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(TR. : t. 414 (gross), 1. 168'9", b. 27'9", dr. 16'9" (aft.); s. 12 mph.; cpl. 32)
Utowana (SP-951)—a yacht built in 1891 at Philadelphia, Pa., by Neafie & Levy and rebuilt as a trawler at Staten Island, N.Y., in 1917 for the Commonwealth Fisheries Co., Boston, Mass.—was acquired by the Navy during the summer of 1917 for service as a minesweeper in the 1st Naval District and placed in commission on 30 October 1917, Lt. Comdr. Reuben K. Dyer, NNV, in command.
Though some records indicate that the ship was later renamed Victorine, they give no date for the renaming. Moreover, the trawler was consistently referred to thereafter as Utowana both in official and unofficial publications. In any event, the trawler was assigned to Division 13, Squadron 5, Patrol Force. That organization, made up various types of ships and craft, was responsible for patrol and escort duties overseas. In addition to the European bases such as Brest in France and Queenstown in Ireland, ships of the Patrol Force operated in such diverse areas as the Caribbean and the Azores. While no records have been found indicating where Utowana served before arriving on the French coast early in 1918, she operated briefly at Bermuda and perhaps for a short period at Ponta Delgada in the Azores. It is known that she departed Newport R.I., on 4 November 1917 in company with Hannibal Helenita (SP 210), Margaret (SP-527), Mag (SP164), Rambler (SP-211), and Wenonah (SP 166). Each yacht towed a submarine chaser. After five days at sea and in spite of a breakdown apiece for Margaret, May Helenita and Utowana, the little task group arrived in Hamilton, Bermuda. Apparently, Helenita and Utowana remained behind in Bermuda when the other four yachts-augmented by Cythera (SP-576), Artemis (SP-693), and Lydonia (SP-700) departed Hamilton on 18 November bound for Ponta Delgada. Presumably Utowana-like Helenita-stayed in Bermuda to conduct patrols in surrounding waters, though it is also possible that she remained behind for repairs. Records giving details simply do not exist.
In any event, the former yacht reached the French coast in February 1918. Thereafter, in all probability, she provided escort services to coastal convoys and conducted antisubmarine patrols of French coastal waters. About the time of the armistice, the armed trawler began to assist Favorite (SP-1385) in salvage and repair work. Following the armistice, she probably continued her salvage work. Utowana returned to the United States in August 1919 and was assigned to the 3d Naval District. She was placed out of commission on 11 September 1919. Just over a year later, on 13 September 1920, she was sold to the Denton Shore Lumber Co., Tampa, Fla.
The Marion River Carry Railroad
The Marion River Carry Railroad started in 1900 under Thomas Durant (of first transcontinental railroad fame) who sought to connect the Raquette Lake to Blue Mountain lakes in the Adirondacks. At the time, Durant and his family owned large plots of acreage on which they established hotels, golf courses, local transporation in the form of passenger steam boats (on the many lakes in the area) and railroads -- essentially, the area became a large tourist destination.
Before the Marion River Carry railroad, transport between steamers on the two lakes was crude, and involved walking (while carrying one's luggage) across nearly a mile of marshy land on a rickety boardwalk. More wealthy families opted for a horse-drawn baggage carts. Thomas Durant, visionary that he was, saw the need for a more refined conveyance, thus building the railroad in 1900.
The railroad ran between a steamboat dock on the Marion River, across the intermediate marsh, to a steamboat dock on the Utowana Lake, providing a link between Raquette Lake (via Marion River) and Blue Mountain Lake (via Utowana Lake).
Owing to the popularity of the automobile, and the consequent construction of nearby parallel NY Route 28, the days of the Marion Carry Railroad were numbered, and abandonment eventually came in 1929. Today, the marsh has reclaimed the right-of-way reportedly there is effort to reconstruct the route as a heritage railroad.
At 3/4 of a mile long, the Marion River Carry Railroad garners title of the shortest standard-guage railroad in the United States, and the shortest formal abandonment on the Abandoned Rails website.
