Adirondack Fall Foliage
Fall in the Adirondack region (known as the ADKs) of New York state is often described as the most beautiful time of the year. The combination of tree species, warm days, cool nights and the right amount of rain during the summer, means that the Adirondacks can consistently count on beautiful foliage.
The progression of color change moves steadily down in elevation, beginning in mid-September through the Blue Mountain Lake, Speculator and Old Forge areas, until mid-to-late October with the areas along Lake Champlain and Lake George being the last to change.
There are many ways to enjoy this spectacular beauty; by hiking the region's 2,000 miles of hiking trails, canoeing the region's waterways or simply relaxing at one of the region's charming resorts. The best way may be by traveling along one of the region's Scenic Byways. The byways provide a journey through the colorful mountains while allowing the traveler to partake in the region's lively local culture. Find your perfect autumn getaway in the Adirondacks.
1. Adirondack Fall Foliage Season
Peak leaf peeping moves steadily through the Adirondacks with the decreasing elevation. Mid-September in the Blue Mountain Lake and Speculator areas is the best time to visit these higher elevation areas. In mid-to-late October, peep along Lake Champlain and Lake George areas.
2. Adirondack Fall Foliage Towns
At six million acres of beautiful wilderness, freckled with quaint towns and sparkling lakes, the entire Adirondack Region is on display. Take a drive along one of the region's 12 Scenic Byways, wind along gorgeous mountain lakes, stop and enjoy one of several Harvest Festivals, take a turn in a corn maze or simply enjoy the beauty of the landscape.
3. Scenic Drives for Adirondack Fall Foliage
The Adirondacks boast of 12 Adirondack Scenic Byways - perfect for leaf peepers with plenty of fairs, festivals and cozy lodging properties along the way.
List of 12 Adirondack North Country Scenic Byways:
- Lakes to Locks Passage
- Mohawk Towpath Byway
- Adirondack Trail
- Black River Trail
- Central Adirondack Trail
- Dude Ranch Trail
- Military Byway
- Olympic Byway
- Roosevelt-Marcy Byway
- High Peaks Byway
- Blue Ridge Road
- Southern Adirondack trail
4. Adirondack Fall Events
- The Great Adirondack Moose Festival
September - Indian Lake offers guided hikes, scenic driving tours, fly-fishing and fly tying demos, a car show, and open houses - not to mention a lot of moose.
- Whiteface Oktoberfest
October - Wilmington offers a Bavarian and Alps extravaganza at Whiteface Mountain that offers live music, dancing, Bavarian food, children's activities and vendors. Take in the mountains and surrounding foliage with a gondola ride to the top of Little Whiteface Mountain.
- Remington Arts Festival
October - Canton offers historic tours of the Village of Canton, wagon rides, children's games, an art show and sale, food, music and special demonstrations. This event celebrates the life and times of famed artist Frederic Remington.
- Adirondack Harvest Festival
October - Blue Mountain Lake offers a step back in time with wagon rides, cider pressing, music, pumpkin painting and so much more at the Adirondack Museum's extensive grounds.
- Flaming Leaves Festival
October - Lake Placid is a popular fall attraction with live music, beer, bbq and a ski-jumping competition. Craft vendors are on site for kids, or take an elevator to the top of the 120-meter ski jump for a panoramic view of Lake Placid's fall foliage.
- Adirondack Balloon Festival
September - Queensbury offers the stunning flight of more than 90 hot air balloons, live bands, children's activities and fireworks all set against the brilliant foliage of the Lake George region.
5. Historic Sites in the Adirondacks for Fall Foliage
- Crown Point Historic Site - A National Historic Landmark featuring the ruins of Fort Saint Frederic and Fort Crown Point - circa 1700s. Visitors center and exhibits. Open through October. Free admission. Located in Crown Point, NY
- John Brown Farm State Historic Site - Home and gravesite of abolitionist John Brown featuring nature trail and tours. Open through October. Located in Lake Placid, NY
- Almanzo Wilder Homestead - Boyhood homes of Almanzo Wilder, husband of famed author Laura Ingalls Wilder. Open through Labor Day. Tours daily. Open in off-season by appointment. Located in Malone, NY.
