Wednesday, April 19, 2017

1757: What Adirondack History Might Have Been

“These are mere deserts on both sides of the river St. Lawrence, uninhabited by beast or bird on account of the severe colds which reign there.”—Samuel de Champlain.

“One cannot see a more savage country, and no part of the earth is more uninhabitable.” —Pierre Charlevoix, 1756. And about winters in the north: “It is then a melancholy thing not to be able to go out of doors, unless you are muffled up with furs like the bears…. What can anyone think, where the very bears dare not show their face to the weather for six months in the year!”

The last quotation (1767) is from John Mitchell, who cited the above comments by Charlevoix and Champlain in assessing New England, New York, and Quebec during discussions about the future of the American colonies. His writings at that time supported a solution Mitchell had proposed a decade earlier, one that would have drastically altered today’s map of the Americas and seriously revised the history of the Adirondack region. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Theodore Roosevelt in Maine: 19th Century Work and Masculinity

The Oneida Community Mansion House will host a discussion with historian Jason Newton about popular 19th century attitudes about work and masculinity entitled Teddy Roosevelt Among the Lumberjacks, on Sunday, May 7, at 1 pm.

Newton will examine Theodore Roosevelt’s early adult experiences in the Maine woods and at Harvard in a discussion of urban elites’ views of masculinity. Ideas about “ruggedness” shaped everything from immigration policy to imperialism, while rejecting what was considered feminine. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Climate, Science Marches Planned Locally

NYS CapitolThere will be several Climate Marches held locally from April 22 to 29 to show support for the People’s Climate and Science Marches in Washington, DC. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Comments On Buck Pond Campground Management Sought

buck pond campgroundThe New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released the Draft Buck Pond Campground Unit Management Plan (UMP) for review and comment regarding the management of Buck Pond Public Campground. The campground is located on County Route 60, also known as Gabriels-Onchiota Road, almost a half mile east of the hamlet of Onchiota in the Town of Franklin, Franklin County.

NYS DEC will accept public comments on the draft plan until May 15, 2017, and will host a public availability session on April 27, 2017, from 10 am to 2 pm at the DEC Region 5 Ray Brook Office, 1115 NYS Route 86, Ray Brook. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Spring Turkey Season Starts May 1, Youth Hunt Apr 22-23

thomas houghton turkeySpring turkey season opens on May 1 in upstate New York north of the Bronx-Westchester County line. DEC’s annual youth turkey hunting weekend is scheduled for April 22 and 23.

The youth turkey hunt for junior hunters ages 12-15 is open in all of upstate New York and Suffolk County. DEC encourages experienced hunters to take a novice hunter afield this spring, whether the novice is a young person or an adult getting into the sport for the first time.

DEC reports that the turkey population experienced reproductive success in the summer of 2015, and combined with relatively mild winters in 2015-16 and 2016-17, it is anticipated that the spring harvest will be up from last year and above the five-year average (about 20,000 birds). The estimated turkey harvest for spring 2016 was 18,400 birds, and nearly 6,000 junior hunters harvested an estimated 1,300 birds during the two-day youth hunt in 2016. » Continue Reading.


Monday, April 17, 2017

Steven Engelhart: What Makes Historic Preservation Irresistible

The Church of the Transfiguration Our Vermont friends behind “Preservation in Pink” define historic preservation as “an eternally optimistic, inspiring field intent on improving present and future quality of life through the appreciation of our built and cultural heritage.” Although we are still a long way from being a nation or a region of true historic preservationists, we are increasingly becoming more preservation-minded as the intersections between preservation and common sense, community health, good stewardship, and sustainability becomes better understood.

So what makes historic preservation so attractive, even irresistible? » Continue Reading.


Monday, April 17, 2017

Grant Funding For Mohawk River Watershed Projects

Mohawk River Watershed and Adirondack Park The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that approximately $200,000 in grant funding is available to municipalities and not-for-profit organizations to implement the Mohawk River Basin Action Agenda. The funding is provided by the state’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) and administered under DEC’s Mohawk River Watershed Grants Program.

