June 11th, Day 5. The rains continue as we head to yes, another lake; this one being Raquette Lake, the location of Great Camp Sagamore. Timing and not being forewarned would have helped as I was attacked by small black flies the moment I got out of the car. Had I known I would have waited for our tour guide to greet us with a net hat! Part of the tour takes you to the work buildings, such as where they make items that relate more toward the needs of the “resort” vs. a silversmith that might be making horse shoes…there are no horses here. You can then get a tour of the buildings that house the accommodations along with the recreation areas.
The furniture known to us as Adirondack Chairs are said to have been created to ease the suffering of those who had tuberculosis. I wonder if the makers of that penal code are aware.
As this is a “great camp”, don’t expect to be staying at a hotel with all of the amenities. No smoking, no pets, no maid service, no telephones in the rooms or cell service, no tv and no hard liquor. Most of the accommodations have shared baths and bunk beds. Hey, this is what sleep-away camp was like several years ago! All meals are served buffet style.
Part of the Sagamore Institute of the Adirondacks, educational programs are the happening. One of them, the Intergenerational Programs is restricted to Grandparents and Grandchildren. Seniors may also take advantage of Road Scholar, a former travel program that seemed to be restricted to staying at hostels. www.greatcampsagamore.org
To get an even better perspective of Raquette Lake, we scheduled a cruise on the W. W. Durant. Arriving early we first took a tour of the town. There was the following: one general store; on hotel that housed the one restaurant; one gas station (pretty much for boating); the library; post office location in the hotel. Let’s not forget the gift shop located just across the way from the W.W. Durant.
The boat cruise is a family owned and run company known as Raquette Lake Navigation, with dad as the captain, son as a bona fide CIA graduate chef, daughters and mom (Donna Pohl) handling everything else. You are given a map to follow the sites (many of which are camps) pointed out by the captain, which were still quite visible from the main deck windows despite the rain. Food is served buffet style with “table calling” so as not to make it that “one long line”. Enjoyed the food. www.raquettelakenavigation.com.
On the way to Wilmington, we stop off to check out Hoss Country Corner in the town of…Long Lake! Lots of animal things, books, Adirondack jarred food and gifts, a tree growing in the middle of the store, and fishing supplies to include worms. www.hossscountrycorner.com
Next destination is Tupper Lake to visit the Wild Center. I heard about the otter exhibit. This was a must for me…oh. if only I can pet one. As it turns out these particular creatures are sea otters different from the ones that you see lying on their backs and pulling their food apart. Just as cute! Time was spent inside the center with films, a pond with turtles and ducks, a series of fish, and a look at some “wild” history representing that Adirondacks. Outside are a number of walking trails that are well worth exploring. The website allows you to preview with short movies and cams that link to other areas of the Adirondacks as well. www.wildcenter.org
It is still raining as we check into the Ledge Rock Inn in at Whiteface Mountain. The appearance gives it a two story motel, but there is a lot more to it. A “Great Room” is a gathering place with amenities that include a big screen tv, movies, board games, and pool table. Outdoors is a pool, bbq areas and some fabulous views of Whiteface Mountain. Rooms are cozy, comfortable and clean with a small frig and microwave. Needless to say, the weather did not allow us to take advantage of the outdoor facilities. www.ledgerockatwhiteface.com
Dinner was at the Hungry Trout in Wilmington a short drive from Ledge Rock and on Route 86. It is actually a resort with various lodging and a separate restaurant. Although it overlooks the Flume Falls section of the West Branch of the Ausable River, a clear day would have given me a better view. We did love the “lodge looking” atmosphere. I dined on an appetizer of smoked trout (made on the premises), a soup of brie and wild mushrooms, and a platter with broiled trout, roasted farm quail and a venison chop. Loved the soup, trout and quail but for some reason I couldn’t get them to cook the chop pink in the middle vs. raw! www.hungrytrout.com