- Great Camp Sagamore - Historic Adirondack Great Camp built by William West Durant. Features 26 fireplaces and 29 buildings. Open daily through Labor Day. Off-season by appointment. Located in Raquette Lake, NY.
- Fort Ticonderoga - Restored military fort featuring military museum, fife and drum parades, weapon demonstrations and historical re-enactments. Open though October 20. Located in Ticonderoga, NY.
6. Fall Foliage Tourist Attractions
- Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake
- The Wild Center in Tupper Lake
- Whiteface Mountain Gondola Rides - Experience the autumn foliage from the breathtaking vantage point of the region's famed ski resorts.
7. History, Literatures, and Antiques in the Adirondacks
- Blue Mountain Lake - the Adirondack Museum hosts several events in the fall - including the Rustic Fair, the Antiques Show Preview and Benefit
- Indian Lake - Adirondack Mountain Antiques Weekend
- Warrensburg - World's Largest Garage Sale
- Saranac Lake - Robert Louis Stevenson Cottage and Tearoom
- Lake George - Scherer's Antiques
- Peru - A Poor Man's Collectibles
- Plattsburgh - Town & Country Antique Shop
- Queensbury - Glenwood Manor Antiques
8. Fall Family Adirondack Activities
- Fright Fest at the Great Escape October. Thrills by Day Chills by Night! By day a Halloween playground, costume & scream contests & Trick-or-Treat Trail. When the sun starts to set the ghouls come creeping out, hair-raising shows, electrifying street entertainment, haunted attractions.
- Hiking the Adirondack Peaks - Many Adirondack hikes are perfect for families with easy-to-access trail heads and spectacular rewards at the top.
- Blue Mountain Lake - This Adirondack town is right in the center of the Adirondacks. The Adirondack Museum, Great Camp Sagamore, the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts and Raquette Lake can be found nearby.
- Fort Ticonderoga - On the shores of Lake Champlain sits this historic, restored fort. Tour the Heroic Corn Maze, join in reenactment events and stroll along the King's Garden.
- Great Escape & Splashwater Kingdom - Fall themed events like Fright Fest, Oktoberfest and Rocktoberfest make this Six Flags Park near Lake George a must for families.
- Pick-Your-Own apples at Rulf's Orchard and Applejack's Orchard, both in Peru, NY.
In addition, these attractions are a perfect way to enjoy the Adirondack Autumn:
- The Wild Center - Tupper Lake, NY
- Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course - Bolton Landing, NY
- Adirondack Scenic Flights - Lake Placid, NY
- Great Adirondack Corn Maze - Gabriels, NY
- Fort Ticonderoga Heroic Corn Maze - Fort Ticonderoga, NY
- Scenic Northwoods Gondola Skyrides - North Creek, NY
- Upper Hudson River Railroad - North Creek, NY
- Ausable Chasm - Ausable Chasm, NY
- Whitewater Rafting - Hudson, Sacandaga and Moose River
9. Fall Foliage Adirondack Lodging
Find Adirondack lodging packages and book your next getaway online to save. State and privately owned campgrounds offer an affordable and fun way to experience the region - offering a wide range of campsite locations. Camp along the Saranac Islands, in a lean-to or at one of the many family-friendly campgrounds in the Adirondacks.
10. Adirondack Information
There are so many ways to enjoy the spectacular beauty of the region; by hiking along the 2,000 miles of trails, canoeing the waterways or simply relaxing at one of the region's charming resorts. Be sure to bring your binoculars and camera - wildlife sightings, coupled with the sensational beauty of an Adirondack Autumn make for a spectacular time. You may even spot a moose!
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