It feels like a while since the summer ended and as our last post demonstrated, the colors in the Adirondacks have been spectacular as usual this fall. So a small group of staff set out on an adventure to hike Colden, with hopes of catching the last of the Autumn hues. Knowing full well, that the weather can be changeable in the higher elevations, we were well prepared for colder temperatures and gusty winds. The morning was brisk and overcast, as we set out from the South Meadow road, yet we felt optimistic that there was a wonderful day ahead of us. We reached Marcy Dam in good time and took the opportunity to survey the mountain that we planned to scale. It was also a chance to see in person, the remnants of Marcy Dam and the missing bridge, that got washed away during the Tropical storm, Irene.
Hikers can still hike from the Adirondack Loj, but need to forge the river down stream of where the bridge used to be. You can see in the photo that the water is very high again, because since the dam burst, the pond has tended to be more of a small stream. On this day, it almost looked as full as we’d remembered it from past visits. As we cast our eyes towards Colden, we saw what appeared to be snow on the peak. It was hard to tell how much snow, but it was most definitely snow!!
After signing in at the register, we hiked on through golden, red, yellow and brown leaves, climbing ever higher. The colors were especially pretty next the evergreens and gurgling streams. When we reached Lake Arnold, the trail started to wind upwards in a more determined fashion and as the elevation got higher, the temperature got lower. Like magic, we hiked from Fall, into Winter. It was like traveling in time. As the tree line got shorter, the branches were more heavily laden with snow. We burst out on top of Little Colden, where the wind took one’s breath away as it slapped you in the face with full force. The exposed rock was running with water that was turning to ice in places, so extra caution was used.After a welcome dip back into the trees, we took the opportunity to add further layers and have a snack before making a last upward push to the Summit of Colden. From here, we enjoyed views of the MacIntyre Range and of Mount Marcy as the skies cleared long enough to show the neighboring peaks.
We quickly made our way down and stopped again at Lake Arnold for lunch number 7, while basked in the relative warmth of the sun, before trekking on back towards the parking lot.
But we had to have an after shot too!
We wish you could have been there with us and we look forward to the next time we get to hike with campers from North Country Camps on a perfect TAD!