Lake Tear of the Clouds

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Lake Tear of the Clouds
Lake Tear Pano bw.jpg
Lake Tear of the Clouds with Mt. Marcy in the background
Location Essex County, New York
Coordinates 44°06′24″N 73°56′09″W / 44.10667°N 73.93583°W / 44.10667; -73.93583Coordinates: 44°06′24″N 73°56′09″W / 44.10667°N 73.93583°W / 44.10667; -73.93583
Type tarn
Primary inflows unnamed streams
Primary outflows Feldspar Brook
Basin countries United States
Surface elevation 4,293 ft (1,309 m)

Lake Tear of the Clouds (44°06′25″N 73°56′09″W / 44.1069°N 73.9359°W / 44.1069; -73.9359) is a small tarn located in the town of Keene, in Essex County, New York, United States, on the southwest slope of Mount Marcy, the state's highest point, in the Adirondack Mountains. It is the highest pond in the state. It is often cited as the highest source of the Hudson River,[1] via Feldspar Brook and the Opalescent River, even though the main stem of the Opalescent River has as its source a higher point two miles north of Lake of the Clouds, and that stem is a mile longer than Feldspar Brook.[citation needed]

The Hudson River as named actually begins several miles southwest at Henderson Lake in Newcomb, New York.[2][3][4]

The lake was discovered in 1872, by Verplanck Colvin while he was surveying the Adirondack Mountains. He wrote:

On September 14, 1901, then-US Vice President Theodore Roosevelt was at Lake Tear of the Clouds after returning from a hike to the Mount Marcy summit when he received a message informing him that President William McKinley, who had been shot two weeks earlier but was expected to survive, had taken a turn for the worse. Roosevelt hiked down the mountain back to the Upper Tahawus Club, Tahawus, New York, where he had been staying. He then took a 40 miles (64 km) midnight stage coach ride through the Adirondacks to the Adirondack Railway station at North Creek, New York, where he discovered that McKinley had died. Roosevelt took the train to Buffalo, New York, where he was officially sworn in as President.[5] The 40-mile route is now designated the Roosevelt-Marcy Trail.[6]


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