LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — The Adirondack Land Trust today announced the purchase of 187 acres in the town of North Elba to protect one of the most iconic views in the Adirondacks. The tract is bordered by State Route 73, the Adirondack Loj Road, Forest Preserve, and private land and features forest and grassland habitats. From the property, there are stunning views of the High Peaks Wilderness, the Olympic ski jumps, and Whiteface Mountain.
The Adirondack Land Trust bought the property for $2.365 million from the McBurney family, who cared for the property for more than 60 years. The Adirondack Land Trust will retain ownership to create a signature recreation and conservation area. The nonprofit organization will raise an additional $2.5 million for long-term management and stewardship costs.
“This vista provides a first impression and lasting memory for millions of visitors and is a source of pride and inspiration for local residents,” said Mike Carr, executive director of the Adirondack Land Trust. “In its breathtaking grandeur, the view forms an indelible bond with the Adirondack landscape. The Adirondack Land Trust will ensure the property’s natural and scenic values are forever conserved.”
While the view is always open, the property will remain closed to the public while the land trust studies the land before embarking on a planning process with community input to broaden access opportunities. Accessible features could include trails with wide, durable surfaces on low-grade inclines conducive to wheelchairs, strollers, walking aids, and those who prefer a walk in the woods to an alpine scramble.
This site represents one of 38 scenic vistas identified by the Adirondack Park Agency as integral to the park’s essence and character. Many of these vistas throughout the Adirondacks can be seen from a road shoulder adjacent to private land that does not allow public access.
“It’s powerful to imagine families heading out to the scenic vista and user-friendly trails to connect with nature,” said Carr. “The location close to town will enhance quality of life in ways that can help attract and retain residents.”
“That vista is a photo magnet. It is difficult to drive by without stopping. I frequently go there looking for photos – all times of day, night, sunrise, sunset, to see the changing weather and changing scenery in that one stunning view. It feeds my soul with WOW and a heartfelt appreciation for living in these magical mountains. We are so blessed,” said Nancie Battaglia, renowned photographer whose work has been published in countless publications from the New York Times to National Geographic magazine.
From left to right: Gwen Neill, Ophelia Bailey, Etta Neill and Sverre Bailey jump for joy on the field located at the corner of State Route 73 and Adirondack Loj Road. The field, now owned by the Adirondack Land Trust, was farmed by their grandparents Ron and Beth Edgley from 1983 to 2012 and was then known as the Windy Mountain Farm. The Edgleys sold New York Certified Seed Potatoes up and down the eastern seaboard for more than 30 years. Photo by Erika Bailey.