Monday, November 16, 2020

Investing in the story of the Adirondacks

As 2020 starts to wind down (sad, right?), I find myself reflecting on how the Adirondack Explorer has evolved this year. We’ve come a long way, and not just in learning how to work effectively as a remote newsroom during a pandemic.

As busy as we’ve been gathering and reacting to the news and compiling recreational insights, it’s easy for me to forget how different we were as a magazine and website a year ago. That’s around the time that Ry Rivard joined us to cover Adirondack waters. His addition gave us a sharp focus on the emerging (and sometimes improving) environmental threats to the lakes, streams and groundwater that we consider among our park’s greatest assets, especially in a changing climate that is harming or drying supplies elsewhere. Ry’s January magazine piece about harmful changes in our biggest water — Lake Champlain — signaled the kind of big-picture thinking we’re developing. But he has also drilled down on topics of immediate concern to individuals who get their water from wells.

In January, Gwendolyn Craig joined us as policy reporter, covering environmental and resource management issues in Albany, Ray Brook and wherever decisions and programs affect the Adirondacks or people’s experience of the park. She has tracked the effects of New York’s pandemic-stricken state budget, the debates over adding more forest rangers and restricting or otherwise managing High Peaks hiker traffic, and the critical battle against invasive species. Just today she broke news about where the Army is considering conducting troop training in and around the Adirondacks.

Later in the year, we added Melissa Hart as a web editor to help increase our digital reach, both at and Our growth in online readership has been extraordinary this year, and we hope it leads to more subscribers both in print and through our digital app. Throughout the year, multimedia journalist Mike Lynch has provided visuals and recreational insights like readers are accustomed to expecting from us.

How have we grown like this? In a word: You. In a time when media organizations are struggling we are lucky to have strong reader support, and the funding that comes with it.

In the coming year, we intend to be even more ambitious. Besides deepening our coverage of the Adirondacks, we want to seek solutions to problems such as road saltharmful algal blooms and wilderness management in a time when wilderness is attracting more and more visitors. To do it, we’ll visit places that could be models, whether for managing winter roads, keeping lakes pristine or maintaining high-quality wilderness experiences (and trails) in popular areas. Like the talented and dedicated journalists we’ve assembled to bring you this information, it’s an investment that will take money.

From now until Dec. 31, we have a chance to double our readers’ help with this coverage. If you donate to the Explorer during this time, your gift will be matched by a $100,000 challenge from our board members, donors and NewsMatch, a national campaign for nonprofit news outlets like ours. Whether you give once or in recurring monthly donations, your commitment to quality news reporting in and for the Adirondacks will go twice as far.

If you like what we’ve achieved this year, we hope you’ll continue to support our efforts to do even more. Thanks for your support!

Double your gift to Adirondack journalism

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Brandon Loomis

Brandon Loomis is editor of Adirondack Explorer.

2 Responses

  1. Chap says:

    Start investigation the death of the
    Adirondacks because of over crowding.

  2. Worth Gretter says:

    I sympathize on the overcrowding issue, and I certainly don’t want more competition for my favorite camping places.
    But then I remind myself that the Adirondacks belong to all New Yorkers. So we need to figure out ways to share them that will maintain the quality of the nature experience and also protect the environment.

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