The washout on Adirondack Loj Road, which is the only access to the Adirondack Mountain Club’s Adirondak Loj.
The village is in pretty good shape following Hurricane Irene, which hit the region Aug. 28. That’s according to Lake Placid Mayor Craig Randall.
“We weathered the storm very, very well, certainly compared to the communities around us,” Randall said, adding he had since offered assistance to Keene.
There have been no reported injuries in the Lake Placid area, according to Randall. Village crews had been out all day Aug. 28 and into the night. The following day, power crews and the highway department were out with chainsaws clearing debris.
Local roads closed include River Road, Rt. 73 to Keene, and Rt. 86 to Wilmington, according to the village website.
“The main clean up, if you drove up Main St. this morning early, was already done,” Randall said Aug. 29. “Things almost look like there wasn’t a storm. But when you get off on the side streets, they’re out there working on those now.”
That said a major portion of the municipal beach dock broke loose from its moorings, Randall said. The new tennis courts are covered with tree debris. People on the Adirondack Loj Rd. may be stranded up to two days until the bridges there are declared safe.
Randall said he did not yet have a monetary assessment of damages Lake Placid suffered as a result of the storm, though the electric department likely lost some transformers.
“The biggest expense that we’re probably going to have is the overtime associated with everybody working yesterday and continuing to work on cleanup,” the mayor said. “Those are immediate expenses that I’m aware of. Beyond that, we’ll see what we have for road damage.”
On the afternoon of Aug. 30, Congressman Chris Gibson, representing New York’s 20th district, was scheduled to be visiting the village, Randall said.
“What was originally intended as a town hall forum at the High Peaks resort probably is going to turn into more of a damage assessment,” the mayor said.
Bucky Hayes, fire police captain for the Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department, said the bridge by the Lake Placid ski jumps had been moved 8 or 9 inches by the storm. According to the mayor, for the first time ever, so far as he was aware, water had gone over the bridge.
Francesca Casaregola, of Albany, said she was staying at the Pines Inn of Lake Placid, where the power went out four times, the night of Aug. 28. The owner knocked on everyone’s door to make sure everyone was all right, started a fire to provide lumination, and distributed wine.
“It was fun,” Casaregola said the next morning. “Hopefully when we go back to Albany today the roads aren’t closed.”
Pirouz Agharokh, of Ottawa, Canada, said his family’s stay at the Crown Plaza in Lake Placid was less pleasant.
“The power went out,” Agharokh said. “The hot tub went down. The pool temperature went down…Water was coming in from the air conditioning system. It was leaking from the window.”
J.P. Brody, of Seattle, Wash., said the storm had affected his plans.
“It’s kept us sitting in town drinking lattes,” Brody said. “We were going to look around here for trails to hike. Then we were told some of the roads were closed to get to the trails.”
Pnina and Saul Powell, of Long Island, said they had to take an unanticipated route to Lake Placid due to the storm.
“We wounded up going about 150 miles out of our way to get in here because all the roads are blocked off,” Saul said.
A representative from the State Police in Ray Brook said Aug. 29 no one from the organization was available to speak with Denton Publications as the police were too busy.
DEC assessing damage
Department of Environmental Conservation spokesperson David Winchell said the agency had been involved in evacuating residents in Keene left stranded by flooding of the East Branch of the AuSable River, in addition to helping other communities.
“We have people in the field — you know forest rangers and ECOs (environmental conservation officers) — that dealt with rescues in communities yesterday and today, particularly in Keene,” Winchell said.
The DEC is currently taking stock of damage to campgrounds, backcountry facilities and determining the location of people in the backcountry according to a press release provided by the agency.
Preliminary reports, according to the release, are that there are a number of bridges washed away and trails severely eroded in the Eastern High Peaks, Dix and Giant Wilderness. The Marcy Dam Bridge was washed downstream; that crossing is impassable.
There were a few campers who did not heed warnings, according to the release, but so far all who the DEC has made contact with are doing fine. One backcountry search and rescue effort related to the storm was a rescue of three canoeists from Northville that were stranded on the Sacandaga River. They went out after the storm and passed and waters were high and flipped the canoe. They were rescued without any incident and were not injured.
The DEC had significant blowdown at a number of its campgrounds and is working on tree removal and getting electricity back, according to the release. The DEC asks people stay out of the backcountry as it expects significant blowdown, flooded areas, and severe erosion. DEC will make a determination by the end of Aug. 29 based on its assessments of whether to continue that advisory or focus it on certain hard hit areas.