Many people flock to Lake Placid because the Adirondacks fall foliage is stunning! Do not just drive the winding roads, which are worth the drive! But go for hikes or different activities. I highly recommend you check out if you're planning a trip to the Adirondacks, check out Whiteface Mountain's Oktoberfest.
Whiteface mountain is a well-known ski mountain for the northeast region of the United States. Whiteface Mountain is in Wilmington, New York. The ski resort is run by the Olympic Regional Development Authority. Whiteface is part of the 46 high peaks of the Adirondack Park.
If you're in Lake Placid, you can see this high peak from Mirror Lake. To get a fantastic view, go up to the Crowne Plaza Lake Placid. They have an excellent restaurant and bar to enjoy. This can be another location stay for a weekend.
You have two purchase options: get a ticket before your arrival or get one at the door. Buying at the door, you don't get a stein with your ticket. The benefit of buying online, you'll get a gondola ride, drink, and stein.
Where is Whiteface?
Located in Wilmington, New York, in Adirondack State Park. Located 2 hours from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, 5 hours from NYC, and 5 hours from the Finger Lakes.
Where to stay?
KOA site is a 5-minute drive, and the location sells out quickly. We booked in July, and it was almost entirely sold out. I speak to this campsite in the blog post when a group of friends went for a long weekend. This post includes info about the site and the history of Lake Placid.
For this stay and October being colder weather, we got the Deluxe Cabin. If you are a small family of four, this would be ideal. However, for 6 grown adults, this cabin was a bit of a struggle for us to fit. There were a set of bunk beds, a queen bed, and a pull-out couch. The pull out bed had an air mattress.
We also had our own issues where a friend forgot a tent, and the other had a piece missing from his hammock, making that, not an option. We ended up having to squeeze 8 adults in which made for a special weekend.
What is the setup for Whiteface's Oktoberfest?
Oktoberfest is a two-day event. You can see everything you need in a day, we got the two-day pass to see if there was a difference each day. I recommend getting the two-day pass because it includes a pass to take the gondola up to the top of Little Whiteface. Included in your ticket is also one free drink.
Like many American Oktoberfest, there are different vendors sharing food or homemade goods. There is a range of vendors from homemade syrup, soaps, food, and many other locally sourced items.
What To Do:
Arrive at Oktoberfest, you will get your own stein - it is plastic for safety purposes. For Oktoberfest, you get the option of beers, and in your search at the small locations, you can find cider! I am personally not a beer person. I have tried some beers over the years, but nothing has been something I love! I am more of a cider, wine, or mixed drink person.
Stay till it gets dark the first night, there is a firework show!
There are many options of your choice. If you go with a group, I recommend splitting up, so some go and get foods, and others get drinks. It will be helpful to save time because lines can really get long! I would plan to bring food to cook at the campsite. Most restaurants are a distance, there is a Price Chopper in Lake Placid that you can pick up all your supplies.
Items needed for campsite cooking:
- Coleman Stove
- Pam or olive oil
- Propane tank
- Cutting board
- Dish soap
- Towel to clean pans
Oktoberfest food has hefty servings. I got a leg of meat that was so massive and challenging to eat. I actually brought it with me to the top of Whiteface. I thought it would be an epic photo with a lamb leg and the views at the top. No idea, that at that same moment, a guy was getting ready to propose.
Start the weekend by doing this! It can be a bit of a line going up the gondola, we got drinks and brought them up with us. At the top of Little Whiteface, you get to enjoys the views, but there are no vendors or drinks at the top. I would recommend bringing your steins to the top. You get an amazing view and it won't be very crowded.
This does not go all day, there is a cut off time. Keep this in mind for when you plan to head up or down the mountain.
Whiteface Veterans' Memorial Highway:
Take this scenic drive and enjoy each turn off for the view of the High Peak region. As the elevation increases, you won't want to miss those viewpoints to get a different perspective. Many people have taken wedding or engagement photos at the top. I actually photobombed a proposal; I had no idea!
There is an admission fee to drive the scenic highway. When we drove to the top, the elevator was closed, and it started pouring on a different trip. We were allowed to return the following day with our passes present. Be sure to check with the booth and employees before assuming! It is $15 per car and then additional fees for the number of people in the car.
Whiteface is New York's fifth-highest peak at 4,967 feet. Be mindful of your car's speed going up and down the mountain, you might encounter cyclists riding up and down the mountain. You wouldn't want to have a bad experience, be mindful of your surroundings. There is a guard rail or stone wall, but at some point, there is no guard. Do not speed going up or down.
When you get to the top, I recommend taking the elevator to the summit and climbing the walking path back to the parking lot. Entering the tunnel for the elevator up is a unique experience. The temperatures drop! You're inside the mountain and get to take an elevator up it!
Bring a light jacket as the summit will be windy and cooler temperature than the bottom of the mountain. You will have 360-degree views of the high peak region. Bring your camera! You will want photos of the view. From here you can see Mirror Lake and Lake Placid Lake. Don't forget to get a picture in front of the sign!
I grew up with a vacation home in Jay, New York, about 25 minutes away from Whiteface. Showing my friends an area I spent as a kid was a special experience. The Jay Bridge was originally built in 1857, it is now listed as a historic place.
In the summer you will see families flock to the water area and enjoy the swimming holes. With the Jay Bridge in the background it makes more the perfect setting. I recommend coming here for the sunrise. The bridge is a great focal point.
Plan to make a long weekend of it?
Oktoberfest at Whiteface is a unique experience. Whether you go for a day or two days, make the most out of your experience. We stayed there for a long weekend since it is a four and a half-hour drive from where I live in Northern New Jersey. The first two days of the trip were spent enjoying Oktoberfest, enjoying the local area, and having a relaxed time.
On the third day, we did a long hike which I shared in this blog post if you're looking for a challenge I suggest doing Little Haystack. After the hike, we got food at the Cottage in Lake Placid, which is right on Mirror Lake. After this, we enjoyed a quiet night before heading out the next day. We finished the weekend off with walking around Mirror Lake before hitting the road.
Facts & Attractions of Whiteface Mountain:
Whiteface Memorial Highway was the first of its kind in the East
Memorial road was opened in 1936
American currency is in American dollars and cents
Whiteface features 90 ski trails, 11 lifts and is the largest East of the Rockies
I hope you enjoyed hearing about my trip to Lake Placid, New York. If you have any questions about the area, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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