Saturday, April 20, 2024

Readers share eclipse stories & photos; loons call for mates, woodcocks take flight

Eighth Lake during the eclipse

They always say, “April showers bring May flowers,” but they didn’t say if they were snow or rain showers, which we had both of this week. Some snow covered the ground for a brief time on Saturday morning, April 13, but was gone by noon that day. I’m still hearing from readers about what they experienced during the eclipse. Some of my family members, living out Rochester way, didn’t experience much as clouds covered up the whole eclipse. I feel sorry for them that they didn’t see it.

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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Historian Michael Barrett to present on Peter Gansevoort April 27 in Lake George

General Gansevoort's burial site at Albany Rural Cemetery

Lake George, NY – Local Revolutionary War hero General Peter Gansevoort, who commanded Fort George at Lake George during the crucial year of 1776 and led a successful defense of Fort Stanwix in central New York the following year to help pave the way for the Continental Army’s ultimate defeat of General Burgoyne at Saratoga, will be the subject of the presentation “Peter Gansevoort: A Hero and His Legacy,” on Saturday, April 27 at the Holiday Inn Resort in Lake George, beginning at 11 a.m.

The featured speaker will be historian Michael P. Barrett, Vice President of the Board of Trustees for Albany Rural Cemetery, where General Gansevoort is buried. The program is sponsored by the Lake George Battlefield Park Alliance and is free to the public. Attendees are asked to register prior the event at with the number of seats needed.

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Saturday, April 20, 2024

New Yorkers Asked To Keep ‘Lights Out’ to Protect Migrating Birds

Gray catbird

On April 11, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Office of General Services (OGS) reminded New Yorkers to take action to protect migrating birds as they navigate night skies by participating in the ‘Lights Out’ initiative. Joining national and international efforts, State buildings participating in Lights Out will keep non-essential outdoor lighting from affecting the ability of birds to migrate successfully throughout New York.

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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Behind the scenes of law making: Join us May 15 in Albany

making laws graphic

Our next event focuses on the complex world of environmental legislation.

Why hasn’t the state legislature passed a conservation design bill that would require developers to protect wildlife and fragile ecosystems when planning big projects? Will there be a constitutional amendment to save a historic lodge in the Adirondacks? Or another to repurpose a former prison?

Just how does environmental legislation prevail – or not – in Albany? We’ll ask the people closest to the work.

Join the Adirondack Explorer, with the Times Union of Albany, for a panel discussion featuring:

Blair Horner, executive director of New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG)

Sen. Peter Harkham, chair of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee

Sen. Dan Stec, ranking member of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee. He represents all of Clinton, Essex, Franklin, and Warren counties, and parts of St. Lawrence County and Washington County.

Assemblymember Deborah Glick, chair of the Assembly Environmental Conservation Committee

Assemblymember Matt Simpson, ranking member of the Environmental Conservation committee and representative who represents Essex, Warren and parts of Saratoga counties.

This event is happening Wednesday, May 15 from 9 am. to 10:15 a.m. at the Times Union office, 645 Albany Shaker Road, Albany, NY 12211

Free to attend, please sign up so we know you are coming!


Friday, April 19, 2024

Delving into the Red Bark Phenomenon

Red bark on a white pine tree.

Every morning, I walk along state highway 67 in Ephratah, NY.  Recently, I noticed that a few of the fir trees by the side of the road appeared to have red bark.  I did not know if this was a type of tree that I should be able to ID or if something else was going on.  I Googled “red bark” and found articles about “Red Bark Phenomenon” such as this one.

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Friday, April 19, 2024

Parking reservations required May 1 to Oct. 31 for Route 73 corridor trails

Gates to the Adirondack Mountain Reserve.

On April 16, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Adirondack Mountain Reserve (AMR) announced the parking reservation system to promote safe access to trails in the Route 73 corridor will resume May 1, following a successful season in 2023. Since the launch of the parking reservation system in 2021, more than 52,500 users have registered at AMR’s website to make parking reservations.

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Friday, April 19, 2024

Outdoor Conditions (4/19): Recreationists can help limit spread of invasive species

outdoor conditions logoThe following are only the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry webpages for a full list of notices, including seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.


  • Snow Report (4/17): The following report describes conditions as of Wednesday, 4/17. Changing weather may affect conditions. There is less than 10cm (4in) of snow at the Lake Colden Stake. Conditions are wildly variable ranging from mud, ice, and multiple feet of rotten snow in the area around the lake. Avi Pass can be accessed without snowshoes. Snow levels vary at higher elevations and snowshoes are required where snow depths exceed 8 inches. Like last week, there will be a possibly dangerous increase in stream levels with the rainfall/snow melt combo.

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Friday, April 19, 2024

Maple in April Festival comes to Hadley on April 27

23rd annual Maple in April Festival flyer.

