The rains of Irene have left the Eastern Adirondack park scarred and damaged, along with the plans of many Labor Day vacationers. The Department of Environmental Conservation has announced that the Eastern High Peaks Wilderness, the Dix Mountain Wilderness and the Giant Mountain Wilderness areas will all be closed for the holiday weekend.
NYSDEC has stated that heavy rains have created hazardous conditions including severely eroded trails, washed out bridges and felled trees throughout much of the Eastern Adirondack Park.
The bridge over Marcy Dam was washed out, leaving the dam and the reservoir intact. The most popular trail to Mount Marcy was already somewhat isolated as a bridge on Adirondack Loj Road washed out Sunday, stranding 25 hikers at the Loj.
The road to the Garden in Keene Valley was also washed out, another very popular trailhead for High Peaks hikers.
Kris Alberga, a DEC forester, flew over the region and noticed that the dam at Duck Hole had been damaged, draining the pond that so many Northville-Placid hikers camp at during their journey. New slides were reported on more than a few of the High Peaks, Wright, Colden, Basin, Haystack, the Wolf Jaws, Giant and the Dixes to name a few.
The Eastern Adirondack region, namely the High Peaks Wilderness area, holds many of the coveted hiking trails and camping areas that vacationers look forward to every fall. Lake Placid and Keene will undoubtedly feel the economic effects of Irene for a while. Route 73, the main route into both towns was washed out in several locations and remains impassable.
So where can you hike, camp and enjoy the wilderness this weekend? West. The Western High Peaks region survived the storm relatively unharmed. It looks like Route 86 has been reopened leading into Lake Placid, and Route 28, Route 30, and Route 3 seem to have survived the storm unscathed.
There is a trailhead in Newcomb, and the road to get to it is open. Upper Works Road, leading to Upper Works trailhead is an option for hikers looking to explore the Western High Peaks.
We urge everybody to be safe when entering the woods this weekend. If you see conditions that look hazardous (ie: water runoffs, open slides, downed trees) please turn around.
Does anyone know if there are more roads/bridges closed in the Adirondacks? Are there other options for people looking to do some hiking or camping this weekend?