The contradictory, disconnected, segmented, illegal and impractical ways that the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (with full cooperation from the Adirondack Park Agency so far and support from Governor Andrew Cuomo) is going about the business of planning and building community connector snowmobile routes in the Adirondack Park continues apace. Work planning for the just approved community connector between Newcomb and Minerva, for example, will prove very interesting indeed and will be challenged in every sense of that word. » Continue Reading.
Posts Tagged ‘Tahawus’
Last week, company President Ed Ellis made a presentation to the Warren County Board of Supervisors Public Works Committee about the company’s new plans. Ellis sees an exciting business opportunity for his rail lines with low traffic in the long-term storage of hundreds of oil-soaked tanker cars. » Continue Reading.
“Human footprints,” Brian remarked.
“So I guess we’re not Lewis and Clark,” I replied. » Continue Reading.
It seems that every big city now has a “ghost tour,” but here in the Adirondacks we have our very own ghost town. And what could be more appropriate than a Halloween tour of a ghost town?
Iron ore was discovered on the banks of the upper Hudson in 1826 and two businessmen, Archibald McIntyre and David Henderson, soon developed a mining operation that they conducted with varying success for the next three decades. To house the workers, a nearby village was built and named McIntyre, then renamed Adirondac around 1840.
McIntyre’s Adirondack Iron & Steel Company came to an end in 1858, and so did the village. Reasons for their demise include the difficulty in transporting iron from such a remote mountain location, impurities in the ore that made it difficult to process, a downturn in the global economy, a devastating flood that washed out the dams, and McIntyre’s death. The settlement of Adirondac again changed names, now being called simply “the deserted village.” » Continue Reading.
The Forest Ranger Search and Rescue Report below is issued intermittently by DEC and is not a comprehensive list of all emergencies in the back-country, these are only a few of those recently reported by DEC.
The events reported below are reminders that wilderness conditions can change suddenly and accidents happen. Hikers and campers should check up-to-date forecasts before entering the backcountry and always carry a flashlight, first aid kit, map and compass, extra food, plenty of water and clothing. Be prepared to spend an unplanned night in the woods and always inform others of your itinerary.
The Adirondack Almanack reports the most current outdoor conditions on Thursday evenings. On Friday mornings, John Warren’s reports the latest outdoor conditions on WSLP (93.3) and on the stations of North Country Public Radio. To subscribe to the weekly conditions podcast.
» Continue Reading.
Usually a trip to the Upper Works in Newcomb for my family doesn’t include an extended history lesson, but I always have a few interesting facts to tell our visitors while driving this seemingly endless stretch of County Route 25 to the southern entrance of the High Peaks. We are usually there to hike, though the area’s history is just as vast and interesting as its trails.
I share that the McNaughton Cottage is where Vice President Theodore Roosevelt and his family were staying in 1901 when he took his “midnight ride” after receiving word that President McKinley had taken a turn for the worst from an assassination attempt six days before. The Roosevelt family was climbing Mount Marcy when the official word of McKinley’s fate was received via telegram.
I could even give some vague references to the McIntyre Iron Works Blast Furnace and the dilapidated condition of an old mining town called Adirondac.
But now when we go to the Upper Works, we schedule a bit more time to explore this area with the addition of interpretive signs detailing the historical significance of these buildings, the mining operation and the blast furnace that would produce iron for only two years. » Continue Reading.
Today I conclude my series on Adirondac the the McIntyre Mines. The deserted village of and the remains of the operation at Upper Works make for an evocative Adirondack destination. Though this abandoned settlement’s historically significant mining heritage is known among locals, history buffs, and High Peaks backpackers who use the Upper Works trailhead, it is by no means widely known, or even somewhat known. There are great benefits to be had if this fact changes.
When the Open Space Institute purchased the Tahawus Tract from NL Industries they put a terrific plan in place to designate the area containing Adirondac and the 1854 blast furnace as a historic district. Work began some years ago to stabilize and preserve the furnace, the one original village building, McMartin House (or MacNaughton Cottage) and the cemetery. However the work has taken years and I hear through the grapevine that funding is an obstacle. As a result the implementation of the historic district has been slow. » Continue Reading.
Today I return to my series on the McIntyre Mines, the Settlement of Adirondac and the romantic sense of the past the area embodies. Being a ghost town, and an area of historical significance dating back nearly two centuries, the remains of the works, village, and private club possess an unmistakable aura of mystery.
This sense of the unknown, of the forgotten lives and fortunes of those who partook of Archibald McIntyre’s enterprise, extends beyond the experiences of wondering visitors who are discovering it for the first time or the hundredth. Indeed, despite the fact that the history of Adirondac has been well-chronicled and that primary documents abound (mostly in the form of letters and business records) there are many things that remain legitimate mysteries to this day. For example there were several furnaces that were built or improved during the nearly thirty years the proprietors tried to make a go of it. We still do not know where all of them were located. We do not know where the original log boarding house sat, nor do we know where the great guide John Cheney lived during his many-year association with the mines. » Continue Reading.
Teddy Roosevelt is not available to recreate his historic 1901 ride from the North Creek Train Depot, but nationally recognized Roosevelt reprisor Joe Wiegand will be on hand to fill those famous shoes.
On September 14-15 the Saratoga/North Creek Railway (SNCRR) is providing historic train rides, recreations and special excursions surrounding the theme of Teddy Roosevelt’s famed ride from Tahawus to North Creek. » Continue Reading.
The most obvious attraction to the settlement of Adirondac in its current state is that is is a ghost town, crumbling and abandoned. It is no wonder that people find ghost towns appealing, being as they are romantic places tinged with loneliness and even sadness. Most of all they are landscapes of mystery, places where the imagination can run with little limit, wondering at the lives and stories echoed within.
Like any ghost town and perhaps even more than most owing to its wild, forbidding setting, Adirondac invites mystery. To the knowledgeable visitor some of that mystery requires little imagination, merely some history. Where was the earliest furnace? Where and what was the nature of the house in which legendary guide John Cheney resided? How many families lived in the settlement at its peak? These and many other questions have no answer.
When I first became obsessed with Adirondac in the 1980’s I entered into a mystery adventure of my own. I assumed that there must be a cemetery associated with the settlement and I resolved to find it. It was more than fifteen years before my wife Amy succeeded. » Continue Reading.