In the summer of 2017 I decided to paddle the Eckford Chain of Lakes in the Adirodnacks. We set out one fine August morning from Raquette Lake, crossed the lake, and proceeded up the Marion River, through the carry, putting back in at the Utowana dock, continuing through Utowana Lake into Eagle Lake, and then into Blue Mountain Lake before pulling our boats out at the Blue Mountain beach.
Our conversation (and questions) turned to the name Eckford Chain of Lakes. [Read more…] about Naming the Lakes of the Eckford Chain
Naming the Lakes of the Eckford Chain
In the summer of 2017 the League of Extraordinary Adirondack Gentlemen (LEAG) held their annual camp-out at Great Camp Santanoni on Newcomb Lake.
I met there, for the first time, a gentleman new to the group. As a result of this meeting, he and I decided to expand our friendship and paddle the Eckford Chain: Raquette, Utowana, Eagle, and Blue Mountain lakes.
We set out one fine August morning from Raquette Lake, crossed the lake, and proceeded up the Marion River, through the carry, putting back in at the Utowana dock, continuing through Utowana Lake into Eagle Lake, and then into Blue Mountain Lake and pulled-out at the Blue Mountain beach.
Our conversation (and questions) turned to the name Eckford Chain of Lakes.
What The Historians Say
As it turns out the naming of these lakes changes depending on whom you ask, and what sources they used. Just to show how convoluted this naming business can be, the following are the accounts of three Adirondack historians explaining the early naming of Blue Mountain Lake, Eagle Lake, and Utowana Lake.
The first historian that I consulted was Alfred L. Donaldson. In his book, A History of the Adirondacks, Vol II (1921), Donaldson wrote:
“The water connection between the two lakes [Raquette Lake and Blue Mountain Lake] by way of the Marion River and the two widenings of it known as Utowana and Eagle Lakes . These and Blue Mountain Lake were called the “Eckford Chain” in the early days, after Henry Eckford, a noted engineer and ship builder, who made a survey of the lakes while Robert Fulton was surveying others, under the waterway investigation ordered by the State in 1811. Later Professor Emmons, during his geological survey, named the lakes, beginning with the largest ” Lake Janet” [Blue Mountain Lake]. “Lake Catherine” [Eagle Lake], and “Lake Marion” [Utowana Lake], all for the daughters of Henry Eckford. The last only has survived, as applied to the Marion River. Mr. Durant renamed Utowana, Ned Buntline renamed Eagle, and John. G. Holland renamed Blue Mountain Lake.”
Donaldson went on to say that a very old name for Blue Mountain Lake was Tallow Lake. Apparently man was said to have started across the lake with a load of venison tallow in his canoe, he was over taken by a storm and swamped. Half-heartedly the lake became known as Tallow Lake. Donaldson also wrote that in 1874 the hotel owner and operator John G. Holland noted that some of the guides referred to adjacent mountain Mount Emmons as Blue Mountain (apparently due to it often being tinged with a bluish atmosphere, especially when seen from a distance). Thus, Holland called his hotel The Blue Mountain Hotel on Blue Mountain Lake.
In another historical account of the naming of the Eckford Chain is provided by Ted Aber and Stella King in their book A History of Hamilton County (1965):
“Professor Ebenezer Emmons came to the Eckford Chain in the course of his geological survey in 1836. He suggested the feasibility of a canals for commercial use and gave the bodies of water such canals would connect. Towering Blue Mountain was named Mount Clinch in honor of Charles Powell Clinch, member of the State Assembly and one of the original promoters of the survey. Blue Mountain Lake favored for martin-trapping, was named Lake Janet, in honor of the wife of James Ellsworth DeKay, zoologist of the survey and daughter of Henry Eckford. Eagle Lake was named Lake Eliza. Lake Utowana was Eckford Lake . . . “
But perhaps the most thorough and trusted account of the naming of the Eckford Chain is included in Harold Hochschild “The Emmons Survey and the Eckford Family,” Chapter 6 of his book Township 34: A History of an Adirondack Township in Hamilton County in the State of New York. Hochschild wrote that the first recorded visit to the area was that of Ebenezer Emmons.
