Fall Foliage – The Best Spots To See In The Adirondack Mountains

Adirondack Mountains during fall foliage, New York

If you are looking for the best places to see in the Adirondack Mountains during Autumn (and beyond) you are in the right place. I have done a couple of trips to this picturesque part of New York and I still can’t get over it. Here is an updated list of some of the best hikes, scenic drives and photo worthy locations during fall foliage in the Adirondacks. 

Best Time To Visit The Adirondack Mountains for Fall Foliage

Just like many other parts of New England, beginning of October seems to be the best time to admire extraordinary Fall colors. Last year I did a trip in the second week of October and it turned out to be an excellent choice. If you want to time your trip more precisely then head over to the general guide: Leaves peaking times in the Adirondack Fall Foliage: Map & Predictions

Upper and Lower Cascade Lakes

Located on Route 73 twin lakes offer tons of Fall foliage views framed by sheer rock cliffs. There are lots of turn-offs along the road so you can just stop at one of them and walk to a lake. Perfect place to rest during a long drive. 

Planning a trip to New Hampshire this Fall? Here is your guide to the best spots to visit!

Ranney Bridge

Ranney bridge is a historic bridge built over the Ausable River in Keene Valley. It’s a perfect spot for photographing Fall colors since it leads to several trails where you can admire beautiful foliage.

Roaring Brook Falls

You can perfectly see these waterfalls from Route 73 in Keene Valley. If you have more time you can take a short and easy trail and climb up to the waterfalls. Just be careful as the closest part of the trail to the Falls is rocky and slippery. If you continue on the trail you will able to reach the upper Falls.

Chapel Pond

Incredibly beautiful lake along Route 73 in Keene Valley. It is a very popular location for photographing fall colors, rock climbing, hiking and swimming. If you come here early in the morning you will still see the mist above the lake and the perfect mirror reflection. It is easily accessible from the small parking lot right next to the lake. 

Scenic Routes 73 and 86 Drive

One of the great ways to enjoy Fall colors is to just drive along scenic Routes 73 and 86. Both offer stunning views of meadows and mountains and are very picturesque with their curvy shapes. 

Beaver Meadow Falls

Beaver Meadow Falls are 60 feet tall cascade falls on a tributary to the Ausable River in Keene Valley. The falls are on an alternate way to the other famous spot, Indian Head, and are accessible via 3.7-miles one way hike. Just park your car, walk up Lake Road Way and turn left before the main club house. Walk for 2 miles and then follow a sign leading to the place. 

Indian Head

This is probably the best hike in the area so if you have enough time to do it do not hesitate. The views from the Indian Head overlook are outstanding especially during a Fall season. You will be admiring Lower Ausable Lake and colors of the surrounding woods. The trail is not difficult but it is a long walk – about 11 miles round trip. You can either walk on a mostly paved road and then climb up a hill (this part is a bit tricky and could be challenging for some people) or take a trail through the woods for more scenic views. We chose the second option and even though it was more difficult and longer way to get to our destination we really enjoyed every part of it. Also, on the way you will pass by a river, bridges, and waterfalls. 

Important thing to know is that you need to make a reservation in order to receive a permit to take this hike. There is no cost associated with making a reservation and it can be made up to two weeks in advance and as late as 12 hours before the hike. Open slots fill up fairly quickly so do not procrastinate. For more information head to Adirondack Mountain Reserve.

Mirror Lake (Lake Placid)

Mirror Lake is one the most photographed lakes in Lake Placid Village. I highly recommend you visit it at sunrise so you can see the fog rising above the lake and a perfect reflection on the water. This place is also well known for paddle-boarders and kayakers enjoying the lake early in the morning. 

Let me know if you have already been to these places or you know other beautiful locations in the area so I can add them to the list. I hope you have discovered something new or at least got inspired to travel in Upstate New York this upcoming Fall season. Thanks for reading and have wonderful trip!

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