On Whiteface Mountain

September 23, 2012


Ever hear of Whiteface Mountain? It’s in the Adirondack Mountain range. It’s also where the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics were held. I am madly in love with Whiteface Mountain. We went up to the summit last week.

It’s the only ADK mountain you can drive up (near to) the summit. Franklin Delano Roosevelt apportioned funds for the highway, called the World War Veterans’ Memorial Highway, when he was governor of New York State. The highway is very steep with several hairpin turns.

Whiteface Veterans memorial Highway 2

Because FDR was in a wheelchair, he could not climb to the summit. In his dedication speech, he hoped that someday a path would be made for people with mobility problems. Several years later, an elevator was built. You walk through a 480-foot pathway into the mountain, and take the elevator up 271 feet!

Whiteface Elevator Summit

This takes you to an observation tower. You can walk out of the tower and go right out on top of the summit.

Whiteface Atmospheric Sciences Research Center

Whiteface Summit Overlook Lake Placid

It was one of the most exhilarating moments in my life. I wish we could have stayed all day up there.

Whiteface Summit Elevation

Eventually, we walked down the 1/5-mile nature trail, a steep, rocky path built onto one of the ridges of the summit.

Whiteface Summit Nature Trail 5

We sadly made our way back into the valleys. While in Lake Placid, I experienced a strange physical sensation. I felt marvelously strong. My muscles seemed to adore the mountain air, and I felt invigorated in a way I hadn’t felt in many years. No wonder people in Lake Placid are so healthy and active.

Whiteface Veterans Memorial Highway 8

On that note, I’ll leave you with an interesting Ripley’s Believe It or Not comic we saw at the Lake Placid Olympic Center Museum. I can certainly understand this, now!

Lake Placid Speed Skating Team BION

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4 Responses to “On Whiteface Mountain”

  1. Karen and Gerard Says:

    What an exciting adventure! That elevator in a mountain sounds pretty scary to me. My first thought was what if it got stuck!

    • Rebecca Says:

      Karen and Rena — The elevator has been there since … 1948 or so, I think. I don’t think it’s ever gotten stuck. But even so, there’s lot of space outside the elevator, as I could see it behind the gate. I think there’s more of a chance a person would get hit by a car crossing the sidewalk than getting stuck in an elevator! It was fun to go up, but it was a little stuffy and cramped inside. Still, the ride up only takes about 2 minutes. And once you get to the summit, the elevator ride is quickly forgotten! šŸ™‚

  2. Rena Says:

    Oh wow I didn’t know there was an elevator! How long does it take to get to the observation tower in the elevator?

    I was thinking the same thing as Karen mentioned above…what if the
    elevator got stuck? I am such a wuss when it comes to things that move
    or involved heights. šŸ˜Æ

  3. Chuck Says:

    If the idea is to make us want to visit, it worked. šŸ™‚