Ebenezer Emmons And The Eckford Chain
Ebenezer Emmons was born in 1800 in Middlefield, MA and went to Williams College, graduating in 1818. For his day he was an accomplished scientist – a botanist, geologist, mineralogist, and chemist. He also studied medicine and for a short time had a practice. In 1833 he became the chairman of Natural History at Williams College. In 1836 he was appointed geologist-in- chief of the Second District for the Geological Survey of New York State. It was in that position that he came to the mountains of Hamilton County.
Professor Emmons took five years to make his survey of the Second Geological District, which included the Adirondacks. (Reportedly Ebenezer Emmons was the first to use the term Adirondack Mountains, in his writings.) During the summers of 1836 through 1840 he made extensive trips into the Adirondacks, and each year wrote an extensive report to the New York State Legislature. Emmons did not reach the area of Township 34 (Blue Mountain Lake) until 1840, but he first mentioned the Eckford Chain in his 1838 report. In that report he mentioned the possibility of an extensive system of locks and canals north from the Erie Canal along the Sacandaga River Valley, into the south central Adirondacks, the Eckford Chain (Blue Mountain Lake region), and then into the waterways feeding the St. Lawrence River. He eventually abandoned this idea, due to the number of locks necessary. In 1846 one of his protégées, Farrand N. Benedict would revive the idea of a canal crossing the Adirondacks.
In his Fourth Annual Report (1839), Emmons again referred to the area and named a prominent mountain, Mt Clinch in honor of the Hon. Mr. Clinch of the New York Legislature who was one of the original supporters of the survey. This Mountain is today known as Blue Mountain. (Reportedly the indigenous name for the Mountain was Towarloondah or Towahloondah.) In the following summer (1840) Professor Emmons reached the base of Mt. Clinch (Blue Mountain) and traveled along the three lakes now known as Blue Mountain Lake, Eagle Lake, and Utowana Lake. Emmons and his party approached Mt Clinch (Blue Mountain) from the Cedar River. Traveling up the Connetquet or Canonquet River (today’s Rock River) to Lake Maria (Rock Lake), according to his Fifth Annual Report (1841),
“We soon reached a lake we supposed was the Ragged Lake of one of the hunters, who occasionally came for the purpose of
trapping martin, but in as much as it had not been described or noticed on the maps of the region, we named [it] Lake Janet [now Blue Maintain Lake]. The waters of this Lake are very clear and its boarders indented: its general form is quadrangular. It has eighteen islands. Its eastern shore is mostly rocky and broken while on the southwestern extremity there is some good land . . . It is joined to another lake by a communication of two or three rods, in course of which there is a fall of four or five feet. This is only about half the extent of the preceding, and being also undescribed, we conferred the name Eliza upon it. This communicates with another still, by a short passage, which is five miles in length, and we called Eckford Lake, in honor of the late Henry Eckford, whose fame, as a ship builder is not confined to the Atlantic. These three lakes constitute the Eckford Chain of Lakes, and are truly the upper waters of the Racket [Raquette River]. They lie in a narrow valley, which opens to the south .. .
“Pursing our route from Lake Eckford by its outlet, we soon found it so obstructed with logs and rocks that we were obliged to make a portage of half a mile: this brought to a still and unobstructed passage down a navigable river, but tortuous. This River connects the Eckford Lakes with Racket Lake [Raquette Lake]. We estimate its length about seven miles. We named it the Marion River. It passes through a deep marsh, which in places is a quaking bog of unknown width, and containing an inexhaustible quantity of peat. The most valuable production, however, of this and adjacent bogs is of the larch or tamarack. . . .”
