New 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.
The common loon is referred to by the state Department of Environmental Conservation as the “spirit of the northern waters.” Here in the Adirondacks, you can find images of loons seemingly everywhere, from T-shirts to coffee mugs to throw pillows.
The birds are revered as the spirit of the wilderness. But there was a time when they were hunted. » Continue Reading.
Whitewater kayaking will be the highlight of Labor Day weekend activities in Colton.
The last two water releases of the summer by Brookfield Renewable Energy for expert-level whitewater kayakers to paddle the Stone Valley section of the Raquette River are scheduled for Saturday, September 2 and Monday, September 4.
The largest turnout is expected Saturday when paddlers will be doing timed runs in the afternoon on the Class 5 section of the river which begins just below the dam in the hamlet of Colton. » Continue Reading.
Traditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY) has invited the public to attend the upcoming folk instrument documentation event on Thursday, August 31st from 2 to 6 pm at The Whallonsburg Grange Hall.
This event will focus on the making and keeping of folk instruments, such as fiddles, guitars, and other instruments that are part of regional, community, or family musical traditions.
This documentation day is one in a series of programs that are a part of TAUNY’s next research project and exhibit, “Instrumental Stories: North Country Folk Instrument Making and Collecting.” » Continue Reading.
Barkeater Trails Alliance (BETA) is seeking volunteers for their Mountain Bike Festival weekend, from September 1-3.
Festival volunteers will serve as a host for the event and a resource for activities in the region.
Volunteers are asked dedicate at least 4 hours to be “on-call” during the specific time slot agreed to fill in order to receive the full benefits. A volunteer schedule can be found here. » Continue Reading.
With New York State officials contemplating new ways to induce economic development in the Adirondack Park, the idea of connecting communities more directly to the surrounding Forest Preserve makes plenty of sense.
As Governor Cuomo said at the 2017 Adirondack Challenge this summer:
“You want to develop the asset (the Adirondack Park) because we need jobs, we need the economy, we need tourism. It has to be done in a way that doesn’t disrupt or deteriorate the asset. Because the Adirondack Park is not just an economic asset, it’s not just a state park, it really is a gift from God. I believe that. There is a spirituality to the Adirondack[s] … that is undeniable. And the last thing we would want to do is diminish that asset. Our goal is to leave it even better than before for our children.” » Continue Reading.
William J. O’Hern’s new book Adirondack Camp Stories: A Treasury of True Tales, Lore, History, Recreation, and Colorful Characters of the Mountains (North Country Books, 2017)is a storybook with archival photos that connect readers with early Adirondack camps — from the simplest backwoods shelters, to boarding houses and hotels that offered more comfortable amenities. » Continue Reading.
Have you heard of Forest Bathing? It’s the literal translation of a program developed in Japan for experiencing nature as a means of de-stressing one’s life. I first learned about it in a 2012 Outside Magazine article titled “Take Two Hours of Pine Forest and Call Me in the Morning.”
The relaxing benefits of nature have been known for thousands of years, the Greek physician Galen used to take his patients outside where they could experience nature as part of their healing process. He felt that it helped stimulate their desire to get better, and famed Crimean War nurse Florence Nightingale who went on to found the Leeds Infirmary once wrote about the healing benefits of patients seeing flowers. » Continue Reading.
A brown, irregularly shaped hunk of fossilized dinosaur dung is circulating around the stone-floored rock shop.
The middle-school students, surrounded by shelves full of amethyst, pyrite, quartz crystals, and cracked open geodes, let their hands roam over the hunk and then pass it along. They don’t know that the mystery rock they’re scrutinizing is a chunk of prehistoric waste. Greg Beckler, owner of Natural Stone Bridge and Caves, will tell them eventually.
This game of pass the poop continues in a semi-circle as Beckler encourages the kids to really explore the fossil. Dip their fingers into its cracks and seams. Give the poop a deep, full inhale. » Continue Reading.
I painted the eclipse of August 21, 2017. No, not a solid black background with an orange disk with a bite taken out of it. I went out to a favorite painting location and I painted the effects of the eclipse on the Adirondack landscape!
It was kind of a crazy idea, but I figured a 60% reduction of the amount of light coming from the sun should have some kind of an optical impact on the world around us. I considered several options and then went to the Harrietstown Cemetery hill, on Route 86, where there is an unobstructed view looking east towards Whiteface, Moose and McKenzie Mountains. They are always bathed in light during the afternoon, so I figured the reduction of light would effect the colors and values. » Continue Reading.
My wife Beth works for Champlain Area Trails out of Westport but, long before she started there, we were major fans of the network of hiking opportunities radiating through hill and dell interwoven throughout the eastern side of Essex County. The trails are gorgeous, running through field, forest and stream, and have some of the best views anywhere of Lake Champlain and are a perfect, nearby antidote for those wishing to take “pressure off the peaks.”
They don’t present the physical challenge that the High Peaks do, but look, it’s not every day that you want to climb up the south side of Saddleback.
Being generally free of erosion, roots and rocks, the trails are a break for the knees. Being mostly short, and at lower altitudes, there is no need for a pack full of survival gear. And being more open and interspersed with civilization than the wilderness to the west, there’s little chance of getting lost.
Great news: The Ausable River Porta-John program will continue. They reached their crowd-sourcing goal of $4,000 earlier this month to pay for handicap accessible Porta-Johns required by the state. More than 100 people supported the campaign.
Now they’ve added another $1,000 stretch goal to pay for an initial round of E. coli and total coliform testing of 10 back-country sites this summer and fall, according to Brendan Wiltse, science & stewardship director for the Ausable River Association. » Continue Reading.
On Sunday, September 3rd, Adirondack Wildlife Refuge will host their 10th annual Habitat Awareness Day, from 10 am to 4 pm.
The theme this year will be Wildlife Habitat Challenges. Keynote speaker will be 2013’s New York State Professor of the Year, Curt Stager of Paul Smith’s College, author of Deep Future and many other books and studies. Attendees can hear Stager, along with other local nature authorities, observers, rehabbers and the college interns working at Adirondack Wildlife, discuss what they’re seeing and learning on the ground in the Adirondack region. » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Almanack's contributors include veteran local writers, historians, naturalists, and outdoor enthusiasts from around the Adirondack region. The Almanack is the online news journal of Adirondack Explorer. Both are nonprofits supported by contributors, readers, and advertisers, and devoted to exploring, protecting, and unifying the Adirondack Park.
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