Once upon a time, in a land not so far away at all, there was a master stonemason who lived in a giant city. This stonemason built tall towers so all of the people coming to the city could live and raise their families in warm and safe places. He'd spend his days on scaffolds and steel beams high above the city, lifting, and fitting, and mixing, and laying cement and brick and stone. And when he was done, covered in dust, and cement, he'd go home; taking the train and then the bus and then a short walk to his little house on the northern outskirts of the metropolis where his wife and two children were playing, and reading, and cooking, and laughing. And every night after dinner he'd fall asleep on the couch, sleeping right through his children fighting, and his wife hollering at them to cut it out, and the fire alarm going off because she was busy hollering at them instead of taking the cookies she was baking out of the oven, and then crying because she had to make a new batch for the bake sale and the dough had to rest overnight. Eventually, he'd amble up to bed and sleep until 4 AM, hoping his daughter didn't have any monsters in her closet that he'd have to slay at 1 AM.
This might have been my Dad's everyday routine but you've probably slain a few midnight monsters in your time or run the MTA triathlon (or decathlon, depending on how many connections you've got to make) or fallen asleep on the couch watching West Wing reruns on Netflix (that last part might just be me). And while I have always found that the most worthwhile things in life are the ones I've worked for, sometimes I really need to take a break; to go somewhere, slow down and get a new perspective. I need more than to relax and unwind, I need to dis-lodge and re-sort.
Five Ways to Relax in the Adirondacks
The Adirondacks are chockablock with experiences that are the perfect thoroughfare for self re-discovery, whether it's just you, your relationship or your entire family.
You've had a massage before, but have you ever been massaged by sound? Listening to music can be relaxing and moving, but the physical interpretation of sound waves on the body can be profoundly peaceful and wholly transformative. It's like having a massage on a cellular level.
I'll be the first to admit, I did not expect riverwalking to have the effect on my state of mind that it did. I should have, though. Water has been considered restorative both literally and figuratively for millennia. Maybe it's the push-pull feeling of the river as you encounter dips and mounds in the riverbed, the guided mindfulness exercises, the beautiful views that surround you. Whatever the reason is, Adirondack Riverwalking is like hydrotherapy for the soul.
Conceived as a response to the play-hard/work-harder burnout of salarymen and the world's most crowded subway system, the Japanese practice of shinrin yoku or "forest bathing" puts you directly in nature and removed from everything else. It's part digital disconnect and part mindfulness; forest bathing fosters a connection between the participant and the natural world in a way that doesn't just let you clear the clutter from your mind but shows measurable improvement in human health.
If you took the New York Times crossword and made it both auditory and visual you would have birdwatching in the Adirondacks and it can be as exciting as it is relaxing and it's great for the whole family. Adirondack Guide and Naturalist Ed Kanze is a fount of knowledge on the Adirondack Mountains and their residents both flora and fauna and a half-day adventure seeking out songbirds and sparrows is the perfect way to reprioritize nature in your life and disconnect from the demands of the worlds.
You just can't understand the simple joy of fishing until you've done it yourself and fishing with Terry Watson is, in my opinion, the only way to start. And I'm not the only one with this kind of fishing guide loyalty; Terry is one of the most in-demand Adirondack Guides in the park (so much so that he has virtually no online presence - he doesn't need it, the man's a legend). With over 40 years of experience guiding everyone from first-time adventurers to expert anglers, solo travelers to fishing families, on spin, ice, and fly fishing expeditions, Terry Watson has touched the lives and memories of countless Adirondack explorers.
Bonus - Expand Your Guest Room
Don't underestimate the benefits of enjoying a little "me time". Find a cozy nook or a shady spot, take a seat and indulge in a good book, a cup of coffee or tea, a cookie, and your own thoughts.
What are five more ways to relax in the Adirondacks?
- Yoga at the Waterfront · Summers at High Peaks Resort you don't need to look any further for deep relaxation than our own Waterfront lawn.
- Yoga with the Wolves · Get your downward-facing dog on with Kiska, Cree, and Zeebie at Adirondack Wildlife Refuge.
- Pamper Yourself · Indulge your senses, consider a treatment with one of Lake Placid's spa and wellness professionals.
- 18 Holes of Golf · The views, the courses, that feeling when you connect and watch the ball fly, the loud bellow of the word "Fore!" What could be better?
- Picnic · Enjoy a picnic by the water's edge or in a remote field full of green grass and wildflowers.