Emmons then reported on his observations of Raquette Lake and the Fulton Chain of Lakes. According to Harold Hochschild, in his final report (1842), Emmons explained that Lake Janet (Blue Mountain Lake) was named for the wife of James Ellsworth DeKay, (one of the surveyors, and naturalists with the Emmons party). Janet was also the daughter of Henry Eckford. Lake Eliza (Eagle Lake) was named for Janet’s younger sister. Eckford Lake (Utowana), was regarded by Emmons as the principal lake of the chain. The Marion River was presumable named for either James DeKay’s daughter or for his mother-in- law. (See accompanying Eckford genealogy)
Also according to Harold Hochschild the motive for the change from Lake Eliza to Lake Catherine (Eagle Lake) may have been the fact that that there was already a Lake Elizabeth nearby, on the way to Long Lake (now known as South Pond). Catherine was the name of James DeKay’s mother and of his favorite niece. In 1842 Professor Emmons was appointed to make an agricultural survey of New York State. This survey took four years to complete and is published in two large volumes. Following this, the North Carolina legislature invited Emmons to undertake a geological survey of that state. He accepted and went south. During his stay in North Carolina the Civil war broke out. His last days are shrouded in mystery, but he died in Brunswick, North Carolina, on October 1, 1863.
Eckford Family Names
The following is Henry Eckford’s family as presented by Ebenezer Emmens in his various legislative reports 1836-1840. The pertinent Eckford names are in bold.
Henry Eckford married Marion Bedell they had three daughters:
1) Their first daughter Sarah married Joseph Rodman Drake and they had a daughter Janet who married George DeKay. Janet and George DeKay had a daughter Catharine.
2) Henry and Marion’s second daughter Janet married James Ellsworth DeKay and they ha a daughter Marion.
3) Henry and Marion’s third daughter Eliza married Gabriel Irving
Hochschild noted in Township 34:
“As to Donaldson’s statement that Henry Eckford had surveyed these lakes while Fulton was surveying others, I am bound to conclude, after long investigation, that Eckford’s visit never took place. It is more likely that he never heard of the waters that bear his name. It was not until eight years after his death were they visited by his son-in- law James DeKay [a member of the Emmons survey]. Robert Fulton was, indeed appointed in April 1811 to a legislative commission created to study canal navigation between the Great Lakes and the Hudson, the commission whose work resulted fourteen years later [in 1825] in the opening of the Erie Canal.”
It is also doubtful that Robert Fulton ever visited the chain of lakes that bears his name. The Historian of the Town of Webb said there is no proof that Fulton ever visited the eight lakes that comprise the Fulton Chain. Robert Fulton did however, serve on the Canal Commission from its inception in 1811 until his untimely death in 1815. At the time of his supposed Fulton Chain survey it is documented that Robert Fulton was busy elsewhere, with other activities, which may be what Donaldson was referring.
Robert Fulton and Henry Eckford were indeed friends. Fulton painted two portraits of the Eckford family, one of Henry Eckford and another of Eckford’s wife Marion, holding one of their daughters. In 1831, Henry Eckford went to Turkey as a representative of the U.S. government to build and sell naval ships to the Sultan. He died in Turkey in 1832, at age 57. His body was returned to the United States for burial in New York City.
Of the three historical accounts of the naming of the Eckford Chain of Lakes, it is Harold Hochschild’s account that was the most extensively researched, and thus the most believable. Hochschild went to great pains to accurately research the reports and journals of Ebenezer Emmons. These reports are part of the Adirondack Museum’s library collection (now the Adirondack Experience) as well as The State of New York Library (Documents of the Assembly of the State of New York).
Having researched this question raised by my paddling companion on our journey through the Eckford Chain, I was fortunate to have been able to share a draft of this piece with him. To my great sadness however, we never had the opportunity to discuss the details as he passed away suddenly while hiking in the Adirondacks in early November. I will miss sharing the lakes, the mountains, and their history with him.
One of the other questions that arose in writing this piece was the meaning of Utowana and Towarloondah (or Towahloondah). With limited research Utowana is said to be an indigenous word meaning “Big Waves” and if you have paddled Utowana Lake it can become very rough, and Towarloondah (Hochschild’s preferred spelling) is also identified as an indigenous word meaning “Hill of Storms”.
Notes About Henry Eckford
Henry Eckford was born in Scotland and emigrated to Canada in 1791 at the age of 16. He became apprenticed to his uncle who had a shipyard on the Lake Ontario near the entrance to the St. Lawrence River. He completed his apprenticeship in 1796, and then emigrated to the United States.
