Winter? These Guys Made Winter.

Lake Not-so-Placid: All the Go-Go Info for a Stay of Perpetual Motion

Dec 1, 1998
Outside Magazine

Getting There: Upstate New York is no place to be without a car, so if you're in the Northeast, you'll probably want to drive. (Lake Placid is five hours from Manhattan, five from Boston, and two-and-a-half from Albany—three during snow storms.) But if you hate long car rides, there are alternatives. US Airways flies to Saranac Lake Airport from Newark and Boston. Continental also as an express flight to Saranac Lake. Contact specific airlines for current rates. Once there, rent a midsize from Hertz (518-523-3158) for $56 per day.
Lodging: Yes, it's possible to sleep downtown without suffering a kitschy, Olympic-themed motel. Case in point: the Interlaken Inn (doubles, $80-140; 800-428-4369), an 11-room country inn between Lakes Mirror and Placid. Right on Main Street, meanwhile, is the view-endowed Hilton Lake Placid Resort. For the most luxe lodging around, try the Lake Placid Lodge (518-523-2700). Stay in the 1940s-vintage main building, where doubles start at $300, or nestle into a lakeside cabin. Both offer great Whiteface Mountain views and cross-country skiing right out the front door.

Venue Information:
Bobsled: A new combination bobsled/luge run opened in January of 2000. The run starts at the half-mile point and runs $30 during both the summer and winter. The full track is also open to elite athletes for training purposes and is open to the general public on some occasions. The full-mile run costs $125. Open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday. 518-523-4436.

Skating: The Olympic Center's four rinks are open Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. The speed-skating oval is open 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends. Admission is $5; rental skates, $3. 518-523-1655.
Downhill Skiing: Lift tickets at Whiteface cost $49 midweek, $54 weekends and holidays. 518-946-2223.
Nordic Skiing: Mount Van Hoevenberg (518-523-2811) is open from dawn to dusk. The $12 day pass is also good at nearby Lake Placid Resort, Cascade, and the Whiteface Club.
Ski Jumping: $8 buys a ride on the 120-meter platform's elevator or chairlift, launching from the bottom of the jump (9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday), but no hang time. To learn to jump, sign up for a weekend clinic with New York Ski Education Foundation ($50 for adults; 518-523-1900). Bring skis and a helmet.
For additional information and a virtual glimpse of the current conditions across Lake Placid, visit (they have five live webcams on line, updated hourly).