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Saranac colony ; it is a serious business, which holds the most magical spell of seriously undertaken. The outfit is as beauty. In all that wilderness there is complete as the exigencies of the coun- nothing common or unclean. The untry and the climate demand, and the sightly débris of dead trees has now a best hours of each day are given up to plastic purity of form and color, and this flying pursuit of health along the every boulder shows some sculpturwoodland roads or on the surface of the esque effect. Through the woods the frozen lakes. One leaves no cares be- road almost ceases to be definable; in hind to steal after and ride with him; advance or behind, the trees close up in one forebodes no unwelcome engage- apparently unbroken ranks, and one ments when the horses are turned home- wonders whence he came or how he is ward. To clear one's mind of care is a to find his way out. The long aisles Saranac injunction as often and as vig- through which one passes noiselessly orously repeated by the lips of author- seem to lead into the very heart of a ity as Dr. Johnson's famous advice about sanctuary--so silent, so solitary, so procant. One starts with a free and open foundly impressive to sense and thought mind ; “black care is shaken off with are the snow-covered woods.

The great the civilization which has done so much trees, in their vigorous life, are not to increase its weight and deepen its more beautiful than the dead, which have hue.

fallen against them and caught the snow It is a clear, brilliant morning, with a in outspread branches. The trunks that temperature a little below the zero-point. lie prone among their more fortunate The snow lies fresh and stainless over fellows have lost all trace of scars and the fields and woods as one turns into the decay; and the under-brush fills in the road to Lake Placid, leaves the little picture with a free and careless grace village behind him, and is soon speeding of outline and grouping which hints at through a solitary world. The heavy, nature's prodigality of beauty when she sandy road of bitter memory on hot turns artist. Above all shines the delisummer days is now barely definable cate blue of the wintry sky. across the level reaches of snow. Two Meanwhile the mountains have come narrow tracks afford the only evidence into clear view, and lure one on to their that other adventurers have penetrated fastnesses. To the east rises the noble these remote and silent woods. The mass of Whiteface, to the south the sense of isolation is fed by every peak of Marcy overtops all its aspiring turu of the road and by every vista companions. The White Mountains through the forest; one feels alone with show no more impressive grouping of nature. Cities and the arts of men hills. The sleigh suddenly leaves the seem not only remote, but unreal. The road, descends a steep hill

, and glides road winds along the base of a low hill, out onto the smooth surface of Mirror whose crown of spruce and pine is Lake. The ice-cutters are at work, and dark and green amid the universal mon the blue tint of the great pieces piled otone of white; it climbs the upland, about them suggest that last season's bare but beautiful now that its unsight- reflections of sky have been frost-bound ly logs and stumps have been trans- and frozen in with the waters which reformed by the magic of frost; it runs ceived them. The lake is an open plain, through an occasional clearing, where through which one may take his own the drifts lie so deep that a catastrophe course; the snow is so light and dry is only avoided by extreme care and that the horses pass through it without skill. On either side there is a succes- difficulty, and a light wind obliterates sion of winter landscapes, a series of all trace of travel. The circuit of the winter incidents, which make one obliv- lake is soon made, and in the meantime ious of time and distance. It is a silent, the sky is dimmed by a gathering haze deserted world, and yet how much goes which portends snow. A short drive on within it! The snow, lodged in every through the woods, by a rough and uncrevice, caught by every branch, inter- certain road, brings one to Lake Placid, rupted by every leaf, has wrought upon never so beautiful as now when it lies the landscape with that unconscious art snow-bound among the mountains. To

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day it is a virgin solitude, and following one returns the sun is sinking and the swiftly the lines of its wooded shores, mountains are passing through that one feels that here the genius of winter magical transformation of light by is incarnated. The sky has become which their massive outlines are softened gray, the lake is a stainless plain, the and spiritualized. Instead of flat surclustering hills show their green masses faces of dead white, each tree is inditouched with snow, while Whiteface vidualized and stands out in marvellous rises from the shore, as noble a pile, distinctness, with every branch and leaf seen from the surface of the lake, as outlined in exquisite frost-work. While stars ever rested upon in their long the light of the western sky falls on journeying. It is the hour of enthrone- those rich masses of frost-tracery a visment, and a few fortunate persons are ion of evanescent loveliness passes bepresent at the very moment when winter fore one, the flush of the rose slowly takes its seat and puts on its crown. A fading into the light of the first star. great wreath of snow gathers about the But there are pleasures afoot in the summit of the mountain and slowly de- wintry woods, and one of the most exscends, expanding as it sinks; the sky hilarating is associated with the snowbecomes more and more indistinct; snow shoe. This ingenious device of the flakes begin to fall, slowly at first, but higher latitudes adjusts man to a winwith increasing rapidity, until the land- ter environment which would otherwise scape is folded out of sight and the narrowly circumscribe his activity. whole world is given up to the silent When the snow lies deep along the mystery of the storm.

woodland roads or in the depths of the The Lower Saranac offers a driving- forest, the pedestrian is practically imtrack of a unique kind on a clear, cold prisoned ; walking through snow-drifts day, when its surface is an unbroken is a form of exercise from which even stretch of snow, and one passes swiftly the most vigorous shrink. But the from island to island over the frozen snow-shoe, by diffusing one's weight over waters, through which his fragile boat a larger surface, makes the heaviest may have carried him under the en snow tributary to a new kind of pleaschantment of summer skies. I was so There is no art which is learned fortunate as to make the circuit of this with so much personal humiliation as charming lake during a driving storm, the art of putting the snow-shoe to its when all traces of travel were instantly normal use ; the novice invariably disobliterated, all landmarks concealed, and

a marvellous inventiveness in nothing remained but the whirling snow. turning it to other and more calamitous The silent fury of the storm, the remote

Once mastered, the snow-shoe ness and solitude of the scene recalled puts the whole country into one's posthose studies of winter life and scenery session ; road and field, hill and wood with which the genius of Schreyer has offer no obstacles which cannot be overmade the world familiar. Another novel come. There is, indeed, no other way experience awaited me when for the first in which one may really see all there is time I left the road and followed the to be seen, and do all there is to be winding course of the Saranac River. done. The charm of the winter woods The lumber sledges had made a smooth, can only be felt when one seeks the very narrow track on the ice, but not suffi- heart of their solitude, and the key of ciently marked to make it distinguish these remote recesses is the snow-shoe. able at a distance from the level white- The stimulating air, the consciousness ness of the surface. The river is narrow of freedom to scale all heights and to and full of curves, trees line the shores in storm the very citadel in which winter many places, and to the east there is a has intrenched itself give the man on noble background of mountains. One snow-shoes a feeling of superiority over charming bit of scenery gives place to an. his fellows which only the noblest natother in a long succession of winter pict can bear with equanimity. One ures, touched with a refinement of form comes back from such an exploration of and a delicacy of color denied the riper the woods enriched beyond his deserts ; and more affluent beauty of summer. As he recalls the exquisitely etched branches






of the tree that stands solitary on some them down he would be accused of rosnowy upland; he recalls the silence of mancing. Add to these out-of-door octhe mountain gorge, the music of whose cupations the excitement of the toboggan summer brook still lingers softly ca- slide, when nature acts as architect and denced in the ear of memory; he recalls constructor; coasting, skating, and walka whole world of impressions so per- ing, and it is evident that time need sonal, so intimately related to his own hang heavy on no man's hands in the imagination, that if he ventured to set Adirondacks during the winter.

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