In 1799 or 1800 Eckford moved to Long Island and opened his own shipyard, designing and building three-masted vessels. Eckford began building ships for the United States Navy beginning in 1806. In 1808, he worked with other shipbuilders at Oswego on Lake Ontario constructing the USS Oneida and returned to New York City in 1809.
Eckford continued to build ships in the New York City area until 1812. He offered his services to the infant United States after the outbreak of the War of 1812. He was sent to Lake Ontario to begin building a fleet at Sackets Harbor, where he worked until the end of the war in 1815. After the War of 1812, Eckford returned to New York City to resume military and commercial shipbuilding. I could find no record of Henry Eckford ever being a surveyor.
Henry Eckford traveled through New York State several times to get from New York City to Lake Ontario. The most probable route was by way of the Mohawk River to Oneida Lake, then to Lake Ontario and on to Oswego.
A less like route and much more difficult route, chartered in 1807 by the New York State Legislature, took the traveler up the Hudson River Valley to Glens Falls, Lake George, and across the Adirondacks to Canton. This was the Chester-to-Canton Road, which connected to other roads at the Hudson River near the Glen, then went to the north end of what is now Loon Lake in Chestertown, and turned west straight through Igerna, Olmsteadville, Minerva and on to Newcomb, passing north of Long Lake, south of Tupper Lake and on to Russell. It was partially completed in 1818, and finally completed in 1834 to Canton. (You can see an 1836 map of it here).
Photos from above: Ebenezer Emmons, Lake Janet, and Blue Mountain Lake, by Mike Prescott.
The H.K.H. Award
The Adirondack Experience’s Harold K. Hochschild Award honors the memory of the museum’s founder, whose passion for the Adirondacks, its people, and its environment inspired the creation of this institution, which is dedicated to understanding and promoting the unique regional identity of the Adirondack Park. Through the Harold K. Hochschild Award the Adirondack Experience seeks to recognize, support, and strengthen intellectual and community leaders throughout the Adirondack Park, and to highlight their contribution to the region’s culture and quality of life. It also hopes to encourage others to appreciate that the region’s leadership comes in many forms and from many different communities within the Adirondack Park.
The Award may be given to organizations as well as individuals. Although residency within the Park is not required, the Award is presented in recognition of achievement or service having an obvious connection to or impact on the Adirondack region. The recipient of the Award receives an original copy of Hochschild’s authoritative tome, Township 34, and is honored at the Adirondack Experience’s Benefit Gala in the summer.
Before Blue Mountain Center
The first occupants of the land on which BMC now stands were native Haudenosaunee and Anishnabe people. Warm months brought them to these lakes and others in the central Adirondacks for the district's abundant fish and game. In the winter weather — which often sees temperatures as low as negative 40 degrees Fahrenheit — they returned to their settlements in the warmer, lower valleys of the Mohawk and St. Lawrence Rivers.
Although non-native hunters and trappers probably passed through the area in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, the first recorded non-native visit to the chain of Blue Mountain, Eagle, and Utowana Lakes was not until 1840. The visitor that year was Ebenezer Emmons, Professor of Natural History at Williams College, who was making a survey of the region for the State of New York.
This particular area, incidentally, has always been of special interest to geologists. One reason is that the nearest low ridge you can see just on the other side of Eagle Lake forms the divide between the watersheds of the Hudson and the St. Lawrence Rivers. The water of Eagle Lake reaches the sea off the Gaspe Peninsula of Quebec. Only a few hundred yards away beyond the ridge are ponds which drain, via the Hudson River, into New York Harbor. Scientists believe that before the last Ice Age the waters of Eagle, Blue Mountain, and Utowana Lakes flowed eastward instead of westward, and reached the sea at New York also.
