Thursday, February 16, 2017

Judge Seeks More Info In Rail-Trail Lawsuit

A state judge says he needs more information before deciding whether the state should be blocked from removing thirty-four miles of railroad track between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid.

In a February 7 order, acting State Supreme Court Justice Robert G. Main Jr. requested more information on the ownership of the rail corridor and on the state’s plans to comply with historic-preservation law.

Until the judge issues a ruling, the state is barred from removing the tracks. The state hopes to begin the work this year.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Friends Rally For Keene Climber Injured In Fall

Matt HornerMatt Horner, a talented ice climber featured in the current issue of the Adirondack Explorer, took a bad fall while climbing above Chapel Pond last week, suffering serious injuries.

Horner, who lives in Keene, was climbing a route called Rhiannon when he fell about fifty feet and hit the cliff, breaking most of the bones in his face and suffering a concussion and a brain hemorrhage, among other injuries.

The news spread quickly among climbers on Facebook. When Horner posted photos of his swollen and bruised face from a hospital in Vermont, he received comments from more than three hundred well-wishers.

“I am blown away by all the love and help! Thank thank thank you!” he wrote in another post a few days later. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Climber, Hikers, Skiers Rescued by Adirondack Forest Rangers

DEC Forest RangerNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents in the Adirondacks. Working with other state agencies, local emergency response organizations and volunteer search and rescue groups, Forest Rangers locate and extract lost, injured or distressed people from the Adirondack backcountry.

What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.


Monday, February 13, 2017

At Avalanche Lake The ‘Hitch-Up Matildas’ Have A Long History

Two spans of catwalks, known as “Hitch-Up Matildas,” are anchored along the cliff walls of Avalanche Mountain to allow hikers to safely traverse the edge of Avalanche Lake.  They offer dry footing, a breathtaking view of the Trap Dyke, and of the expanse of water sandwiched between Mount Colden and Avalanche Mountain.

The “Hitch-Up Matildas” got their name from a story about Bill Nye  – for whom Mount Nye is named – guiding a hike for Matilda Fielding, her husband, and their niece, back in 1868. The story was first published by Seneca Ray Stoddard in The Adirondacks Illustrated (1874), which I encourage folks to read here. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, February 12, 2017

Winter Storm Impacting The Adirondacks

snow storm in the adirondacksThe National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for the entire Adirondacks and Northern New York through 7 pm Monday. Heavy snow is expected – from 8 to 18 inches in the Adirondacks, at a rate of up to an inch per hour.

Snow will begin late Sunday morning and be heaviest late Sunday afternoon through midnight. The heavy snowfall rate and blowing snow will create hazardous travel conditions.

This storm will create outstanding outdoor conditions for the first time this season across the entire region for snowmobiling, skiing, and snowshoeing. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

15th Annual Adirondack Backcountry Ski Festival March 3-5

The Mountaineer in Keene Valley will host the Fifteenth Annual Adirondack Backcountry Ski Festival March 3rd, 4th and 5th, 2017. Backcountry skiing – skiing on natural snow in natural terrain – combines all of the elements of touring, climbing and downhill skiing into one.

Patagonia Ambassador Zahan Billimoria will give a presentation at the Keene Arts Center on Saturday morning. Zahan is an Exum Mountain Guide and has made a ski descent of all the major Teton Peaks among several other accomplishments in the ski world. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Cycle Adirondacks Itinerary, Changes for 2017

cycle adirondacksThe Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) has announced a new model for Cycle Adirondacks 2017.

Now in its third year, the August 19th to 25th fully supported road bicycling tour will feature three primary hub communities – Schroon Lake, Keene Valley and Saranac Lake – with two consecutive nights at each. Organizers say the result will be more ride distances and options to pedal as few as three days or as many as six during the week long event.

On days the tour doesn’t move between hub communities, guests will have the ability to choose short or long ride distances. They may also choose to take a day off their bike in favor of other activities, such as hiking, canoeing, browsing shops or restaurants. The Wild Center will be a featured activity on Aug. 24 when the tour stops in nearby Saranac Lake for the third straight year. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, February 5, 2017

North Hudson Gateway: DEC Revising Hammond Pond Wild Forest Plan

UPDATE: The public meeting regarding the Hammond Pond Wild Forest Unit Management Plan scheduled for Tuesday, February 7, 2017, at the North Hudson Town Hall, has been cancelled due to forecasted poor weather and road conditions. The meeting has been rescheduled for 6 pm on Thursday, February 16.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is revising the Unit Management Plan (UMP) for more than 45,500 acres of Forest Preserve lands in the Hammond Pond Wild Forest, including parcels adjacent to the proposed Adirondack Gateway at the former Frontier Town site in North Hudson.

