The Saranac Lake area is receiving some national attention as a top destination for outdoor sports enthusiasts.
Outdoor Life magazine has released its 2010 list of the 200 best towns in America for hunters and anglers. Saranac Lake has been included on the list each of the past three years.
According to a statement on the magazine’s website, the rankings are based on – quote – “the performance of hundreds of towns in various socioeconomic and outdoors-related categories.”
The study is steeped in statistics – the magazine states that socioeconomic subcategories like population growth, median household income, median home value, cost of living, unemployment rate, population density, mean commute time and amenities account for 40 percent of a town’s overall score.
The remaining 60 percent of a town’s score is based on outdoors-related subcategories, including: gun-friendliness of each town’s state; huntable and fishable species nearby; proximity of public land and waters; and the potential for taking a trophy-caliber animal or fish nearby.
Sylvie Nelson is executive director of the Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. She says anytime Saranac Lake gets mentioned in a national publication, it’s good for the area.
“It’s very positive, although there’s no real way to calculate exactly what the economic impact of being on a list like this is,” Nelson said. “But the thing is, it shows Saranac Lake in a very positive light, it also targets the people that Saranac Lake is a good fit for. We’ll probably see an influx of people specifically related to this list.”
Nelson notes that the Adirondack Park is unique in that each community attracts a specific type of tourist.
“I think for us, because we are one of the larger communities, it is a good place for people to use as a sort of headquarters – people set-up shop and then set out for wherever else they want to go,” she said. “We’ve got easy access, in and out. And we’ve got all of the amenities here, too. So I suspect those are some of the reasons we made it on the list.”
Outdoor Life has compiled a list of top outdoor towns for three years running. The top three this year includes: Rapid City, South Dakota; Pocatello, Idaho; and Page, Arizona.