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  • Giant or Phelps Mountain

    Hello! We are going to the Adirondaks and want to take my 9 year old hiking. My husband has been told that Giant and Phelps are appropriate for kids. My son has asthma and is overweight. I am worried about setting him up for failure or worse putting in a situation where he could get hurt. Am I worried for nothing? Any advice you can give me would be most appreciated. Thanks!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Jennhart View Post
    Hello! We are going to the Adirondaks and want to take my 9 year old hiking. My husband has been told that Giant and Phelps are appropriate for kids. My son has asthma and is overweight. I am worried about setting him up for failure or worse putting in a situation where he could get hurt. Am I worried for nothing? Any advice you can give me would be most appreciated. Thanks!
    Both have their steep places. Giant is a bigger hike altogether.

    Here's a link to lake placid area hikes. Note Owl's Head is closed weekends
    Baxter is an easier one with a view.
    http://www.lakeplacid.com/do/outdoor...1-2-Hour-Hikes

    Don

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    • #3
      Adirondacks is huge! It is not limited to Giant and Phelps.

      If you are worried as a parent of taking your son hiking, who has asthma and is overweight, why not ask his doctor for advice? And if you are " worried about setting him up for failure or worse putting in a situation where he could get hurt," why even think about taking him hiking? My advice: take him to a nice boat ride on Lake George. He would love it.

      Instead of taking him hiking, just because you may want to, why don't you ask him if he wants to hike? When I was 9, I did not want to hike!

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      • #4
        Has he gone hiking in the past? If not, I absolutely would not start him off with a High Peak. That definitely is setting up for failure. The link Hear the Footsteps posted has a number of shorter, less steep hikes to get his feet wet and gauge how he'll do and whether he enjoys being in the woods. Start from there and, if he enjoys it and can handle it, work your way up.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by peskypup View Post
          Has he gone hiking in the past? If not, I absolutely would not start him off with a High Peak. That definitely is setting up for failure. The link Hear the Footsteps posted has a number of shorter, less steep hikes to get his feet wet and gauge how he'll do and whether he enjoys being in the woods. Start from there and, if he enjoys it and can handle it, work your way up.
          I agree with you partially but disagree partially as well. The child has problems. There may be other problems associated with the ones being discussed by his parent. You and the rest, and me, myself and I, should not be recommending any "climbing to the peaks" sort of hikes. Gentle walks in the Adirondacks woods are still very nice hikes. I do them all the time. Let's abort steep and semi-steep climbs.

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          • #6
            I don't know about Giant, but the last mile off the main trail to the peak of Phelps is pretty difficult. My 9yo is very light and has the lungs of a distance runner, but Phelps left us both pretty worn out.

            How about something like Sleeping Beauty instead?

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            • #7
              If you want to give him a start , try the Wild Center in Tupper Lake , or one of the Visitor interpetive Center ,at Paul Smiths, ,both have easy trails and a lot for the kids to see and explore ,. Would consider that before taking him out on a full scale hike

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              • #8
                When my children were young (daughter 8 and son was 5) and I wanted to introduce them to hiking, which my wife and I have greatly enjoyed, we started off "at the top" of some mountains. That is we picked some with drives or toll-roads and were able to hike around on top before trying others. We live in Manhattan and in the summer of 2000, we drove up first to the Green Mts in Vermont and drove up Mansfield and greatly enjoyed the hike along the ridge to the top—and tried one of the side trails called “Subway” (we just had to, since we regularly ride NYC subways). After a few days in Vermont, we drove over to near Lake Placid and drove up Whiteface, took a ride up in the elevator constructed by the CCC and then hiked down back to our car. A lot of smaller hikes and lake swimming in between on that trip and in ensuing years we took on bigger challenges and high peaks in the Adirondacks, Catskills, Green Mountains and the White Mountains.
                It worked, they are now 25 and 22 and avid hikers and campers—in fact my daughter has been dating a young man (another Manhattite) for the past 6 years whose family is one of the original “99 year lease-holders” of one of the old camps around Ausable Lake—not to be confused with the Ausable Club. She’s hiked up Haystack from the backyard of their camp and I’m a bit jealous! Anyway, with your 9 year old, start off easy, either from Whiteface or a number of the other recommendations that folks have posted and hope for the best.

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                • #9
                  If either of one of those two High Peaks is a must, I would choose Phelps before Giant for an overweight child with asthma. Giant is no joke! Phelps has a pretty nice view. BUT if a non-High Peak hike is a possibility, think about Noonmark, which has fantastic views of the Great Range or Hopkins across the road from the Ausable Club and just up the road from the Roaring Brook Falls trailhead for Giant. The surest way to create a non-hiking child is to make them hate it and to force them to try to do something beyond their abilities.

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