The state’s new requirement that boaters get certified that they have cleaned their boat before launching in Adirondack waters is in full effect this summer, so how it’s going?
We will be working on an update in the coming weeks and want to hear from anyone who has seen the scene at boat launches this summer: Are people complying with rules or resisting the message of stewards working to limit the spread of invasive species?
While boat stewards from the Adirondack Watershed Institute and other programs around the park are reaching as many boaters as possible, we are hearing some concerns that law enforcement doesn’t have the resources to strictly enforce the law when stewards are not present at launch sites.
AWI last week posted a picture of one of the stewards stationed at the Lake Champlain boat launch in Westport. The steward posed in front of a large mound of invasive curly-leaf pondweed intercepted from boats as they left the lake. They have also documented Eurasian watermilfoil and water chestnut on boats looking to launch on Great Sacandaga Lake and other places in the park. The updates are a sign of effective management and a reminder that the invasive plants are always looking for a way in.
Thinking about ice
A team of researchers across the world in June released the latest data of long-term ice cover trends in the Northern Hemisphere, including some from the Adirondacks. The ice records “represent some of the longest climate observations directly collected by people,” according to the study. The data has shown that in recent decades, “lakes have experienced unprecedented ice loss.”
The study includes data from Mirror Lake (apologies for incorrectly referring to Lake Mirror in last week’s newsletter), as well as other New York lakes.
The mass collection of lake ice data is one of the strongest indicators of warming trends. If the trends continue, it could doom deeply-held Adirondack traditions that center around frozen ponds and lakes.
Our latest magazine issue should be arriving in mailboxes anytime. I wrote about a local effort to recognize Adirondack rivers as containing inherent rights worth protecting in court – an emerging movement among environmental activists seeking new ways to protect important ecosystems and species.
Outdoors columnist Klarisse Torriente has a story about her recent visit to OK Slip Falls. I made my first trip to the gorgeous waterfall this weekend, continuing down to a quiet beach on the Hudson River. Next time, I’m going to make sure I bring a picnic and swimsuit with me.
- A new Wild Center exhibit hopes to combat climate doom with a focus on solutions.
- The Adirondack landscape is still scarred from a 12,000-year-old flood.
- Lines of disagreement are emerging as disability rights activists, local leaders and environmental groups offer thoughts on roads in wild forests.
Boat stewards photo courtesy of Adirondack Watershed Institute
Editor’s note: This first appeared in Zach’s weekly “Water Line” newsletter. Click here to sign up.