It is one part woodsmoke aged cedar and one part moth balls, mixed with a squirt of Ol' Woodsman, a wet, wool blanket and the lingering smell of old canvas. It is a smell that can only be duplicated in camp, and it is a scent that serves to transport back to calmer, easier days when the time drifted by slowly and everything was still exciting.
Camp life hasn't changed much over the years. Certainly there are a number of conveniences that have raised comfort levels as the gear is lighter and the chow is better, but time spent in camp is still the time spent in camp. It's more than something in the air.
In the early 1880's, a writer by the name of Wachusett from Long Lake, wrote in a letter to Woods and Waters magazine, "With the Sportsmen who have come into the wilderness there mingles this year a larger proportion than ever before of invalids attracted here by reports of the marvelous healing properties in the air of especial benefits in the cases of lung diseases. "
"The majority of these people derive invaluable benefit from their visit because most of them come in the initial stages of their malady at first capable of the cure."
He continued, "The singular sweetness of the air is apparent to all and is even more manifest in rowing on the water than in walking or camping in the woods. There is nothing enervating and at the same time nothing dangerously bracing about it."
Santanoni Wagon Rides
If you'd like a taste of camp life, with a touch of the grand old heydays of the Adirondacks, it may be time pay a visit to the little village of Newcomb.
Newcomb is home to Great Camp Santanoni, Huntington Forest, the APA Visitors Interpretive Center, the headwaters of the Hudson River and lots of wild land.