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Embrace the Adirondack Spring

“Mud Season,” a term affectionately used for the start of spring in the Adirondacks, is a time that’s considered shoulder season in the area, much like late fall. And, while shoulder season sometimes gets a bad rap, there are plenty of awesome and fun things to do in the region during the shoulder seasons. Let’s take a look at how you can have a great time during mud season in the Whiteface Region!

4 friends enjoy a drink around an open fire on the mountain
Whiteface Mountain. No coat required!

Low elevation hikes

We get it; you're anxious to get back out on the trails after a long winter, but it’s recommended to keep any hike of over 3,000 feet of elevation until after June, when the trails have completely dried. In addition, during this time, you may be tempted to go off the trails to avoid mud, but that can be harmful to the alpine vegetation and ruin the trails in the process, so do what you can to stay on the designated trails. If you're new to spring hiking, there's also something you should be aware of: it may be warm at the base of the mountain, but it's probably still (very) cold at the summit. I can attest to this firsthand; on a relatively warm May day I decided to set out on a hike of my own, and at the summit I had to ask sheepishly to borrow a friend's extra pair of gloves. With that said, be prepared and bring warm clothes and the necessary equipment for snow, ice, and cold. In this case, it's better to be safe than sorry. 

But look, just because there’s mud, that doesn’t mean you can’t hike! There are plenty of trails in the area that fit the bill for low-elevation fun. Owen, Copperas, and Winch Ponds all offer relaxing hikes for mud season. The Flume Trails offer easy hiking for the season as well. And if you're looking for a little more of a challenge off the beaten path, then Clements Pond can provide just that. Bonus, Clements Pond is stocked with brook trout and a great place to fish.

Two people in coats and hats walk through a trail. Water runs behind them.
Mud season can be a great time for a relaxing walk through the woods


The internationally recognized Ausable River that runs through the region is perfect for your next spring catch. The fishing really ramps up in late March around here, and there are plenty of spots in the region for your next fishing adventure. If you’re just getting your feet wet (pun intended), then reach out to one of the region’s expert fly fishing guides to help you find your way around and find that perfect spot for your next big catch. If you need more convincing, watch a quick video here about how local guide Evan Bottcher feels about fishing right here in the Whiteface Region. 

A person fly fishing while standing in the river. Trees line the bank behind him.
The fishing season heats up in March.

Attractions / Events

It’s true: some establishments do close for the shoulder season. However, if you get here quick enough, you can still sneak in a walk around the beautiful waterfall at the High Falls Gorge, which is open until March 26 this year. Aside from that, the Jay Covered Bridge offers a chance to experience the history of the region and see the last covered bridge in the Adirondacks!

While some of the establishments are on hiatus, that doesn’t mean there aren’t still things to do. The Upper Jay Art Center, appropriately located in Upper Jay, NY, is a unique performance venue that you need to experience for yourself to truly understand its magic. A schedule of events is planned for this coming mud season, including live music, live performances, and even a clowning workshop. 

In addition, places like Twisted Raven, Rudy’s Scar Bar and Grille, and 20 Main routinely offer live music on the weekends and are a great place to eat and grab a cold drink. 

To keep up with all the events in the Whiteface Region (or the entire Adirondacks), sign up for our Insider for more updates and information.

A close up of a microphone on stage in a dimly lit venue
Live performances fill the mud season schedule.

Whiteface Mountain

Last, but definitely not least, just because the winter is technically over that doesn’t mean the fun has stopped at Whiteface Mountain! You know, that mountain with the highest vertical drop east of the Rockies. Spring skiing (and boarding) can be some of the most fun times you will have at the mountain, and the season traditionally runs until about mid-April. The birds are back, the sun is out, and you’re still shredding. That’s tough to beat!

And for this season, Whiteface’s Cloudspin Bar and Grill will be having their own music series, complete with cold drinks, great food, awesome giveaways, and of course, live music. By the time this is published, there will still be a few sessions left, so don’t miss out on the fun!

A person sits on the mountain in a lawn chair in shorts.
Shorts and skis at Whiteface Mountain

A lot of fun in a little time

The mud season doesn't last long; it's technically only from March to May. And while shoulder season can be polarizing, there are undoubtedly plenty of ways to have fun here during it. Plan your springtime getaway today by finding a place to stay, something to eat (remember that some establishments take a break, so always check ahead), and find even more to do. The spring (and some mud) is here, and you should be too! 


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