We headed to Lake Placid, NY, with our favorite Coonhound, Gus, for the Thanksgiving holiday this year. I would have to say that this great town which is most famously known for hosting two Winter Olympics should also be known as a great “pet friendly” destination for those of us who desire to share vacations with our pets!
There are over 14 hotels/lodges in Lake Placid that allow dogs and cats. The extra fees vary quite a bit, but you can spend anywhere from $0 to $50 per night extra to accommodate your precious pet. And, some hotels require a security deposit, ranging from $100-$250, to cover any damage caused by pets. We stayed at the High Peaks Resort (www.highpeaksresort.com) which came highly rated on www.Bringfido.com, and scored a five/five dog bones on their rating scale!! “The hotel is upscale and casually elegant with a decidedly energetic flair.” We were able to get a well appointed room on the fourth floor which provided a breathtaking view of the mountains and Mirror Lake.
The High Peaks Resort was very accommodating and warmly welcomed Gus with lots of petting and good dog treats… sure to please all the canine guests. There were also several other dogs staying at the hotel for the holiday weekend. We ran into several pet parents and pets in the comfortable main lobby lounge area where you could sit in front of one of two fireplaces while enjoying a glass of your favorite libation! The hotel is very conveniently located on the corner of Main street where most of the great shops and restaurants are within walking distance.
DAY ONE: On the road by 6:30 a.m. About seven hours of driving… Perfect Fall day with sun and 53 degree temperatures. Stopped at Lake Eaton State Campground for an hour hike. Checked into our hotel following our hike. Ordered dinner from the Dancing Bears Restaurant… not a Thanksgiving feast, but filled our bellies! And, Ahhh… much needed sleep.
DAY TWO: Another perfect Fall day with sun and clouds and 50 degree temperatures. Drove up to Mt. Jo located about eight miles from Lake Placid. Hiked up to the Summit… Very steep and full of huge boulders, but the view of Heart Lake and the Adirondack Mountains was incredible and well worth our efforts. It was amazing how much colder and windier the top of the mountain was. Always impressed by the stamina Gus and my husband Jim possess on these hikes… funny how I’m always the one at the back of the pack LOL! Had dinner at the Lake Placid Brew Pub…Great casual atmosphere, great in house brewed beer and great food. NOTE: Dogs are allowed to hang out under LPBP’s large outdoor Beer Garden tent from the end of July through October… Check out this photo of the beer tap…Love it!
DAY THREE: Weather changed quite a bit…got some snow overnight and early morning (maybe six inches total). Did a great one hour walk around Mirror Lake… so dog friendly and people were very considerate of each other. All the dogs were leashed and there were at least four “poop bag/garbage stations” along the entire walkway. Really pretty village. Headed up to the Adirondack Visitors Interpretive Center (near Paul Smiths College) to partake in some great winter hiking. Okay, get ready for some drama…
I had a near “I SURVIVED” experience (in my mind anyway!) while on this hike. I should have known when a very nice couple warned us that the “trails were not marked and it was very challenging to navigate with the snow cover and they got a bit lost” that this wasn’t going to be the two or three hour hike I had anticipated. We ended up getting almost FIVE hours of hiking in and finally reached the parking lot at 4:45 p.m! Did I mention that it gets dark at 4:18 and there was a winter storm coming and we were in the mountains…
Perfect time to play some super dramatic music here!!
Funny that Jim and Gus remained completely calm while my anxiety level steadily continued to rise. Thankfully, we ran into a lovely couple from Saranac Lake, George and Mareka, who finally pointed us in the right direction. Ironic really because there were no people around and the area we were in was pretty isolated. If only the visitor center had been open and we could’ve gotten a map or even better, if they had ANY signs or posted maps along the way… Oh well, has all the elements of a great survival story! We then headed to our favorite LPBP Pub for a much needed drink (and food) and Gus stayed back at the hotel to rest and catch up on his sleep.
DAY FOUR: 7:30 a.m…Yikes!… Jim (my husband with unlimited energy) headed to Whiteface Mountain to ski for a few hours while Gus and I stayed back at the hotel to relax, catch up on some reading (and recuperate!). We eventually stopped by Jake Placid Doghouse located right on Main Street (www.jakeplaciddoghouse.com) to shop for some fun gifts and treats for Gus and the kitties back home. A must see shop for any pet owner/lover…and your pets are welcome too! Had a great visit and got to chat with the crew at JPD…Jake, Roxie, Melissa and Debbie. Will definitely be back to visit again. As it was pretty frigid (28 degrees) we only stopped for a quick walk in Saranac Lake. Then we continued our snowy and sometimes blustery trek home…one of those trips where you’re using your imaginery brakes on the passenger side most of the way home!
Lisa G’s Restaurant (http://www.lisags.com), conveniently located on Main Street, was recommended by several other pet owners. Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough time to stop for dinner…I was a little disappointed that we never got there, but there’s always next time. The word on the street from other ”normal/not crazy” pet owners is that well mannered and leashed pets are welcome to dine inside if it’s not too crowded. We were hoping to have a dog friendly “European restaurant experience” but, just not enough time in a day! One more great pet friendly business to check out while your in Lake Placid.
If you like to walk and hike with your dog, there is some additional information provided by Jake Placid Doghouse on the topic. They also have some other suggestions for a veterinary hospital and daycare and boarding facilities should you ever need those services while you’re there. Here is a link from Jake Placid’s website… http://jakeplaciddoghouse.com/jpdh/A_Dogs_Life_in_Lake_Placid.html.
The NYS “Adirondacks” area, in general, has so many wonderful places to discover. Lake Placid has always been one of our favorite places to visit. No matter what the season or weather Lake Placid has plenty to do for pets and their humans. This post about my Thanksgiving vacation would not be complete without mentioning how blessed and truly thankful I am to have such a wonderful partner, my husband Jim, and my beloved “Soul Dog,” Gus, (who is 12+ years old) by my side to partake in this awesome holiday adventure. It’s good to be thankful every day for all that you have in your life.