Have I ever mentioned how much I love fall? I do, despite the rain and the general irritation of having to rake and mow and put things to bed for the winter. I love it.

Why? Because in this part of the country you have glorious, incredible trees that change colour and shed their leaves in a pattern that is difficult to predict but spectacular to observe.

I love fall (and the outdoors when it isn’t snowing, in general), but I don’t have any friends who both like to hike and have the time to do so. I decided that I should go on a little road trip to enjoy the leaves and asked my (retired) parents in they wanted to go with. After a fair bit of negotiation on the itinerary, we decided to leave from Ottawa on Thursday morning and spend the day driving to Lake Placid, NY, sort of in the northeast quadrant of the Adirondack State Park. Then on Friday we’d do some kind of sightseeing thing and then drive from there to Syracuse. Then on Saturday we’d hit Target and the outlets and come home.

Can I just say that the trip through the Park was one of the most awesome experiences ever? It took us a while to get there (we got lost trying to get to the border! doh!), but once we were in the Park itself… wow. I took some awesome photos, which I hope show up well on your screen.

There’s nothing like a brilliant red maple leaf to make you feel patriotic, is there? One like this?

Red maple leaf, green lily pad

This red leaf was an experiment for my mum. She picked it up and wanted to make a great photo from it. It certainly looks good with the green lily pad, doesn’t it?

ADK highway

The leaves on the side of the highway to Saranac Lake in the Park. Yes, we stopped at the side of the road more than once to take photos. We’re cool like that.


A bunch of state cops were paused on the highway, standing in the middle of the road talking to each other. They had blown past us (going way under the speed limit) and dad had to inch past them in the road (they didn’t move, cause they’re clearly power mad jackasses), and they made a little fun of us. Whatever. Those leaves were worth the mockery.

tree on FIRE!

See what I’m saying?

Paul Smith VIC

I had to pee, so Dad pulled into a rest stop that turned out to have hiking trails behind it. What an incredible find (Paul Smith VIC or visitor interpretation centre). Clean bathrooms AND great, groomed trails with unbelievable views. Below is a pic of my mum working on her Project 365 entry of the day.

Mum taking photos

This leaf happened to be hanging out in a tree on the trail. I was all over it like a dirty shirt.

Maple leaf

The funny thing about many of the leaves we saw was that they were multicoloured. So each leaf would be green and red or gold and red or green and gold. It was quite remarkable up close.

Leaves mid-change

This is about when my memory card became full. I’ll dig up the rest of hte photos for another post later.

On the whole, I think this is the best activity I could have engaged in. The Park is fun to drive through (lots of curves and small towns), Lake Placid was beautiful, and I slept like you would NOT believe. Man, it was a great three days. The first night I slept around 11 hours and woke up naturally feeling great!

On the gut front, not great, but manageable. Occasionaly stabbing pain, always after I eat. Had to stop and buy tylenol once, and lost my food twice. But, on the whole, it’s easing off a bit. I think. I don’t want to overcommit, you know?

Great trip. I’m going to try to get to the Mackenzie King estate this week, if it stops raining (and maybe even if it doesn’t, since I have grippy climbing shoes!). The weather is cooling off (awesome), and I’ve got a great week of food planned out. My oven still works, even if my cooktop doesn’t, so I’ve got some good roasting and baking plans ahead. And! Three workouts with Trainer Ana. Because I can.