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Roughing It: Primitive Camping Spots in the Adirondacks

While the comforts of State campgrounds can be nice, there's something special about pitching your tent off the beaten path. We've put together this list of six areas you should explore on your quest for primitive camping spots in the Adirondacks.

man by camping tent in woods
Photo credit: Alan Nudi

1. Sacandaga River - West Branch

The West Branch of the Sacandaga is a good trout fishing destination, and also has some great primitive camping spots along it near Wells, NY.

2. Marcy Dam - Keene Valley, NY

If you're hiking in the High Peaks, Marcy Dam is a great basecamp with a prime location at the foot of Mt. Marcy and less than a five mile hike to Algonquin.

3. Lake Colden - Newcomb, NY

Lake Colden is also in the High Peaks region and can serve as a basecamp for multiple peaks.

4. Wolfjaw Mountains - Keene, NY

Rounding out our trio of High Peaks, there are great places to camp behind the Wolfjaw Mountains.

5. Fishbrook Pond - Dresden, NY

Located to the east of Lake George, Fishbrook Pond has a pair of lean-tos campers can use, in addition to other campsites.

6. Santanoni Preserve

The Santanoni Preserve in Newcomb, NY is a State Historic Site, on the National Register of Historic Places, and is a National Historic Landmark.

It's closed to motorized vehicles and is a five-mile hike (or bike) in and out with eight designated camping areas near the Main Lodge.

Learn about lean-to camping >>

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