For a small mountain village, Lake Placid offers big winter adventures that can easily fill up an epic weekend trip. With some warm winter gear and a pair of snowshoes, you can cure that tragic case of winter blues by exploring the mountain trails, stunning views, and roaring rivers surrounding this Adirondacks village. Having hosted two Winter Olympics, Lake Placid is primed and ready for winter weekend warriors. It offers several hotels, resorts, and a healthy selection of bars and restaurants for your post-adventure pick-me-ups. Beyond a bobsled ride and other Olympics memorabilia ogling, here are some of the ways we'd spend a winter weekend in Lake Placid.
Table Top Mountain Snowshoe: Strap on snowshoes for a 10-mile out-and-back trek up New York's 19th highest summit. Enjoy breathtaking views as you cross the icy Marcy Dam and continue along easy snow-laden trails through Adirondacks wilderness.
Whiteface Mountain and Esther Mountain Snowshoe: No trip to Lake Placid is complete without experiencing some aspect of the 1980 Winter Olympics. When you hike or snowshoe the 11.3-mile out-and-back trail to the summit of Whiteface Mountain, you'll be trekking the very same mountain that Olympic skiers sped down. During the winter especially, look forward to amazing views of the snowy landscape below and take time to explore the ice-encrusted mountaintop castle.
Catamount Mountain: A short and technically challenging snowshoe trail leads to absolutely stunning winter views at Catamount Mountain, a 40-minute drive from Lake Placid. The 3.7-mile out-and-back adventure is a steep climb featuring some rock scrambles that will get your blood flowing, a welcome feeling in the frozen depths of winter.
Cobble Hill: Once a downhill ski area, Cobble Hill is now a great place for Lake Placid visitors to stretch their legs. Offering a steep, 0.4-mile route or a gentle 1-mile route, this nearby adventure is perfect for those days with unsteady weather conditions or hikers for those who might just want a quick jaunt in the snow rather than a full trek. Both hikes could probably done without special winter gear, and either would be a wonderful way to get in a hike with the whole family during your stay.
Connery Pond: Walk the half-mile gravel road out to Connery Pond for stunning views of the snow-laden Adirondacks. Unencumbered views of Whiteface Mountain from across the icy water make for amazing photographs, while the quiet and easy trail makes for a peaceful winter adventure that'll have you back inside before your toes get chilly.
Monument Falls: Even when the water's iced over, a waterfall is always a welcome sight. At a mere 5 feet, Monument Falls is no Niagara, but with Whiteface Mountain as a backdrop, these roadside falls are well worth the visit.
High Falls Gorge: For a slightly more impressive winter water show, head to the privately owned High Falls Gorge, where you can snowshoe on well groomed paths and sturdy bridges that span the ancient gorge and lead to several stunning waterfalls and swirling pot holes. The park does charge an entrance fee, and it offers snowshoes and Yaktrax rentals along with hot chocolate and marshmallow roasting on the weekends and holidays.