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Things to Do in January in Lake Placid

With 6-million acres of wilderness, the Adirondack Mountains hold unlimited potential for adventure and with so many possibilities it can be hard to decide how to explore it all. To help you plan your experience we asked Ed Kanze, Naturalist and Adirondack Guide, what's special about January in the Adirondacks.

Please keep in mind, while the world is experiencing a global COVID-19 pandemic, please check with the venue beforehand availability and accessibility can change on a daily basis. Many venues require reservations.

Experience the Adirondacks for Yourself

Profile photo downhill skiing at Whiteface Mountain with mountain range and sunset in background.
Downhill Skiing at Whiteface Mountain

Cross Country and Downhill Skiing

  • Cascade Ski Center is the perfect place for everyone to enjoy a day full of snowshoe and cross-country skiing. Located just 11 minutes from High Peaks Resort and boasting instructors and rental shop right on premises you can plan a day full of adventure the whole family will love. And even better? Daily admission is included with your stay at High Peaks Resort!
  • For something more Olympian, experience the solitude of exploring nature on over 30 miles of perfectly groomed trails and guaranteed snow at Mt. Van Hoevenberg.
  • Whiteface Mountain has long been known for the greatest vertical drop in the east, but this year the team at Whiteface Mountain is taking the experience to a whole new level with an enhanced learning center for kids and adults. The Whiteface Mountain Shuttle stops just outside High Peaks Resort on Saranac Avenue and drops you off at Whiteface Mountain so you can be on the slopes instead of looking for a parking spot. Lift tickets must be purchased in advance and availability is limited.
  • If you're looking for a smaller mountain in the center of town, Saranac Lake's Mt. Pisgah is a great option. A classic "small town" ski hill, Mt. Pisgah skiers enjoy green and blue level slopes and the dedicated staff and warm atmosphere make this ideal for families seeking a more mellow experience.

Two people snowshoeing on a wooded trail.
Snowshoeing from Moose Pond


  • Offering something for everyone, the Paul Smiths VIC boasts 14 different trails for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and skate skiing; a smorgasbord of outdoor adventure!
  • For more of an "off-road adventure", there are lots of opportunities to snowshoe many Adirondack hiking trails. LakePlacid.com maintains a list of some of the most local.

Red-Breasted Nuthatch in Winter
Red Breasted Nuthatch in Winter - Copyright © 2018 Edward Kanze

Birdwatching, Animal Tracking and Adirondack Forestry

  • Birdwatching is one of the most popular sports worldwide with more participants than basketball, baseball and football combined. We went birdwatching with Ed Kanze to see the draw for ourselves and walked away believing the hype. You can read about it in our blog, Birdwatching at Bloomingdale Bog.
  • Would you like to be an amateur animal tracker? With 115-acres to explore outdoors, and indoor exhibits and wildlife demonstrations, the Wild Center in Tupper Lake, NY is a great place to begin your education.
  • For more specified insight into Adirondack flora and fauna, secure your spot on an Adirondack Naturalist tour of the Paul Smiths VIC, Saturdays this winter.
  • The best resource for Adirondack wisdom are the keepers of Adirondack history themselves - the Adirondack guides. An Adirondack institution that goes back over 200 years, guides for hiking, climbing, hunting, and fishing have an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the Adirondack wilderness.

Cup of steamed milk, open book, cozy, striped socks.
A good book, a cup of coffee, a cozy spot, what would be better?

Catch Up on Winter Reading

  • At High Peaks Resort and Lake House, your guest room extends beyond your door. Our lobby is chockablock with nooks to cozy up with a good book and a hot cup of coffee for a few hours of digital disconnection and self-reflection.
  • Looking to explore the literary Adirondacks? The Bookstore Plus on Main Street has an entire section devoted to Adirondack titles and authors both online and in-store, including Ed Kanze's memoir Adirondack: Life and Wildlife in the Wild, Wild East which may be of particular interest to nature lovers.
Large breakfast plate with eggs, bacon and toast
Bed & Breakfast

Enjoy the breakfast of your choice at the world-famous Dancing Bears Restaurant for each person each day!

Couple over looking mirror lake in the great room at the lake house
Our Hotel is Your Lake House

With more than just comfortable, Adirondack lake character, a stay at Lake House puts you one threshold away from everything you want to see in the High Peaks Region.

The Adirondacks are yours. What they mean, how they inspire, is totally up to you.

Sunset through a set of wide bay windows
Sunset through a set of wide bay windows