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Garnet Hill’s Favorite Winter Day Trips in Upstate NY

Posted in Winter at Garnet Hill

Are you spending a winter weekend with us at Garnet Hill Lodge, and searching for even more to do in the Adirondacks? There are many activities to choose from including skiing and snowboarding, scenic drives, and great shopping nearby. Some of the best places are just an hour or more away, so the question is, where will you go for our suggested winter day trips in Upstate NY?

Perhaps, your day is less adventurous and more focused on shopping and dining. Or, maybe you want to spend a full day on the snowy mountain slopes, which is a fantastic choice during an Adirondack winter.

Check out our recommended winter day trip ideas below, and plan your stay at Garnet Hill!

Hit the Slopes at Gore Mountain

people skiing down a hill

Fifteen minutes away from Garnet Hill is none other than Gore Mountain. If you are looking for some snowy slopes to hit, you can do this by either snowboarding or skiing at Gore.

For those that aren’t interested in hitting the slopes, there is cross-country skiing and snowshoeing offered at their Nordic Center. This will fuel your sense of adventure for the day as you take in all that winter has to offer. Afterwards, come back to the rustic cozy atmosphere at Garnet Hill to warm up!

Cheers to Winter with Food & Drinks On-Site or in North Creek

log house dining room

At Garnet Hill Lodge, we offer two on-site dining options to fulfill your hunger. Our Log House Restaurant has an extensive menu with culinary delights such as Honey Grilled Chicken and Pan-Seared Halibut. Our second dining option is The Bobcat Bar & Grill. If you are looking for warmth after a long day of skiing or snowshoeing, this is the place. Stop in for one of our signature sandwiches to refuel your appetite after a long day outside.

For more dining options close by, North Creek has plenty to offer. Located near Gore Mountain, Becks Tavern has German-inspired cuisine and a full bar. This could make for the perfect stop after a day on the slopes.

For a more romantic evening, head over to barVino which serves fantastic wine and a variety of options on their food menu. Some of their menu items include a Burrat Stuffed Ravioli, Chicken Picatta, and Seared Tuna.

Or, opt for an evening that is more easy going and laid back at Basil & Wick’s. The menu was curated by their award-winning chef, and they have plenty of food to pick from. They have options for meat lovers, pescatarians, vegetarians, and vegans too.

Discover Winter Fun in Indian Lake

a snowshoer exploring

Located a little over twenty minutes from Garnet Hill is Indian Lake, an Adirondack community featuring winter activities like snowmobiling, ice skating, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing.

Snowmobiling does not require a permit for Indian Lake, allowing for a great adventure. If you visit with family, ice skating might be a better option. The town of Indian Lake has their own ice skating rink on Ski Hut Rd. It is open Monday, Tuesday, & Friday from 6 PM to 9 PM.

If you enjoy snowshoeing, you may find tracks of wild animals in the snow. One of these snowshoeing destinations is Fern Park located in Inlet. It holds over 12 miles of trails to explore on your snowshoes. That is a lot of time spent exploring!

For the cross-country skiers, it would be worthwhile to strap on your skis at the Northville-Placid Trail. This will offer plenty of trail to explore as you glide through the forest. It is a favorite of many during the winter time as the wilderness is painted in snow allowing for great solitude.

If you are in Indian Lake for the morning, stop into Mountain View Adventures Cafe for a cup of joe. They are open on Fridays and Saturdays from 8 AM to 2 PM. Their cafe offers gifts too if you want to get a souvenir for yourself or someone else.

Experience a Scenic Drive Through the Region

Winter offers some of the best scenery in the Adirondack Mountains, especially after a fresh blanket of snow. You will be mesmerized as the trees are painted white that lead up to a view of the mountains.

One of the greatest drives to take in the Adirondacks is right outside our door on Route 28. This extensive route will bring you to beautiful sights such as Blue Mountain Lake.

During this drive, there are opportunities to get outside too. If you want to try a winter hike, head over to Castle Rock. It is a short hike that overlooks Blue Mountain Lake in all of its beauty.

For a bit tougher of a hike, head to the Blue Mountain Lake Fire Tower to climb Blue Mountain. Although it is more challenging, the reward is well worth it. The views from the fire tower showcase Blue Mountain Lake and some surrounding high peaks in the distance.

Note: Be cautious of heavy winds and icy conditions if you plan to climb the fire tower during winter.

Explore & Shop in Historic Lake Placid

lake placid outdoor sign

A longer drive from Garnet Hill, Lake Placid is located an hour and a half away. It is worth the trip as there are many things to do upon your arrival. You can start by doing some ice skating on the Olympic Speed Skating Oval in the heart of the village. Or, step inside the nearby Lake Placid Olympic Museum and dive into the history of winter sports.

Afterwards, enjoy a cafe or restaurant in the community. These restaurants offer different cuisines such as Italian fare at Jimmy’s 21, smoked meats at Smoke Signals, or American fare at Players Sports Bar.

If you’d like to go shopping, there are several stores to visit in Lake Placid. To find literature or learn about local history, check out The Bookstore Plus. For reliving historic moments in hockey, pick up some gear from the USA Spirit Shop. If you’d like some cozy apparel, step inside Bear Essentials, which has many products to choose from.

Spend a Day Dreaming in Lake George

people standing near purple lights

Lake George is a fantastic stop to make if you have a winter bucket list for activities. One of their must-see attractions this season is known as Lake George Winter’s Dream. Located at the Fort William Henry Historic Fortress, this attraction is garnering a lot of attention. Known for its vivid lights, unique sounds, and interactivity…it will keep you mesmerized for forty to sixty minutes.

If you are visiting Garnet Hill in February, look into the Lake George Winter Carnival. Taking place on February 3-4 and following weekends, there are many activities that will occur. There will be a hot chocolate bar, an annual parade, and karaoke. This is something you won’t want to miss if you are in the area.

Lake George has some great dining options too if you want to grab food during your visit. One of their restaurants is the 163 Taproom which offers many local brews and an extensive food menu. Some of these culinary delights include a smokehouse burger, signature sandwiches, and twin shrimp tacos.

Where Will You Go?

Garnet Hill is in close proximity to all of these great adventures that you can take on in the Adirondacks. There is an abundance of winter day trips in Upstate NY and most are right outside our doors. With such great choices, we suppose the question shouldn’t be where will you go…but when?

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Garnet Hill Lodge

Garnet Hill Lodge