Overview of Speculator Region
Speculator / Lake Pleasant area you can use one word to sum up. “Charming”
This little southern Adirondack town is unique in its ability to balance modern amenities with nature and beauty. Speculator is the only incorporated village in Hamilton County. It lies completely in the town lines of Lake Pleasant, Hamilton County’s Seat, and on the shores of the lake, Lake Pleasant. Speculator and Lake Pleasant have history at almost every stop along route 30 and route 8. In the 1920s Speculator was a famous boxing town with Heavyweight Boxing Champion, Gene Tunney training at the Osbourne Inn. Gene trained in Speculator for 3 of his championship bouts from 1926-1928, including 2 against Jack Dempsey. Gene training in Speculator also brought other famous boxers to train in the area too. These include Hall of Famers Max Schmeling and Max Baer among others.
Loius Seymour “French Louie” was also from the area. French Louie was a well known Adirondack hermit and guide, He was also known for his partying ways when he would come into town to sell his furs. It is often said he would come in sell his furs and be broke by time he left town again. “French Louie’s” grave stone is located behind “Charlie Johns” Grocery store in the village and is visited by hundreds of people a year. Some of these people leave gifts for Louie. From traps and French coins to French flags and whisky bottles. You can read more about this Adirondack woodsman in Adirondack French Louie: Early Life in the North Woods written by Harvey L Dunham.
Besides the history. Speculator / Lake Pleasant also has many amenities such as fine dining with over half a dozen restaurants you are never short on selection. And it has a wonderful town square style park, with the public beach across the road, a picnic pavilion, a soft ball field, basketball courts, and a small playground for children. Next to the pavilion is a public use brick barbeque pit. Behind the soft ball field is a well maintained handicap accessible nature path. With a built up boardwalk over the marshy sections and signs posted along the trail explaining the foliage. This walk will lead you down to the edges of the Sacandaga river where it leaves Lake Pleasant, and gives a stunning view (especially in the fall).
If nature is what you are looking for, this is the place for you. You can choose from fishing for the many fish in this area (Pickerel, Perch, Trout…) to Bird watching (Osprey, Loons, Geese…) to watching for the deer, bear and moose that frequently travel through the area. Where the Sacandaga river leaves Lake Pleasant, it is slow and meandering, it creates a great area to canoe and kayak. 1 ˝ miles down river the Kunjamuck river empties into the Sacandaga. You can paddle 4 to 4 ˝ miles up the Kumjamuck which would give you a good day on the water.
With all this don’t forget how popular this little village and town can be in the winter. With access from Speculator to thousand of miles of snowmobile trails, heading north, south, east, and west. A ski mountain right in town, Oak mountain is updated with lights that offer a fantastic view when lit up at night. The lake is a great ice fishing spot as well, with an almost guarantee, to catch fish every day.
There is so much more to do in the area I can’t put it all here. Take the time to explore a true Adirondack gem, like everyone else you won’t be disappointed.
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