The largest land protection initiative in the Adirondack Park in the last decade was announced on a virtual conference call last week.
The state is acquiring two conservation easements, including one on the famous Follensby Pond, from The Nature Conservancy for $9.3 million. About 14,600 acres will be protected overall. People have been waiting for some sort of news about this parcel since 2008 when TNC first purchased it.
The state is expecting to close on the easements in the spring, so we don’t have those documents for details. However, we learned that the state plans to mostly keep closed the 970-acre pond where Ralph Waldo Emerson and other philosophers camped. It will be open to researchers to study cold water fish and other climate-related questions. On Friday I spoke with Katie Petronis, deputy director of natural resources at the state Department of Environmental Conservation, and she said there will be some sort of public access but DEC and TNC are still working out what that will look like. It could be an annual guided tour or some sort of programming with another organization.