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A Great Place to Get Away from It All: The Snow Goose B&B in Keene Valley

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Snow Goose B&B
1433 NYS Route 73
Keene Valley, NY  12943

Snow GooseSituated on 13 wooded acres, about a mile and half south of the main village strip of Keene Valley, stands a commanding cream-colored house known as the Snow Goose Bed & Breakfast. You’ll be immediately captivated by the house’s large Victorian porch, its inviting open floor plan, its spacious and charming rooms, and its wood floors and fireplaces. Couple that with the quiet, serene setting of Keene Valley, and the friendliness and hospitality of its owners, Amy and Wayne Stoner, and you know that staying here is an experience you won’t soon forget.

Named by the previous owners after Angela Barrett’s beloved children’s book, the Snow Goose is an excellent choice if you’re interested in exploring a quiet and cultural Adirondack town, or if you’re an avid hiker or outdoors person. Keene, if you didn’t know, is called “Home of the High Peaks,” as 25 of the 46 New York high peaks are actually located here. The Snow Goose B&B attracts a good amount of hikers, as well as foreigners, looking for a different kind of Adirondack experience, one away from the hustle and bustle of many of the surrounding towns.

Wayne and Amy StonerOwners Amy and Wayne opened the B&B two years ago, after moving from Harrisburg, PA, and have had a constant stream of traffic since. It’s no wonder, when you consider that the two are born entertainers, having always had a busy house, filled with family and friends. And that’s how you’ll feel staying at their B&B—right at home, or rather like you’re in your home away from home, because let’s face it, when you’re on vacation, you still want to feel like you’re getting away. Combine that with their avid knowledge of the area (one that rivals any good town historian’s), and some mighty fine cooking, and you’ll most likely find yourself not wanting to leave.

The house, as well, has an interesting bit of history. Built in the 1850s as a private residence, it was originally situated on the eastern side of the Ausable River, and was completely dismantled in the early 1900s (yes, down to every floorboard and pane) and moved by oxcart across the river to an elevated foundation, where it was completely reassembled to its original layout (yes, down to every floorboard and pane) and still stands today. Apparently, this was common practice at the time, but to see the house in person is to understand the magnitude of this event, as oxcarts aren’t especially large and the Snow Goose is.

The Snow GooseThe Snow Goose calls itself, “A Woodland Sanctuary for Body and Spirit.” And that’s pretty much what you’ll find here. Running a resort has been a longtime dream of Wayne’s and when the couple made the decision two years ago to open the B&B, they also wanted it to be a place where other people could come & realize their dreams. That’s an area they’re continuing to explore, but it’s this mentality as well that keeps their customers coming back. And for only two years in operation and already showing a slew of returning customers, that pretty much says it all.

Comfort is the main focus here, and you’ll see that as soon as you walk in. Furnishing the living room is a brown leather couch and chair, along with a mantled fireplace that has a pair of wooden snowshoes hanging from its sides. The coffee and side tables contain plenty of reading material on the area should you come unprepared, or if you’re looking to learn more about the region. They also have a book with menus from local restaurants.

Adjacent to the living room is a small library, with board games, a TV and movies that you can watch either in the family room, or if you’ve brought a laptop, in your own. Another favorite is the Victorian porch, which spans the front of the house, and is decorated with a hammock and Adirondack chairs that are perfect for a cool summer day or late rainy night, when you want to sit outside.

Snow Goose, Main EntranceThe Snow Goose features three rooms, two on the top floor and one on the main; the bottom floor room has the added luxury of a kitchenette and a private entrance to the porch. All rooms have a charming, rustic, early 20th century feel. Each is air-conditioned, so you don’t have to swelter in the humid summer months; each are also equipped with an electric fireplace to keep you nice and toasty during the winter. The rooms have no TVs, an added plus when you want to get away from it all. Our room also had many of its original features, including a tub from the 1900s, and a large, spacious bathroom, with more than ample room for two people.

As for breakfast, Wayne and Amy are committed to purchasing from local farms and markets; much of the food is locally grown and organic. A deluxe continental breakfast is served weekdays from 8am-9:30am in the dining room. During our stay, we sampled assorted fresh fruit (blueberries, kiwi and strawberries) with fresh cream; muffins, cereal and yogurt are also available. The standout was a delicious potato and egg quiche, topped with sour cream and hot salsa. On weekends they serve a full menu of fruit and yogurt parfaits, apple pecan pancakes, maple glazed sausage, tomato basil quiche and homemade cinnamon raisin bread. Keep in mind that their menu always changes.

Wayne and Amy live on the other side of the house, which is blocked off to give their guests privacy.

The Snow Goose, and the whole of the Keene Valley area, is a haven for anyone looking for a true Adirondack retreat. The East Branch of the AuSable River is located southwest of Keene Valley, in the upper Au Sable Lake, which leads to streams and waterfalls that run through the town. Prices for the Snow Goose are moderate, with rooms ranging from $95-$120/night, depending on the day.

The Snow Goose is located on Rt. 73 in Essex County, just north of St. Huberts. For more information, contact Amy and Wayne at 518-576-9460, or visit

–This article is co-written by Dave Bower and Monica Sirignano, Publishers of The Free George.

The Free George is the online magazine and visitors’ guide of Upstate NY, covering things from Albany to Lake Placid, including Saratoga, the Lake George region and the Adirondacks. Check out our City Blogs section for our extended coverage areas as well.

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