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36-Hour Fall Itinerary at Garnet Hill Lodge: Hike, Paddle, & Fish Among the Foliage

Posted in Fall at Garnet Hill, Things to Do

Escape to a fall paradise at the 850-acre Garnet Hill Lodge in North River, where you can spend a few days or a week reconnecting with nature at our off-the-beaten path resort and outdoor center. Stay active and enjoy the sights with hikes and other activities during the day, and then wind down in the evening with s’mores under the stars.

lodge in the fall

Check out a 36-hour fall itinerary below for ideas to get you started on your scenic getaway. All aspects, from the dining to the activities, are easily accessible right from our Lodge.

Evening: Get a Taste for the On-Site Restaurant & Settle In

draft beer and bruschetta chicken

The air is getting a pleasant chill and you have a succulent chicken bruschetta and a cold craft beer in front of you. You’re sitting outdoors with the mountains and Thirteenth Lake in the distance, making the most of this gorgeous weather before the snow comes in the next couple of months.

The Log House Restaurant opens for dinner at 4:00pm daily and features an Adirondack-inspired menu with entrée options like elk strip steak and grilled salmon. As an added bonus, Happy Hour takes place at the Log House Restaurant most Fridays from 5:00pm to 7:00pm.

two beds

Pro tip: If you’re arriving during a weekday you won’t even need to take the full day off work. Put in some hours during the morning and early afternoon, and you’ll be taking in the sights at this mountaintop resort before the sun goes down.

Morning: Take a Hike & Enjoy the Complimentary Breakfast

Awake feeling refreshed regardless of which lodging option you go for. If you opt for a Log House Balcony Room you can see stunning views of Thirteenth Lake; all bathrooms in the Log House have been recently renovated, and all rooms offer a rustic, comfortable feel.

Guided hikes are offered at no cost to guests on Saturdays and Sundays through September that start at 10 am and include a visit to historic Hooper Mine. Opt for the three-hour hike that goes on past the mine to William Blake Pond, or choose a one-hour hike option; both are rated as easy. If you’re visiting in September the leaves should be turning color creating amazing views. Coming in October? You can still enjoy picturesque colors.

hiker in woods in fall

And yes, breakfast is included for guests who stay overnight at Garnet Hill. Start the day off right with a delicious breakfast in the Log House Restaurant and fuel up for your day’s adventures.

Afternoon: Plan for a Picnic Lunch & Paddling Adventure

kayakers in the fall

Garnet Hill has a charming area by our beach with picnic tables, a short driving distance just down the road from the Lodge, an ideal place to enjoy a packed lunch. Rooms in the Tea House and Birches Cottages include mini fridges if you’re bringing something from home, or, you could pack your lunch to go from the Log House Restaurant.

If it’s too cold for swimming at the beach, a prime kayaking opportunity awaits at Thirteenth Lake. The resort offers free use of kayaks and canoes to guests! Just make sure to dress appropriately for a fall trip around the lake to protect yourself from the wind.

Evening: Reset & Recharge by the Fire

lodge at night, fire

After an invigorating day of hiking and paddling there’s no better place to round out the evening than by a roaring fire. After you’ve tried a different Log House Restaurant meal for dinner, make sure you’ve saved some room for s’mores, which are offered each evening. Gathering by the fire at night is one thing in the sticky hotness of summer – it’s a whole other cozy experience in the autumn.

Corn hole is available to play, or, you might just spend your mealtime gazing at the lake, mountains, and then later, the stars. When you’re ready to turn in head back to your ultra-comfortable room to spend some time with a good book, or the Tea House rooms include televisions if you prefer to get a show in before bed.

Morning: Rise Early for More Fun on the Lake (Or a Hike or Bike Ride!)

sunrise on summit

View from Hooper Mine

When’s the last time you woke up early to do something fun? If you’re into fishing, Thirteenth Lake offers more than just a pristine spot to paddle. The 1.6-mile lake is home to brook trout, rainbow trout, and brown trout to name a few species; fishing season goes through October 15. And if you’re not into fishing, we recommend squeezing in a mountain bike ride or checking out our 9-hole disc golf course.

Garnet Hill has 15 miles of dedicated mountain biking trails on the property, that wind through a pristine woodland setting and offer something for everyone from the less experienced to the hardcore mountain biker. Bike rentals are available at a discounted rate for overnight guests at our Outdoor Center through the end of November. So pick your activity or activities of choice and seize the day at Garnet Hill!

group of bikers on a trail

Or, take advantage of our 9-hole disc golf course – perfect for all skill levels! The course begins outside the Outdoor Center, travels toward the trails around the Log House, and then finishes back at our Outdoor Center. The challenging yet fun course is great for both novice and experienced players alike. The course includes multiple target positions to cater to players of different ability levels, and uses trees, bushes, and elevation changes to make each hole challenging and unique.

If you’re looking for another great day of hiking, there are trails that go around Thirteenth Lake, you can opt for a guided hike if it’s a Saturday or Sunday, or check out further close-by options like Peaked Mountain (an 8.2-mile hike) or Balm of Gilead (a 1.5-mile hike that overlooks Thirteenth Lake). In fact, you can even combine paddling with a hike – start by kayaking or canoeing across Thirteenth Lake and then hike up Peaked Mountain, which will shave 1.8 miles off the otherwise 8.2-mile hike.


view of fall foliage with Adirondack chairs

If you’re continuing on with your stay, ask the knowledgeable staff at Garnet Hill for more fall-filled things to do. They can help arrange a guided hiking or fishing excursion, and can suggest more ways to make the most of your visit. Don’t forget to plan a return trip in the winter when Garnet Hill transforms into a haven for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

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Garnet Hill Lodge

Garnet Hill Lodge