Almanack Contributor NYS DEC


Information attributed to NYSDEC is taken from press releases and news announcements from New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Rangers locate lost hikers on Sleeping Beauty, at Nicks Lake trail

forest ranger reportsRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Fort Ann
Washington County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Oct. 1 at 6:53 p.m., DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a request for assistance from two hikers who became disoriented while hiking Sleeping Beauty Mountain. The 65- and 69-year-old hikers from Long Island were on a trail, but were not sure which trail, as the trail markers were not the same color as the markers on their original trail. Neither hiker had headlamps, maps, food, water, or hiking equipment. At 9:40 p.m., Forest Rangers Donegan and Arnold located the couple on the trail near Bumps Pond, approximately 1.5 miles from the trailhead. The Rangers provided the hikers with jackets, food, and water before escorting them to the trailhead. Forest Rangers and the hikers were back at the trailhead at 12:20 a.m.

» Continue Reading.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Fall cleaning tips for purging old clothes

donation bin for clothesThe calendar turns to another month and we are moving into fall. While this is a great time of the year to get outdoors and enjoy our environment — consider spending a bit of time indoors to clean out your clothing closet and prepare for the seasons ahead. As leaves will be falling off of the trees, before we know it, sweater weather will be here. Get your clothes ready and do so in a green way.

Closet clean out — save green
From clothing swaps, to hand me downs, to mixing and matching and adding fun accessories — clothes you already own can get a new look and extended life. Planning is key to saving green — the environment and money that is. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

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Monday, October 4, 2021

Does Leaf Damage Affect Fall Colors?

fall colorIf you’re wondering if the damage done by this summer’s invasive caterpillar outbreak will affect fall colors, you’re not alone. The answer is—hardly at all! A healthy, leaf-bearing tree that was defoliated by caterpillars should have already grown new leaves again, though these leaves may be smaller than normal. However, leaf colors are determined by environmental conditions rather than leaf conditions. In autumn, the best conditions for vibrant fall foliage are dry, bright days with cool, frost-free nights. Weaker colors are caused by early frost or lots of rain. Rainy weather can leach water-soluble anthocyanins (which are responsible for the range of red colors) from leaves and have an overall dampening effect on fiery colors.

Want to know more about the science of leaf change? Check out last year’s Facebook Live on fall colors, or visit the US Forest Service website. Interested in knowing which parts of NY are seeing fall colors now? Be sure to keep an eye on the I LOVE NY weekly fall foliage reports to track leaf change across the state.

Photo by Vanessa Banti

Friday, October 1, 2021

Outdoor conditions (10/1): South Lake Reservoir closure

outdoor conditions logoThe following are the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for comprehensive and up-to-date information on seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.

Black River Wild Forest: The boat launch, parking area, and adjacent boat launch campsites on South Lake Reservoir will be temporarily closed from 09/27 through 11/30 to allow the New York State Canal Corporation to perform maintenance work on South Lake Dam. Canoers and kayakers may still launch their boats off the shore alongside South Lake Road but should not block the travel lanes, shoulders, or park within the vicinity of the construction area. Alternative paddling opportunities can also be found at nearby North Lake, two miles before reaching South Lake.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Hoist rescues at Indian Head, Algonquin

forest ranger reportsRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Keene
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 While hiking on her day off on Sept. 20, Forest Ranger Temple encountered a hiker from Florida who sustained a lower leg injury near the summit of Indian Head on the Adirondack Mountain Reserve. Ranger Temple contacted DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch at 1:45 p.m. requesting additional Ranger assistance as well as New York State Police (NYSP) Aviation due to the severity of the injury to the 53-year-old woman’s leg. Six Forest Rangers responded to her location, along with NYSP Aviation, and at 3:30 p.m., the injured hiker was hoisted into the helicopter and transported to a local hospital for medical treatment. Resources were out of the woods and clear of the scene at 4:15 p.m.

» Continue Reading.

Monday, September 27, 2021

Long Pond Conservation Easement changed for existing camps


The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and JT Granshue LLC today announced the completion of a modification to the Long Pond conservation easement, which is located in the towns of Colton and Clare, St. Lawrence County. The modification allows for 15 hunting, fishing, and recreation camps originally slated for removal to remain on the property in perpetuity. A conservation easement is a voluntary, legal agreement that protects the natural resources of a parcel of land by permanently restricting future land use and/or development on the property.

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Saturday, September 25, 2021

DEC Announces Start of Small Game Hunting Seasons

duck decoys

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced that most small game hunting seasons open on Friday, Oct. 1, across New York State.

Season dates, bag limits, and other hunting regulations for New York’s small game species are available in the Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide, which can be obtained from a license-issuing agent or on DEC’s website.

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Friday, September 24, 2021

Climate Week Updates

EV charging stationFor 2021 Climate Week, Sept. 20-26, DEC is highlighting two green initiatives in the Adirondack Region.

Solar Installation on Lake George Island
A new solar installation on Lake George Island now powers the caretaker cabin. The solar installation replaces an underwater power line that is used to provide electricity to the cabin. Not only is this green energy solution better for our climate, it is also more resilient.

Electric Car Chargers at DEC Campgrounds
Electric car chargers have been installed at Meadowbrook Campground in Ray Brook and Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian, and Day Use Area in North Hudson. Meadowbrook has one dual charging station with a solar-powered streetlight. Frontier Town has four single-car chargers. These stations are used by both visitors and campground staff. There are plans for more chargers to be installed at additional facilities in the region.

Friday, September 24, 2021

Outdoor conditions (9/24): Gulf Brook Rd closed for repairs

outdoor conditions logoThe following are the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for comprehensive and up-to-date information on seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.

