Getting Oriented

The region is bordered by the Mohawk River valley to the south, Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River valley to the west and north, and Lake Champlain to the east.

While there are no major urban areas in the Adirondacks, there are several towns of note. In the northern Adirondacks, Lake Placid is unquestionably the hub of activity. To its south is the famed High Peaks area—the 46 highest peaks in the Adirondacks, most of them surpassing 4,000 feet. At 5,344 feet, Mt. Marcy is the highest point in New York. On it, at 4,320 feet above sea level, is Lake Tear of the Clouds, which is considered the source of the Hudson River. Also in the northern region is Lake Saranac, which, like Lake Placid, offers numerous dining, lodging, recreation, and shopping opportunities; Lake Saranac also has an airport with flights to/from Albany and Boston.

At the southeastern tip of the Adirondack State Park, near the border with Vermont, is Lake George, another travel hub and an entry point into the Champlain Valley. The valley is located at the easternmost edge of the park and—as its name implies—along the edge of the lake, which forms the physical border between the two states. There are several towns of interest in the valley, including Ticonderoga, which played a key role in the French and Indian War, and Bolton’s Landing, a resort town.

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