It’s that time of year again, folks. The spooky season is upon us, and as October comes to an end, we ascend towards maximum levels of spookiness. In the fall, the Adirondack Hub becomes the Haunted Hub, giving thrill seekers and ghost-hunters alike the chance to get their blood pumping. As Halloween approaches, so does the search for something scary in the Haunted Hub.
The Ghost Town of Tahawus
Could there be a better place to ghost hunt than in an actual ghost town? The village of Tahawus was once a busy mining village that was located in what is now the town of Newcomb, NY. Tahawus, or Adirondac, was founded in 1826 after iron ore was discovered on the banks of the Upper Hudson. In 1858, the town was deserted for the first time as complications arose with mining operations. Tahawus would be repopulated in 1941 during a second attempt at mining the area. Like it had before, the mine would shut down again in 1989, leaving the ghost town that stands today. Today, you can hike through the abandoned mining area, explore the remnants of the town that once flourished, and read some informative historical signage along the way. But be warned, the appearance of the deserted town looks like something you’d see in a horror film, and to this day, local legends swirl about ghost sightings and supernatural occurrences.
Between present day Minerva and Newcomb is where you will find Aiden’s Lair, a popular supernatural adventure seeker destination. While the abandoned Aiden’s Lair is certainly creepy, it also has significant historical significance, which only adds to the lore of this once luxurious lodge. On September 6, 1901, President McKinley was shot twice by anarchist Leon Czolgosz while in Buffalo, NY. At the time of the shooting, then Vice President Theodore Roosevelt was on Isle La Motte on Lake Champlain. Upon hearing the news, Roosevelt began his route to Buffalo to be with President McKinley. Not long thereafter, Roosevelt was informed that the operation was a success and was told not to return to Buffalo at that time. Then, on September 13th, things became dire. While hiking Mount Marcy, Roosevelt was informed that McKinley’s condition had suddenly taken a turn for the worse. Upon hearing this, Roosevelt set off on what would become known as the “Midnight Ride to the Presidency”. During that ride, Roosevelt stopped at Aiden’s Lair to stretch his legs and exchange his current transportation for a fresh horse and wagon before embarking on the rest of the ride to Buffalo. Aiden’s Lair is chalked full of historical significance and serves as a supernatural adventure destination in the Adirondacks.
Great Camp Santanoni
Built in 1893, Great Camp Santanoni was part of the original wave of Great Camps in the Adirondacks. Wealthy individuals of the time began vacating cities in the summer and relocating their families to open spaces so they could relax and have some “space to breathe” in the warmer months. The Adirondacks (as it does today) provided that refuge. Eventually, The Great Camp came into the possession of the Melvin Family. Tragically, during one of their traditional family vacations in 1971, a member of their extended family named Douglas Legg disappeared into the woods with little trace, never to be seen again. Extensive measures were taken in the search, and a rescue team of hundreds, including law enforcement, volunteers, and even private investigators, searched at great lengths through the Adirondack Forest to find the boy who had gone missing. Sadly, he was never found and no body was ever recovered. Following the gut-wrenching tragedy, Camp Santanoni was sold to New York State and reopened in the early 2000’s as a state park. Today, the buildings remain, and the legend continues to grow. Stories of supernatural phenomena can easily be found on social media platforms or with a quick Google search. The overwhelming opinion by those who have hiked the area is clear: there is a presence in the woods around Great Camp Santanoni that lives on to this day.
Plan your Scare-cation
Add each historical site to your scare-cation itinerary and get spooked this season, or maybe take the entire Haunted Adirondacks trip for yourself. After that, find a place to stay that isn't haunted, find something to eat, and maybe something to do to unwind after your own supernatural experience. Spend this spooky season getting terrified in the Haunted Hub!