  • The trail from Lake Arnold to Feldspar Brook is experiencing extensive flooding. Crossing flooded areas on floating logs and old pieces of bridging is dangerous and should be avoided when possible. Seek alternate routes. If you must cross, be prepared to wade through deep water.
  • The ladder on the Basin Mountain trail has a damaged top rung. DEC staff are working to repair the ladder, but hikers should use caution in the interim.
  • Per the conservation easement agreement with Elk Lake Lodge, the Gate at Clear Pond will be closed to Public Motor Vehicles as of Oct. 12 and will not open until after mud season in May of 2022. Hikers will need to park at the Upper Elk Lake Road Parking Lot on the west side of the Elk Lake Road approximately 2.3 miles south of the Elk Lake Parking Lot and Trailhead. From the evening of Oct. 22 until the morning of Dec. 6, no hikers may enter the Elk Lake Conservation Easement.

» Continue Reading.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Rangers carry out injured hiker on Hopkins Mountain

forest ranger reportsRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Keene
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Sept. 14, at 11:14 a.m., Essex County 911 contacted DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch reporting a hiker with a knee injury on the summit of Hopkins Mountain in the Giant Mountain Wilderness. Rangers Lewis, Morehouse, Martin, and O’Connor responded. Rangers Lewis and Morehouse stabilized the hiker’s knee and carried him down the trail where he was transferred to a 6×6 UTV. The hiker was taken to the trailhead where he was met by his spouse and then driven to a hospital. Resources were clear at 4 p.m.

» Continue Reading.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

A More Sustainable September

Master Gardeners working at Eastside Center in Glens FallsSeptember days traditionally mark a goodbye to summer as warm nights wane and are replaced with the cool mornings and falling leaves of autumn’s approach. As we wave a “see you next year” to summer, many opportunities await us in the month ahead for a more sustainable September.

  • Swap or borrow: Need something for school or a tool for a fall project? Before buying new, check with family, friends, neighbors, or community groups to see if they have what you’re looking for. Swapping or borrowing saves money and can help keep items that have already been purchased in use longer.
  • Go secondhand in September: Whether you’re searching for furniture, sports equipment, or on the lookout for a new outfit, great finds in good condition are out there through shopping secondhand at thrift stores, garage sales, or even through online community marketplaces. Shopping secondhand can be more affordable and helps extend the life of an item or product.
  • Share garden extras: Do you have a garden that produced more than you can eat? Don’t let it go to waste! Share what you can with coworkers, neighbors, and family. Still have too much? Check out some recipes to cook up what you’ve got, including the scraps! You can also look into donating to a food pantry or other similar food assistance program, but be sure to call ahead to check what is currently being accepted.
  • Plant native: Fall is a popular time for landscaping projects. Choose plants that are native to your area.

Recycle Right: Make sure recycling bins at home, work, and school have signage that helps everyone recycle right. Find out what can and cannot go in your recycling bin by checking your local recycling guidelines.

Looking for more ideas? Visit DEC’s Living the Green Life for tips.

Monday, September 20, 2021

DEC Celebrates the Conservationist’s 75th Anniversary

conservationistDEC’s  magazine, the Conservationist, turns 75 this year. The first issue of the magazine was published in August of 1946 and had some familiar themes, including an article about a new law called the Forest Practice Standards Act, articles promoting the many recreational opportunities found at Cranberry Lake in St. Lawrence County, and the challenges faced by the Conservation Department (DEC’s predecessor) in constructing fire towers in the Adirondack and Catskill backcountry.

» Continue Reading.

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Compost Awareness Week Poster & Video Contest

compost week 2021 posterInternational Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) May 1 – 7, 2022 – Save the Date! This upcoming year’s ICAW 2022 theme, Recipe for Regeneration: Compost, focuses on the crucial role recycling our food scraps and yard trimmings plays by creating compost. When added to soil, compost results in a recipe that makes our food more nutritious, the air we breathe cleaner, and our climate healthier overall.

The poster and video contest is now open. The selected winners’ design and video will be used to promote International Compost Awareness Week around the U.S. Submit your poster design or video by November 1, 2021.

  • Video Contest (Ages 10 – 13): Submit a short video (less than 30 seconds) sharing something about using compost, sending food scraps to your compost bin or your town’s food waste collection, planting a garden using compost, or whatever creative way you would like to share something about ICAW and the theme, Recipe for Regeneration: Compost. Learn more about the poster contest and rules.
  • Poster Contest (Age 14 and older): Submit a poster design highlighting this years theme, Recipe for Regeneration: CompostLearn more about the poster contest and rules.

Friday, September 17, 2021

Recreation Highlight: Sharing Trails with Hunters

Hunting and trapping seasons are beginning to open throughout New York State. These activities are enjoyed by many as forms of recreation and a means of providing for their families. These activities can also benefit forest ecosystems by helping maintain healthy animal populations while reducing nuisance wildlife issues and, in some cases, decreasing transmission of wildlife diseases. Whether you are a hunter, trapper, or just enjoy getting outdoors in the fall, learning how to share public lands with other users will help keep you and fellow visitors safe.

» Continue Reading.

Friday, September 17, 2021

Outdoor Conditions (9/17): More seasonal closures

outdoor conditions logoThe following are the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for comprehensive and up-to-date information on seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.

High Peaks Wilderness: Per the conservation easement agreement with Elk Lake Lodge, the Lodge gates/trailhead access to the Dix Mountain range will close on October 12, 2021 for the duration of the big game season.

Lake George Wild Forest: Pole Hill Pond parking area in Bolton will be closed October 4-5 for repairs.

» Continue Reading.

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