Do you ever just find yourself in need of a getaway? The holidays were busy, the New Year can be stressful, and nothing sounds better than relaxation and quiet. Hey, me-time is important! And there is no better place to go to find that much desired peace than the Whiteface Region.
Curious how I spent a weekend in the Whiteface Region? Read on!
I knew when I started planning my getaway I wanted to get to the area midday. (Full disclosure: my timeframe was entirely based around the hours of Adirondack Chocolates, which closes at 5 p.m.) So, I spent the morning scenic driving around the area, meandering through the woods roads and admiring all the winter glory. Right on schedule I rolled into Wilmington to find Adirondack Chocolates alive and well, and full of some sweet treats. Still on my New Year resolution to eat better, I didn’t leave with as much chocolate as I wanted, but still, there was enough in my bag to keep me happy for the weekend.
With my main objective already complete, I decided to meander on over to my room, which was 8-miles away in Upper Jay at the ADK Trail Inn. The website for ADK Trail Inn said “little inn with a big heart,” and that was all I needed to read. Plus, the photos of the rooms looked cozy (and some had kitchenettes, which was a great bonus during a time when social distancing is the norm).
After the sun set, I went outside to get some fresh air and take in the stars for a moment. It’s really incredible how little light population there is in the Adirondacks. It wasn’t long, though, before I decided it was time to head back indoors and plan my Saturday.
Being an early riser, I was up before the sun. The morning was a little chilly, but nothing a cup of coffee couldn’t cure. I gathered my things for the day and set out for an adventure.
First stop was, of course, Adirondack Mountain Coffee. Next up I wanted to visit the covered bridge in Jay. Having an interest in photography, the possibility of icy formations in the crisp morning air intrigued me. And the few minutes in the car would give me time to enjoy my coffee.
After a few photos, it was time to hike! Jay Mountain, with its interesting ridge walk, had been a favorite of mine since I hiked it a few springs ago. I wanted to experience it in the snow now. A quick drive over to the trailhead, a moment to fasten my snowshoes to my feet, and off I went! Having been hiking in the Adirondacks for years, I don’t find Jay Mountain overly challenging, but winter does add in different elements (like body-temperature regulation, etc.) to be prepared for. My winter legs were not fully developed yet, so I called it quits at the lookout; I was perfectly content with the view from there and not continuing over the ridge to the true summit beyond. With a little goodbye wave to Whiteface, I started my trek back to my car.
I took my time going down the mountain, enjoying every second in the peaceful forests.
By now it was afternoon and I was feeling a little hungry. Thankfully Adirondack Mountain Coffee was still open so I could stop back in for another cup of coffee and a sandwich! (They are only open for breakfast and lunch.)
After some time relaxing in my room and reading my latest bookstore find, I thought I’d head back over to Wilmington to have dinner and listen to live music at Pourman’s Tap House. I’m a big fan of a classic margherita pizza, and this one at Pourman’s is no joke. Honestly, I enjoyed the pizza, craft beer, and music so much it didn’t even bother me I was flying solo (dining out alone isn’t really my jam).
Sunday morning rolled around and, much to my dismay, it was time to get back home. But not without an adventure first! ADK Trail Inn had to-go breakfast ready, and shortly I was on my way to one of the Adirondacks’ coolest natural attractions: High Falls Gorge. Staff outfitted me with microspikes to help ensure a safe walk along the gorge.
I could have stayed forever looking at the icy formations and marveling at the incredible power of nature. But alas, the road was calling my name and it was time to leave. There is so much to do in the Whiteface Region, but it's also a great place to relax. It's close to everything, but just a step away, creating a wonderfully peaceful destination. I’m definitely looking forward to my next weekend getaway. Maybe I will make it a regular trip, visiting once every season.
See you in the spring!