The first person to live for an extended length of time at the site of what is now Blue Mountain Center was, appropriately enough, a writer. Born as Edward Zane Carroll Judson, he wrote under many names, most commonly that of Ned Buntline. A newspaperman, magazine editor, sailor, adventurer, and a prodigious drinker who also picked up a few dollars now and then by lecturing on temperance, Buntline wrote more than 100 popular books, and was the foremost practitioner of what came to be known as the dime novel. Later on in his life, he achieved lasting renown by finding an obscure cavalry scout and christening and promoting him as Buffalo Bill. Songs, plays, biographies and a traveling show followed. Buffalo Bill later broke with Buntline and toured the world with his "Wild West, Rocky Mountain and Prairie Exhibition," which included bucking broncos and stagecoach robbery, but Buntline continued to collect royalties.
Between 1856 and 1862, Ned Buntline lived on and off in a cabin whose remains are now visible a few yards toward the lake from the Center's south porch. Buntline seems to have passed his time here writing, trout fishing, drinking and fathering children by two of his six wives, and perhaps, according to local legend, by other women in the vicinity as well. He also wrote a poem of praise to his lakeside homestead, whose final stanza is:
Where the rolling surf laves the emerald turf,
Where the trout leaps high at the hovering fly,
Where the sportive fawn crops the soft green lawn,
And the crows shrill cry bodes a tempest nigh—
There is my home—my wildwood home.
Buntline departed to fight in the Civil War and did not return here. Around the site of his house, a succession of local farmers grew rye and raised cows for much of the next 40 years.
Beginning in 1899, a number of buildings started going up around the old Buntline property, erected by William West Durant, a railroad baron's son and an ambitious though unsuccessful entrepreneur in the Adirondacks. Between 1890 and 1910, the central Adirondacks were extremely fashionable as a summer resort Durant tried to take advantage of this by building steamboats and a railroad line, and by converting the farmland around Buntline's former house into a golf course. He had great plans for the creation of a country club and resort, of which what is now BMC's main building was to be the centerpiece. He got as far as staging an exhibition golf match by one of the leading professionals of the day, and the country club ran for a season or two. But in the midst of further building, Durant went bankrupt.
In 1904 Durant's creditors sold the land and buildings to a group of four New Yorkers who, over the next several decades, used the property as summer homes for their families. They also rented some buildings to friends. Various other sales and subdivisions took place over the years. In recent decades the clubhouse was occupied by the late Harold Hochschild, a New York businessman and a son of one of the original 1904 purchasers. On his death in 1981, he left the house along with an endowment to maintain it, for use as a writers' colony and conference center.
During the last decades of the 19th century, visitors to Blue Mountain Lake had an arduous 26-hour journey from New York City overnight boat to Albany, a stretch by train, and then an eight-hour stagecoach ride over a road so rough passengers had to be strapped in. By 1900 the trip was a much pleasant one: it then became possible to take an overnight train to the village of Raquette Lake, 10 miles west of Eagle Lake. The remaining distance was covered by steamboat, except for a very short shuttle journey by a small steam railway, alongside a stretch of river rapids too rough for boats. The first asphalt highway to the area was not completed until 1929.
History of Utowana - History
Curry's Cottages is located on the beautiful shore of Blue Mountain Lake in the central Adirondack Mountains region. We have seven housekeeping cottage rental units - one, two and or three bedrooms. Our season runs from early June until early October. During peak season, July and August, weekly rentals are reserved from Saturday to Saturday. We will rent for a 2 night min. stay if a cottage is vacant.
For more information on workshops and events that are coming to Blue Mountain, please vist the Adirondack Lake Center for the Arts.
The Indian Lake Chamber of Commerce is a great resource for information on events and information on the Blue Mountain Lake Area.
About the Cottages
Curry's is one of the oldest family run businesses in Hamilton County, It was started in the early 1900's by David and Katherine Curry, a lumberman and his wife, the school teacher at the one room, Blue Mt. schoolhouse. It is now managed by Robert Curry and Carrie with the help of 5th generation son , Kyle and daughter, Reed.
Blue Mountain Lake is a hamlet, part of the Town of Indian Lake, in the very central portion of the Adirondack Park. Don't let the towns small size discourage though, the possibilities are endless. Hiking, fishing, RELAXING, and boating, you can do it all. Even if the weather isn't so nice, there are a number of local museums and other destinations that serve as perfect rainy day activities. The Adirondack Experience , located in Blue Mountain, provides excellent information on all things Adirondack. The Wild Center , Tupper Lake, N.Y., offers a great place to learn about the natural history of the Adirondack Park.
