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Bones Brigade

Travelers with a burning need for speed (despite the winter cold) can rocket down the mountainside Olympic track at the Lake Placid Skeleton Experience in Lake Placid, New York. Skeleton is a sledding sport where riders speed headfirst along an ice chute aboard a 47-inch sled—without the benefit of brakes or steering.


Competitive racers can clock speeds in excess of 80 miles per hour on the mile-long track, completing the run in less than 52 seconds. Novices can give the sport a try on a less intense quarter-mile portion, reaching a more reasonable speed of 35 miles per hour.

But the reading on a radar gun doesn’t do the experience justice, says Jon Lundin, public relations coordinator at the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority. “You feel like you’re going 300 miles per hour. You don’t even really need to lean; the sled will take you. In fact, it’s best to steer as little as possible.”

For more information on the Lake Placid Skeleton Experience, visit

Margaret Harrist

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