The lands include more than 50 parcels located in the towns of Crown Point, Elizabethtown, Keene, Moriah, North Hudson, Schroon, Ticonderoga and Westport in Essex County. The majority of the Wild Forest is located between Lake Champlain in the east, State Route 74 in the south, the Northway in the west, and State Route 9N in the north. There are some parcels located between the Northway and US Route 9 and around the communities of Keene and Keene Valley, and notable parcels along the east side of Schroon Lake.  (Adirondack Atlas Map) » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 1, 2017

ADK’s Western Trails Guidebook Coming Soon

adk mountain clubWestern Trails, the fourth of six volumes in Adirondack Mountain Club’s (ADK) Forest Preserve Series is set to release the beginning of February.

The guidebook includes 7 Wilderness areas, 13 Wild Forest Areas, the extensive St. Regis Canoe Area, 1 Primitive Area, and 2 state forests. Also included is the relatively new Cranberry Lake 50, a 50-mile hiker’s challenge that falls within this region. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Moose River Plains Mountain Biking Plan Comments Sought

Moose River Plains Photo by John WarrenThe Adirondack Park Agency (APA) is accepting public comments on Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (APSLMP) conformance for new development proposed in an amendment to the Moose River Plains Wild Forest Unit Management Plan prepared by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).

Plans being reviewed include expanding universal access for persons with disabilities, adding motor vehicle parking facilities, and increasing mountain biking opportunities in the Moose River Plains. DEC seeks to construct single-track mountain bike facilities, and make bicycling connections to trails at Eighth Lake Campground, Great Camp Sagamore, and nearby communities. » Continue Reading.


Monday, January 30, 2017

Recent Forest Ranger Search and Rescue Operations

DEC Forest RangerNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents in the Adirondacks. Working with other state agencies, local emergency response organizations and volunteer search and rescue groups, Forest Rangers locate and extract lost, injured or distressed people from the Adirondack backcountry.

What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Upgrades at Gore and Whiteface Mountains Planned

Whiteface Mountain with little snow 2016 Mike Lynch PhotoGovernor Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that the state will invest up to $20 million for upgrades at Whiteface and Gore Mountains.

The investment is expected to leverage up to $80 million in private funding to add additional amenities and retail options for guests, according to the Governor’s office. The $20 million for the upgrades at Whiteface and Gore is in addition to $10 million the state is providing to the Olympic Regional Development Authority as part of the 2017-18 FY budget.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Vintage Snowmobile Races Set for Long Lake Sunday

Long Lake is continuing their Winter Carnival celebration with the annual Vintage Snowmobile Races. Known for speed and agility, the Vintage Snowmobile Races take place right on Jennings Pond with plenty of spectator viewing for all.

According to Long Lake Lion’s Club President Robert Keough this event was originally scheduled as part of the Long Lake Winter Carnival, but was postponed because of the amount of ice on Jennings Pond. Now, one week later, there is already 12 inches of ice on the lake, the track is being maintained and the Sunday event is a go. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tony Goodwin: Ski Trips on New State Lands

boreas pondsOver the past five years, the unprecedented addition of sixty-five thousand acres of former Finch, Pruyn lands to the Forest Preserve has opened up many new recreational opportunities. To date, the most publicized opportunities have been for paddling and, more controversially, snowmobiling and mountain biking. Opportunities for cross-country skiing have not been mentioned as often. Now that these acquisitions are complete, it seems to be a good time to take stock of what’s also now available for cross-country skiers.

The three main areas with new opportunities for skiing are the Hudson Gorge, Essex Chain Lakes, and Boreas Ponds tracts. The good news for skiers, especially after last winter’s non-winter, is that all of these areas typically have abundant (or at least some) snow. Furthermore, the Essex Chain and Boreas tracts have relatively smooth roads that don’t need all that much snow to be skiable. While not as exciting to ski as some of the popular routes in the High Peaks and elsewhere, the views at the destinations make up for any lack of outright skiing interest. » Continue Reading.


Monday, January 16, 2017

Dave Olbert: Boreas Ponds Classification Commentary

What is Wilderness, Wild Forest, Primitive, and so on as we apply these terms to our Adirondack Park? They are labels we give to parcels of land within a line drawn on a map. These terms only regulate what we can and can’t do within the corresponding boundaries on the lands that all New Yorkers own. Unless we force all the people who have inholdings to give up their property, remove the road systems, remove the man-made structures, and eliminate some towns, the Adirondacks will never be like the wilderness areas out West.

The concept of what wilderness is as we have applied this term to our Adirondacks is misleading. Is the High Peaks area really wilderness with the extensive overuse it is experiencing? Is sitting at Blue Ledge Pool in the Hudson River Gorge a wilderness experience when 50 whitewater rafts pass through it on any given Saturday? When this question is put to wilderness advocates they simply do not respond; they do not have an answer, or do not want to admit that it is not a “Wilderness Experience.” » Continue Reading.


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