The sweat is worth the views! Take the 4.6mi RT hike up Buck Mountain [GPS intersection Sly Pond Road and Shelving Rock Road in Fort Ann, Keep heading down Shelving Rock Road and you will reach the Buck Mountain trailhead], just over an hour out of Albany. Trails are easy to follow, there are a couple of little stream crossings.
As Adirondack mountains go this one is not too brutal, you follow a relatively flat trail for some time until your ascent, which don’t stop until you get to the summit. It’s pretty rocky and not much to see except a few glorious wildflowers.
When you do reach the summit the breeze is as incredible as the vista. More likely than not, there will be a big crowd. Find your own nook and drink some water, have a snack, and look into that lake splattered with little islands and mountains in the distance.