day of skiing. With 109 trails, a gondola, two double chairs, three triple chairs and a 2537’ vertical drop, Gore is the biggest mountain in the area. The ski day ends around sundown here, so it’s perfect if you need to tuck in kiddos or if you want to save the evening for something else. If you go make sure you take advantage of their full calendar of events, daycare, dining, bar, and the absolutely stunning views!
Operated by Gore Mountain and just down the road, the North Creek Ski Bowl offers up 11 trails, three glades, a half pipe, tubing, and twilight skiing. If you are up for some twilight skiing after a day at Gore, your Gore lift ticket includes same day access to the North Creek Ski Bowl. Or you hit up the ski bowl for the day, as the passes are a steal!
West Mountain is known for its long hours and night skiing. You’ll oftentimes find locals hitting up the mountain for a couple hours after work or dinner but its great terrain, rentals, lessons, tubing park, terrain parks, après culture, and proximity to downtown Glens Falls makes it a popular spot for visitors and first timers.
Expert skiers ready for some challenging terrain should head to Hickory Ski Center in Warrensburg. Founded in 1946 by veterans of the 10th Mountain Division this rugged mountain has a lot to offer. Open on weekends, Hickory Ski Center is often compared to Mad River Glen in Vermont because of its natural ski conditions, vintage lifts and the steep terrain. Beginners can find easier terrain towards the lower mountain. Head to the base lodge and sit around the fire pit for a break or to wind down after a full day. The mix of terrain, rich history and community atmosphere make Hickory a great mountain for families.
With just one trail and a rope tow this isn’t the biggest ski spot in the area but it’s free and has a lot to offer as it’s part of the Chester Recreation Center. While you’re there check out the sledding hill, the cross country ski trails, ice skating, and warming hut.
Get the Gear
Forget something or in the mood to update? Both Gore and West have rentals right on the mountain and there are plenty of great local gear stores to get you mountain ready. You can find ski and board rentals at Beaver Brook Outfitters in Weavertown and Cunningham’s Ski Farm in North Creek. If you’re heading north to get to any of the mountains take a pit stop at Fountain Square Outfitters, Sports Page, or Inside Edge. At Fountain Square Outfitters in downtown Glens Falls you’ll find enough gear to get you to the top of Mount Everest. If you’re looking for skis, snowboards, helmets, coats, and anything you could need to get you on the lift, go to Sports Page or Inside Edge in Queensbury. Their knowledgeable staff will hook you up with whatever you need.
Fall foliage, food and beverage festivals, scary fun, biking, and fishing, the Lake George Area has it all going on during Columbus Day weekend. Check out below for the weekends best bets!
Take in the beautiful fall foliage of the Adirondacks with a scenic drive through the Lake George Area. Below is a suggested driving route that takes you through Brant Lake, Warrensburg and along the west Lake George shoreline. Take in the view from the top of a mountain with a gondola ride up Gore Mountain in North Creek and drive to the top of Prospect Mountain in Lake George.
Foodies can get their garlic on at the Garlic Festival during the Warrensburg Farmer’s Market on Friday from 3-6pm at Warrensburg Mills Historic District Park. Live music, samplings, food contests, recipes, horticultural information, bulbs, and locally grown produce and maple products will plant the seed for a great long weekend.
Have scary fun and a ghoulish good time at the Six Flags Great Escape Fright Fest! During the day you’ll find great thrills on all the rides and roller coasters, a trick or treat trail, scream and costume contests, and more. Once the sun goes down the thrills will turn to fright as the ghouls emerge from three scare zones in the park! Tour a haunted house and walk the haunted maze!
Participate in a scary twist on a 5K run with theZombie Run also at Six Flags Great Escape during the Fright Fest weekend! Would you survive the zombie apocalypse? Try by donning a belt with three flags before the race and see how many you can keep as zombies chase you throughout the course and try to take your flags. Registration includes admission into the park and a post race Survival Bash!
Immerse yourself in the mountains and the fall season at the Gore Mountain Harvest Fest on Saturday and Sunday. Free admission from 10am-4:30pm both days. It’s great for the entire family! Dig in to a hearty and creative fall food and drink menu, an array of Adirondack artisan vendors, live music, helicopter rides, petting zoo, pony rides, children’s entertainers, and awesome inflatables! Enjoy all that Gore Mountain has to offer including their scenic gondola rides, downhill mountain biking, climbing wall, bungee trampoline, and disc and mini golf during the Harvest Fest.
Authentic German beer and food, Adirondack Brewery hand-crafted ales, live music, dancing, keg toss, yodeling contest, and more during the the Fifth Annual Lake George Village Oktoberfest on Friday, Saturday and Sunday! For the kids there is face painting, pony rides, bouncy houses, games and more. Artisans from throughout the region will also be displaying their beautiful creations that will be on sale for anyone ready for early holiday shopping or to take home a specially crafted item.
Calling all bikers! Peak Season Century around Lake George is Saturday, October 10th, and during peak fall foliage, this 100-mile bike ride will be one you won’t forget. Another plus, proceeds will be going to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. If 100 miles is too challenging, there is also a 62-mile option.
Make it a fishing weekend or just go for the afternoon, either way the trout will be biting! The Lake George Area has world-class fishing in its many lakes, rivers, ponds, and brooks. If you’re an experienced fisher familiar with the area, dive right in, but if you need guidance there are licensed guides or charter services. For more information on fishing in the Lake George Area, guides and charters visit http://www.visitlakegeorge.com/outdoor-recreation/fishing.