Beautiful vistas, views, scenic overlooks, and secluded treasures abound in the Adirondacks. Sometimes a little windshield time is the best way to take it all in.
Some of our more famous – or infamous – residents have left their mark over the years, creating small wonders to amuse and entertain. As you drive through the towns, villages, and wilderness of the Adirondacks, keep an eye out for some of these unique roadside attractions:
Every so often, nature provides us with an opportunity we simply can't resist. That seems to be the case for the artists behind Painted Pig Rock in Speculator. Along the side of Indian Lake Road is a modestly-sized rock that resembles a pig's face with a pronounced snout. Legend has it that the rock was created by a road construction project in the mid-50s, and a few years later the daughters of a nearby resident accentuated the resemblance by painting the rock grey with a white eye and snout. Painted Pig Rock has become such a staple of the area that protesters saved the rock from being destroyed in a second building project in the 90s.
Address: Indian Lake Rd, Speculator, NY
I think we can all agree – Adirondack chairs are kind of a big deal. Comfortable and classic, their popularity has expanded well beyond the Blue Line. Throughout the park, you will find several larger-than-life models that make for perfect picture opportunities. Supposedly, the 12-foot Adirondack Chair at Brant Lake Camp, built in 2005 for the 90th anniversary of the camp, was the first of its giant kind. Whether that's true or not, it's an iconic sight and well worth the climb up into the seat for a photo.
Address: 7586 State Route 8, Brant Lake, NY 12815
This is one roadside attraction you simply cannot miss. Towering above Lake Placid, and visible in the sky from miles around, are the massive 90 and 120-meter Olympic Ski Jumps constructed for the 1980 Winter Olympics. Athletes continue to train and compete on these jumps, and visitors can take a trip to the top for incredible views of the High Peaks. Venture out onto the platform and imagine gliding down the steep ramps before flying through the air on skis – it's enough to make your knees wobble!
Address: 5486 Cascade Rd, Lake Placid, NY 12946
Sprinkled throughout the Adirondack Park are numerous breathtaking waterfalls, but getting to the majority of them first requires explorers to take a hike. High Falls Gorge in Wilmington is an exception. Conveniently located along Route 86 on your way from Lake Placid to Whiteface Mountain and Wilmington, High Falls Gorge makes natural beauty easily accessible. Groomed walkways and bridges allow you to meander next to, over, and in front of the water, providing excellent angles for both viewing and photographing the falls. Stretch your legs on their trails and hit up the gift shop for a souvenir or snack before hopping back in the car!
Address: 4761 NY-86, Wilmington, NY 12997
Similar to Painted Pig Rock, Elephant Rock is a natural formation turned phenomenon with the help of an artist's hand. Along Route 8 in Hague is a uniquely folded rock formation that looks remarkably like an elephant with its face turned toward the road. The addition of painted eyes, tusks, and a few trunk wrinkles make the resemblance undeniable. Located off the main drag, visiting this attraction will take you on an exciting adventure through Adirondack back roads.
Address: Route 8, Hague, New York 12836 USA
Explore our scenic roadways and these must-see sights this summer – start planning your Adirondack trip!