Great Sacandaga

Views Of Great Sacandaga

Once upon a time a fire observation station existed on Ohmer Mountain, in the Town of Day, north of Great Sacandaga Lake. It was later moved to Hadley Mountain further north. Hadley Mountain is a peak that is 2,675 Ft. in elevation on West Mountain Ridge. There, a fire tower and cabin still stand. During the summer a steward spends time up there taking care of the site.
To get there; go to Lake Luzerne where the Sacandaga River meets the Hudson. Route 9N passes through Lake Luzerne between Saratoga Springs and Lake George. At Lake Luzerne pick up Stony Creek Rd. and drive north to pick up Hadley Hill Rd. on the left. Down Hadley Hill Rd. is tower Rd. on the right. Tower Rd. leads to the trail head. I haven’t done it, but it looks possible to reach that area by driving through Northville. East of Northville is a lot of back roads that can lead to Edinburgh. There is an airport near there and a very large bridge. From Edinburgh, driving up North Shore rd. toward the conklingville Dam could lead to the other end of Hadley Hill Rd. This route follows along Great Sacandaga Lake.
I climbed this mountain on November 24th. This was a varied hike with a nice finish. It started out with a moderate to steep climb up the ridge. I remember someone at work saying most of these mountain trails were all once dirt. Now they are all eroded. Along the way I was walking on several rock slabs that were slippery. Eventually the climb ended and I found myself high on West Ridge. Straight ahead I could see Hadley peak. I noticed I had a few hundred more feet to climb. After a nice level walk the second climb began. The trail eventually opened up and I was treated to a surprising view of Great Sacandaga Lake toward the south. This was surprising and is a nice finish. Soon the cabin is reached and the tower stands just above on a unique rise. The summit was all open and breezy. Through some of my reading, this tower seems to have a history with wind. The tower was very well kept up with a nice coat of white paint. It was also reinforced by guy wires. The cab was locked. The ascent is around 1500 Ft.
From the summit I could see Great Sacandaga Lake. In picture 1 I show a picture of the lake from the tower. To the right is Ohmer Mountain the former sight engulfed by private land. Somewhere, way to the southwest is Benson. There, a fire tower stands on Cathead Mountain that once was accessible to the public. Today, it’s owned by the state, but locked within private property, closed to the public. Looking down the eastern arm of the lake is the town of Edinburgh. It is split in two by this massive reservoir. The only thing that keeps this town united is the Batchellerville Bridge. It’s a 6 tenth of a mile bridge in structural danger with currently one lane. Construction of a new bridge is in the works. I show it on Youtube. East of the lake is the Kayaderosseras Range. At the edge of this range I could see currently the tallest fire tower in the ADK on Spruce Mountain. Its 73 Ft. tall and I could see it.
Looking east I could see the green mountains in the distance. Closer is the Hudson. It breaks out between the Palmertown and Luzerne Mountains according to the topo maps. It then begins its southern descent straight through the capital region, starting at the Hudson-Glens Falls area. That’s got to be a neat pass. Toward the northeast is Lake George where Black Mountain is. Prospect Mountain at the southern tip of this lake once had a fire tower. Further north, route 8 passes from Brant Lake to Hague. Swede Mountain, with a fire tower, can be found along there. This is another fire tower trapped inside private land. North of route 8 is the Pharaoh Lake Wilderness. At the heart of this area is Pharaoh Mountain, which used to have a fire tower. It was non-conforming to that area and a battle occurred over it. It eventually fell down.
Looking west I noticed Hadley’s neighbor Spruce Mountain. This is another example of mountain names being used over and over again. Beyond that were the central mountains all bunched together. Finally, to the north was Crane, Gore and the high peaks. Crane, I heard, is a beautiful hike. It too had a fire tower once. Gore Mountain has been an enigma for me. I’m finally starting to understand it. In picture 3 the main peak is on the left and I could see the antenna on top. To the right there are two peaks. One of them I believe is Bear Mountain with Topridge ski trail descending down it. A much smaller peak far right could be Burnt Ridge. The high peaks are seen standing tall in the distance beyond Crane and Gore.

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