Curry's is very boater friendly. You can use our canoe, kayak and sun-fish, or bring your own boat. We have a boat launch, boat dock, and separate boat only beach. It should be noted that Blue Mountain Lake does have a no jet ski policy. Boaters can enjoy access to many of the islands on Blue Mountain Lake, as well as access to Eagle and Utiwonna Lakes. All three lakes are accessible by ski boat, and are well marked. Paddlers that are more adventurous can take the Marion River at the end of Utowana Lake to Raquette Lake. A canoe route can be followed to Old Forge or Saranac Lake. Power boat rentals and gas can be found at the local marina. Blue Mountain Lake is a relatively small lake, so some larger boats may be to large. All boats entering Blue Mountain Lake must be clean and free of any plant or aquatic life.
There are miles of hiking trails in the immediate vicinity of Curry's Cottages. Nearby Castle Rock and Blue Mountain provide panoramic views of Blue Mountain Lake and the surrounding area. Blue Mountain Lake is just a short drive from the high peaks, were the 46 highest peaks in New York State are located. More information can be found at: Adirondacks.com We have a local hiking map available.
- Blue Mountian
- Castle Rock
- Goodnow Mountain
- Owls Head Mountain
- Snowy Mountain
- Sawyer Mountain
- Wilson Pond
- Tirrell Pond
- Rock Pond
- Rock Lake
- Stephens Pond
- Cascade Pond
Things to Note
Grocery stores are hard to come by in the Adirondacks. Besides a few local gas stations the nearest grocery store is nearly an hour drive from Blue Mountain. There is a farm truck that comes once weekly where farm fresh produce can be purchased. From the lack of grocery stores in the area we recommend you stop at one of the larger grocery stores to stock up. Below is a list of the grocery stores and their distance from Curry's.
Basic Grocer&mdash Long Lake, N.Y. (15 min.)
Tops&mdash North Creek, N.Y (40 min.)
Shaheens&mdash Tupper Lake, N.Y. (45 min.)
Big M&mdash Old Forge, N.Y. ( 45 min.)
Price Chopper-- Warrensburg, NY (45 min.)
Price Chopper/Hannaford&mdash Lake Placid, N.Y. (1hr)
Price Chopper / Hannaford&mdash Glens Falls, N.Y (1hr 15 min)
Price Chopper / Hannaford&mdash Utica, N.Y. (1hr 30 min)
Curry's and Blue Mountain Lake is home to a number of yearly event and workshops.
Toward the end of summer the Adirondack Experience sponsors the Rustic Furniture and Antique shows. Vendors line the streets selling their goods. Event website
The fall also brings about a paddling club and workshop. Please visit their website for further information. Event website
The first day of the great 3 day 90 Miler canoe race through the Adks. ends on our beach.
If you would like to host a group or workshop at Curry's feel free to contact us with questions.
Blue Mountain Lake
The quaint lakeside hamlet of Blue Mountain Lake has been charming visitors ever since the Gilded Age, when affluent citizens and industry leaders from New York City would vacate the hot and muggy city to retreat to the refreshing lakeside resorts of the Adirondacks. In 1882 the luxurious Prospect House in Blue Mountain Lake became the first hotel in the world to have electricity in every room. It was engineered by none other than frequent Blue Mountain Lake visitor Thomas Edison. When you are in town, make sure to board one of the antique wooden boats with Crabby Bob at Blue Mountain Lake Boat Livery and learn first-hand about this hamlet's rich history.
Where culture and natural beauty come together
Today, Blue Mountain Lake represents a cultural hub in the heart of the of the Adirondack Park. It is home of the world-famous Adirondack Experience, The Museum On Blue Mountain Lake, a museum with exhibits that tell the unique story of the Adirondacks and the people who have lived, worked, and played within the park throughout history. A short distance down the road from the Adirondack Experience, you will find the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts, a multi-disciplinary arts center, which celebrates art, music, professional theater, and community events set against the breathtaking natural beauty of Blue Mountain Lake.
