The premise is that the new state lands will attract more tourists. In the May/June issue of the Adirondack Explorer newsmagazine, Brian Mann takes a hard look at this notion.
Mann talked to regional politicians, local business owners, environmentalists, and economic researchers, among others. The consensus is that the Finch, Pruyn acquisition does present an opportunity, but economic growth won’t happen on its own. Like any tourist destination, the Finch, Pruyn lands must be marketed and well maintained.
If the lands are not properly marketed, it’s possible that they will simply “cannibalize” other parts of the Adirondack Park. In other words, all we’d be doing is shuffling the same tourist dollars around.
We’ll post Brian’s full story soon on Adirondack Almanack.
The latest issue of the Explorer also contains an in-depth look at phase three of the Finch, Pruyn acquisition: the state’s purchase of eleven parcels scattered around the Park and three located just outside it. The article also reports the state expects to complete phase four by the end of this year: the purchase of the two McIntyre Tracts, encompassing 12,000 acres, on the edge of the High Peaks Wilderness.
The acquisition of the McIntyre Tracts will be good news for hikers, of course, but it’s also good news for paddlers. The eastern tract contains long stretches of the Hudson River and Opalescent River, a tributary of Hudson flowing out of the High Peaks. When researching my guidebook Adirondack Paddling, I paddled both rivers and included the trip in the book. However, there weren’t many options then for legal access and egress. With this acquisition, paddlers will be able to enter and exit the Hudson at numerous places, and when they go up the Opalescent they will be able to stop on the sandy banks for a swim or picnic.
Speaking of the High Peaks … the Explorer’s cover story is about a road-bike trip around the High Peaks Wilderness. Ethan Rouen and his wife, Kim Martineau (who took the cover photo), started at Chapel Pond and did a three-day circuit. They stayed in Newcomb the first night and Tupper Lake the second, stopping along the way for miscellaneous adventures.
Among the other goodies in the Explorer:
- My tale of riding the rollicking whitewater of the Hudson Gorge in an inflatable kayak (known as a ducky). We also plan to post this story on the Almanack with video.
- Guidebook writer Lisa Densmore’s colorful account of a hike up Goodnow Mountain. The view from the restored fire tower is extraordinary.
- David Sommerstein’s report on the increase in the number of oil-tanker trains rumbling through the Champlain Valley and the hazards posed by them.
- An article that asks why—forty years after the creation of the Adirondack Park Agency—so few towns have adopted APA-approved land-use plans.
- A profile of Erik Schlimmer, who hiked from the Park’s north border to its south border and wrote a guidebook so others can follow in his footsteps. He calls it the Trans Adirondack Route.
- A report on the explosive growth of rock climbing near Lake George. At Shelving Rock Cliff alone, climbers have put up more than 70 routes in recent years.
- A debate between Jack Drury and Tony Goodwin on the feasibility of establishing a trail system along a state-owned rail corridor.
In addition to the “Birdwatch” and “On the Wild Side,” this issue debuts a third natural-history column that will run regularly in the Explorer. Titled “The Naturalist’s Lens,” it will feature photos and text by Larry Master, a zoologist who lives in Lake Placid. As the title suggest, this column will emphasize photography. Larry’s first subject is the migration of amphibians to vernal pools.
There is a lot more to the latest issue of the Explorer. Some of the stories will be posted on the Almanack, but most are available only in print. If you’re curious, go to the Explorer website to subscribe or request a free issue.
Cover photo by Kim Martineau: Ethan Rouen rides his bike through Keene.