Hadley, NY – All are invited to join for a day of sweet adventure at the 23rd annual Maple in April Festival set for Saturday, April 27. Nestled along Rockwell Street in Hadley, this free, family-friendly extravaganza will take place rain or shine. From sap to syrup, experience live maple demonstrations, savor the taste of everything maple, and don’t miss out on Hadley Business Association’s famous Scholarship French Toast breakfast.

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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Dinosaur Pike

Aerial shot of a lake

Adirondack lore is replete with legends, stories & tales of wilderness encounters. A shadowed array of wild creatures, monsters, and beasts time has long since forgotten. Some lurk High Peaks forests. Some prowl the night.  Still others lurk the hidden depths of mountain lake waters.

Some legendary creatures are oft regaled as campfire stories. Some are etched for posterity on cedar log lean-to walls. Others are whispered tales held close to the vest by greybeard backwoods old-timers. Some tales carry with them out of focus photography of debate topic provenance. A select few gain widespread notoriety via news media coverage.

Most Adirondack folks who’ve lived life in the mountains have a monster creature encounter tale or two of their own.

For one of mine, click the link & read on.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

To the bank

wastewater treatment plant operator

Money update, auditor’s take

Lawmakers in Albany appear close to finalizing the state’s $237 billion budget. Gov. Kathy Hochul announced an agreement last night (April 15) — even as some lawmakers said they were surprised by the news. Policy reporter Gwen Craig in her newsletter noted the agreement included reinstating annual water infrastructure spending to $500 million, after Hochul had proposed slashing the annual investment in drinking water and wastewater funding to $250 million.

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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Volunteer firefighters receive wildland fire training at Paul Smith’s College VIC

forest ranger reports graphicTown of Brighton
Franklin County
Training: On April 13 and 14, Forest Ranger Lieutenant Dicintio and Rangers O’Connor and Praczkajlo taught wildland fire courses to 17 volunteer firefighters at the Paul Smith’s College Visitor Interpretive Center. The volunteer firefighters often work side-by-side with Forest Rangers during wildland fires.

Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC’s Hike Smart NYAdirondack Backcountry Information, and Catskill Backcountry Information webpages for more information.

If a person needs a Forest Ranger, whether it’s for a search and rescue, to report a wildfire, or to report illegal activity on state lands and easements, they should call 833-NYS-RANGERS. If a person needs urgent assistance, they can call 911. To contact a Forest Ranger for information about a specific location, the DEC website has phone numbers for every Ranger listed by region.

Wildland fire course

Wildland fire course. NYS DEC photo.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

What’s Happening With The 2013 NYCO Amendment?

In November 2013, New York State voters narrowly approved an amendment to the Forever Wild clause of the New York State Constitution granting a private company, NYCO Minerals, Inc. (NYCO), permission to conduct mineral exploration in a 200-acre portion of the Jay Mountain Wilderness Area in the Adirondack Forest Preserve.

The NYCO amendment was opposed by Protect the Adirondacks and many others because it granted, for the first time, a private company the ability to exploit public Forest Preserve lands for profit and because the amendment completely undermined the classification of the affected lands as Wilderness, which is the most protective Forest Preserve classification established in the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan. PROTECT also opposed the amendment because it had no sunset provision, meaning that the mineral exploration authorization was granted to NYCO in perpetuity.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Author Glenn Pearsall to lead April 18 discussion at Union College

Union College Academy for Lifelong Learning (UCALL) and the Kelly Adirondack Center are pleased to present a presentation featuring author Glenn Pearsall who will lead a discussion on his book, When Men and Mountains Meet: Stories of Hope and Despair in the Adirondack Wilderness after the American Revolution. The event will take place at the Old Chapel on Thursday, April 18, 2024 at 5:30 p.m., with refreshments available beginning at 5 p.m. This presentation is free and open to the public.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Dedication ceremony held for fallen ECO Stephen Lawrence Raymond in Warren County

ECOs and family attend a dedication ceremony

Remembering ECO Raymond – Warren County
On March 14, family, friends, and colleagues remembered ECO Stephen Lawrence Raymond with the dedication of a shadow box displayed in the lobby of the DEC sub-office in Warrensburg.

ECO Raymond passed away on April 17, 2017, from illnesses related to his assignment at the World Trade Center following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Raymond became an ECO in 1981 and served 26 years prior to retiring in 2007. ECO Raymond, from Thurman, was the first Environmental Conservation Police Officer in New York to be diagnosed with illnesses related to his work at the World Trade Center site.

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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Hamilton County team works year-round to protect watershed resources

Woman shows a student a water critter

The Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District’s small yet mighty team works year-round to protect watershed resources and strengthen resiliency throughout the third largest and least populated county in the state.  Four staff members implement diversified programs and projects that protect natural resources and help landowners.  Their work is detailed in the 2023 annual report that highlights accomplishments and metrics.

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