It's obvious the higher up you go, the more beautiful fall landscape you'll be able to see. Short of employing an aircraft of some kind, your best bet would be the Department of Environmental Conservation's fire towers.

At one time there were more than 100 fire towers throughout the state, including 52 in the Adirondacks and another 19 in the Catskills. The last closed in 1990 as modern technology made it easier and more economical to keep an eye on mother nature.

Fortunately organized groups have prevented the abandoned structures from deteriorating and restored some that had gone downhill. This makes for spectacular views all year round. In fact they're called "cheap views" because of the easier access and shorter hikes.  Here's a list of towers around Central and Upstate New York.

The DEC website has a complete list of all fire towers in New York. The Forest Fire Lookout Association is the group that works to restore towers throughout the U.S.


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