To be eligible for this funding opportunity, proposed projects must be located within the Mohawk River watershed (which includes portions of the Adirondack Park in the towns of Russia, Norway, Salisbury, Stratford, Caroga, Bleecker, Arietta, Morehouse and Ohio), as well as further the objectives of the Mohawk River Basin Action Agenda.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, April 17, 2017

Changes Underway For Caroga, Piseco Lake Campgrounds

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released for public review and comment draft Unit Management Plans (UMPs) for two DEC campgrounds in the Adirondacks.

The UMPs for Caroga Lake and Piseco Lake campgrounds identify proposed upgrades and replacements for facilities and infrastructure during the next five years. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, April 16, 2017

Big Plans For Adirondack Gateway In North Hudson

frontier townSince its closure in 1998, Frontier Town could be more accurately described as a ghost town, but parts of the moldering theme park would be granted new life in a $32 million plan by the state to establish a Gateway to the Adirondacks at Exit 29 on the Northway.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the plan in his State of the State Message in January and filled in some of the details later in the month. It will include an information center, day-use area, equestrian trails, and a campground along the Schroon River. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, April 15, 2017

Adirondack Wildlife: The Belted Kingfisher

belted kingfisherTrout Season has opened, but humans, are not the only creatures that prowl the banks of remote streams, or visit the shores of backcountry ponds, in an attempt to snag a small brook trout. Throughout the Adirondacks, there are numerous forms of life that are well adapted for catching fish, and among the most colorful and noisy is the belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon).

With its large head, long, thick bill, jagged crest, and white band around its neck, the kingfisher provides a silhouette that is easily recognized. However, it is not the unique appearance of this stout bird that initially draws attention to its presence. Most anglers and individuals that simply spend time outdoors commonly become aware that a kingfisher is in the immediate area by noting its distinct rattling call. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, April 15, 2017

Fact, Fiction On Chester’s Underground Railroad

Underground Railroad in the town of chester by donna lagoyThe publication of a new book about the Underground Railroad in the Adirondacks, focusing on its supporters and their good work in the Town of Chester in Warren County, rides a high wave of public interest in this dramatic chapter of our history. No bookstore lacks a full-frontal display of Colson Whitehead’s explosive novel The Underground Railroad, with Oprah’s golden imprimatur on the front jacket.

Regional scholarship is booming: in just the last decade, books and articles have documented Underground Railroad activity in Indiana, Buffalo, Detroit, Vermont, New York City, Pennsylvania, and the long flanks of Lake Champlain. Tom Calarco’s The Underground Railroad in the Adirondack Region (2004) is still the most inclusive, best synthesized, and detailed account of goings-on inside and all around the Blue Line. And cultural tourism in the region has gained immeasurably from the opening of the North Star Underground Railroad Museum at Ausable Chasm — the work, in great part, of two independent researchers, Don and Vivian Papson of Plattsburgh. » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 14, 2017

The Adirondacks Around The Web This Week


Friday, April 14, 2017

Adirondack Easter Services on Gore and Whiteface

This Easter, my family is choosing to leave the traditional religious service behind and mark the day on the top of Little Whiteface. Though not everyone commemorates Easter, we hope a sunrise service will be a tradition my child embraces – as well as on that briefly takes her focus off candy hunts.

Every year Gore and Whiteface Ski Resorts offer a nondenominational service that brings everyone closer to nature. Each Easter the two Adirondack ski resorts offer free gondola rides so that everyone can be part of this unique experience. » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 14, 2017

The Big Adirondack News Stories This Week


Thursday, April 13, 2017

Sights and Sounds of Adirondack Woodcock

woodcockEvery year around this time, my husband, kids and I haul out the tent blind from our garage and set it up in the field in front of our house. We toss in a few folding chairs, a thermos, maybe a neighbor. At dusk, we take our seats.

First come the vocalizations – what are officially called “peents,” but sound more to us like the name Bert repeated in a froggy voice. A male American woodcock materializes – we never see the moment of arrival – and makes his way across the winter-flattened grass. His goal is to impress females hiding in the tree line, although I suspect he makes an impression on predators, too. He looks vulnerable, and more than a little ridiculous, with his plump shorebird body, letter-opener beak, and eyes positioned far back on his head. » Continue Reading.


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