Four seasons of fun
Blue Mountain Lake is a haven for year-round outdoor recreation. From paddling the crystal clear waters of Blue Mountain Lake, Eagle Lake, and Utowana Lake to hiking up Blue Mountain (one of the Adirondack's most popular peaks) or the more family-friendly peak of Castle Rock, opportunity for adventure in Blue Mountain Lake is endless. Of course, no summer in Blue Mountain Lake is complete without making the time-honored tradition of taking the plunge off Rock Island, this hamlet's beloved swimming hole. In the winter the fun continues with ice fishing and endless miles of snowmobiling, cross-country skiing and snowshoe trails.
It’s hard for many of us to imagine the early days of travel in the Adirondacks. There were no roads north of Old Forge, and the titans of the American industrial revolution laid railroad tracks to carry them from Utica to the Old Forge lakefront dock. The journey further north to the great camps, hunting retreats, cottages and summer resorts required a series of steamboats, carriages, more rails, and more steamers.
In “The Heydays of the Adirondacks,” Maitland DeSormo’s father-in-law, Fred Hodges, detailed in his notebooks how the Clearwater was the first leg of the excursion to Blue Mountain Lake. “By 8:30 in the morning on those red letter days, the people would have gathered on the docks along the Lake. The Clearwater would pick them up and take them as far as Eagle Bay. There they would board the train for the ten-mile trip to Raquette Lake, where other steamers waited for them. Then came the trip across Raquette Lake, up the Marion River and its hairpin curves to the Carry. Here they would climb into the old Brooklyn open trolley cars and be drawn by the dinky locomotive the half-mile distance to the foot of Utowana Lake.
At that point the Tuscarora, the Clearwater’s twin, would take them through the lake and Eagle and past the swinging bridge at the entrance to Blue Mountain Lake.
Then came the unforgettable and all too-short trip across that lake to the steamboat landing. The return trip started at 5:00 p.m. Then over the same course in reverse and back to Cohasset Point (on Fourth Lake) by 9:30 or 10:00 p.m.
Now that same five-hour journey into the heart of the Central Adirondacks can be accomplished in just under an hour’s drive.
Today, there’s still plenty of nature to enjoy in the Central Adirondacks hunting, fishing, canoeing, hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting and you can get there in half the time. But you can still enjoy portions of the journey our predecessors undertook each summer.
Though the tracks no longer reach the Old Forge lakefront, you can still hop aboard the Adirondack Scenic Railroad in Utica and ride the rails through the Adirondack foothills to the Thendara station. Or climb aboard in Thendara for an intimate woodland experience venturing into some of the most pristine and remote areas in the Adirondacks. Be sure to check the schedule or the Loomis Gang might surprise you.
Diesel and gasoline engines may have replaced steam, but Old Forge Lake Cruises is keeping the historic waterway journeys alive in the Central Adirondacks. The Clearwater follows the steamers’ old route through the first four lakes of the Fulton Chain. Our 2 hour narrated cruise will point out historic points of interest and great camps, as well as share the history and folklore of this unique region.
So take a journey back in time to a bygone era and experience first hand the history and character that built this region.
Utowana returned to the United States in August 1919 and was assigned to the 3d Naval District. She was placed out of commission on 11 September 1919. Just over a year later, on 13 September 1920, she was sold to the Denton Shore Lumber Co., Tampa, Florida.
In the mid-1920s, "Utowana" was purchased by Allison V. Armour and refitted for scientific exploration (1926 - 1927) in the Canary Islands, the Balearic Islands, Southeast Asia, and West Africa. Source: The story appears in David Fairchild's book "Exploring for Plants" (1930), pp.ف – 2, 221 (Grand Canary and Lanzarote), 234 (Balearic Islands), Ceylon (282), and West Africa (457). A photo of Utowana after refitting appears on p.ى. On p.𧍄 Fairchild again refers to the Utowana expedition. David Fairchild's later book "The World Grows Round My Door" (1947) says that the yacht "disappeared in the explosions of war" (307). He mentions yellowing photographs.