Almanack Contributor Melissa Hart

Melissa Hart

Melissa is a journalist with experience as a reporter and editor with the Burlington Free Press, Ithaca Journal and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. She worked as a communications specialist for the Adirondack North Country Association and runs her own New York State Women owned Business-Enterprise Bootstrap Communications, which includes digital marketing, strategy and design. She enjoys hiking, camping and other outdoors activities, and spending time with her husband, their twin daughters, and rescue animals -- two dogs and a cat.

Monday, May 10, 2021

A ‘Wild Idea’

wild idea eventHear about the wild ideas that became “A Wild Idea: How the Environmental Movement Tamed the Adirondacks” by Brad Edmondson.

Adirondack Explorer Editor Brandon Loomis will interview Edmondson about his 19-year project interviewing the people who fought for and against the Adirondack Park Agency Act that culminated in the book and a special series for the Adirondack Explorer Regulators and rebels: The forever wild fight.

Presented by Adirondack Explorer and Adirondack Center for Writing 7 p.m. Thursday, May 13.

Sign up here

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

When nature calls…

outhouseWith all the discussion about high peaks use (overuse?), one unsavory item that often comes up is the dirty business of, ahem, doing one’s business in the woods. In hopes of mitigating the overabundance of toilet paper blooms on the trails, I’ve dug up a gem from the Almanack archive: “The Art of the Adirondack Dump” by Dan Crane.

Photo: An Adirondack outhouse, outside of Wilmington. Courtesy of Susan Hennessey/Almanack file photo


Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Grace Peak

grace hudowalskiAs Women’s History Month wraps up, here are a few stories in our archive about Grace Hudowalski, one of the first 46ers (No. 9) and for whom Grace Peak is named:

Almanack file photo


Tuesday, March 30, 2021

It’s debatable: A permit to hike?

ausable clubNow that you’ve had a chance to process the news about the Ausable Club and partners moving to a reservation system for the Adirondack Mountain Reserve trailheads. I’d like to hear your thoughts. Are you celebrating this news (like the folks at Adirondack Wild)? Will this impact your hiking plans this summer? Do you feel this change is needed to protect the resources or an arbitrary move?

Friday, March 26, 2021

When will Mirror Lake’s ice go out? Your best guess welcome

mirror lakeIce out time is approaching! Pick the correct ice-out date on Mirror Lake in Lake Placid and you’ll be entered to win some Explorer swag. To enter, go to this post on the Explorer’s website and place your best guess in the comments before April 3. We’ll be picking three winners after the big melt. Ice out on Mirror Lake is documented by the Ausable River Association, and we’ll be using its data for the official ice-out date. You can review the Mirror Lake ice record, which goes back to 1903, on the organization’s website. Mirror Lake sediment core sampling, photo by Brendan Wiltse

Monday, March 22, 2021

Virtual program on preventing aquatic invasives

boat stewardJoin the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program on Wednesday, March 24 at 10 a.m. for a special, one-hour presentation on preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species in Adirondack waters.

From competitive plants to hungry invertebrates, invasive species harming aquatic habitats are almost always introduced to new areas by people—on our waders, on our boats, or in our bait buckets. Protect the waters you love to fish and prepare for the upcoming Adirondack fishing season by understanding best practices to prevent the spread of invasive plants and animals.

RSVP for this free virtual event now.

Photo courtesy of Adirondack Watershed Institute

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Your insights wanted: Recreation content

Mike Lynch

Looking to hear your thoughts to help shape future recreation content. The Adirondack Explorer would love to hear from you about recreation: What you enjoy doing outside, where you go for information. All outdoors experience levels welcome to participate!

In addition, we’d love your feedback about our current outdoors content. Can you let us know how we’re doing?

Click here to take a brief survey:

Photo of Mike Lynch by Gwendolyn Craig/Adirondack Explorer

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Erin go bragh: Irish heritage stories

donegal beard contestFor St. Patrick’s Day, here’s a round up of some Irish-themed content pulled from the Almanack archive:

Irish Fenians in the North Country: From the article: “The Fenian Brotherhood was an Irish Republican organization founded in New York in 1858 by John O’Mahoney. Their name is derived from legends about ancient Irish warriors called the Fianna. Their goal was an Irish Republic free of British rule.” READ MORE

Irish Beef Stew: A recipe for a traditional favorite. READ MORE

Irish Road Bowling in Indian Lake: From 2016, “One fun tradition that has been practiced in Ireland for hundreds of years in the counties of Cork and Armagh, is the sport of Irish Road Bowling. Indian Lake has been making this part of its St. Patrick’s Day tradition since 2006.” READ MORE

» Continue Reading.

Monday, March 15, 2021

Discussion topic: High Peaks use

Now that the High Peaks Advisory Group’s final report is out, have you had a chance to read through it?

Me either, ha ha. But here’s the Cliff Notes rundown from the DEC about the highlights:

Many of the report’s specific recommendations support DEC efforts that are currently underway with State and local partners to improve public safety and sustainably manage use of some of the High Peaks’ busiest trailheads, including:

» Continue Reading.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Discussion time: the APA at 50

We’re gearing up at the Adirondack Explorer to run a series looking back over the formation of the Adirondack Park Agency 50 years ago, as well as looking into the future of the agency.

Here are a few recent posts that are critical of the APA:

Things fall apart at the APA

Local government club at the APA

Now it’s time to weigh in and share your thoughts: What role should the APA play in the next 50 years? What’s working, what’s not?

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Adirondacks the musical

Edward M. Shepard and the Making of a People’s ParkJust for fun discussion idea….I recently watched a filmed performance of the musical “Hamilton.” Which got me thinking: What would “Adirondacks, the musical” look like? Who would the main actors be? What would they sing about?

Some song title ideas (using existing songs for inspiration):
“Climb every mountain”

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”

“Misty Mountain Hop”

Maybe we can take these ideas and start an Adirondack-themed playlist…

Photo: Shepard Park amphitheater by Fred Thatcher/Almanack archive

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Share your winter trail cam pics

eagle trail cam picsA while back, an Almanack reader shared some photos of bald eagles eating carrion, caught on a trail cam. (One of those is pictured here.) Got me thinking that it would be cool to see more of these kinds of photos, as we start to emerge out of winter. Send in your winter trail cam pics to [email protected].

Saturday, February 20, 2021

How has border closure impacted you?

Recently, we’ve talked a bit about the year without Canadians in the Adirondacks (and on the flip side, our inability to travel north across the border). Here’s an article that ran recently in the Explorer (and will appear in the March/April issue of the magazine).

Now I’d like to hear from you: How has the border closure impacted you?

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Feeling the Adirondack love

love in a pandemicIn recognition of Valentine’s Day, here are some stories that speak to love in the Adirondacks, from the Almanack archive:

(Pictured here: Mary Welday and Duke Huntington, finding love and companionship in Saranac Lake. during the time of tuberculosis. Courtesy of Priscilla Goss/Historic Saranac Lake)

» Continue Reading.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Share your community stories

Adirondack Communities logoThis week on the Adirondack Explorer website, we ran a story about the community of Indian Lake rallying to save their local branch of Community Bank from closing. (Read it here)

Now I’d like to hear from you: Who are the people in your community that make things happen? What are some other examples of Adirondack towns and villages coming together to creatively solve problems and come up with innovative solutions?

Leave a comment below or send me an email to: [email protected].

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