Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Hiker injuries on Bear Den, Wright Peak

forest ranger reportsRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Minerva
Essex County
Wilderness Search:
 On Nov. 7 at 12:30 p.m., Forest Ranger Quinn contacted DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch advising he was commencing a search for a lost hunter on Northwoods Club Road. Forest Rangers Kabrehl and Sabo were also contacted and responded to assist. At 3:34 p.m., Forest Rangers located the 19-year-old hunter from Wilton based on coordinates he provided, which placed him on the southwest side of Pine Mountain in the Hudson Gorge Wilderness Area. The hunter and Rangers proceeded out of the woods and at 5:30 p.m. The hunter was reunited with his hunting party and Forest Rangers cleared the scene.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Chasing waterfalls

How to celebrate a birthday on a chilly, rainy, late autumn day during Covid-19? Visit the waterfalls on the Grass River in the Tooley Pond Tract, of course.

It was not raining when Bruce and I left our house in Keene that mid-October day. A drizzling rain began falling after arriving in Saranac Lake, becoming more intense at Cranberry Lake. The rain had let-up some by the time we reached the trail to the first waterfall, Copper Rock.   

The Tooley Pond Tract includes a Forest Preserve parcel of 6,000 acres, including 20 miles along the South Branch of the Grass River in the northwestern Adirondacks. Our goal was to explore the six waterfalls along the route, an area an Adirondack Explorer article called “A cascade of riches,” noting that most of the falls cannot be viewed from the road. I first visited the falls shortly after reading this 2004 article written by Mark Bowie that welcomed readers on a waterfall hopping venture. Going again after all these years was on my bucket list. 

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Injured hunter in North Creek; search for missing hunters

forest ranger reportsRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Johnsburg
Warren County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Oct. 26 at 9:37 a.m., Warren County 911 transferred a call to DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch reporting an injured hunter on a ski trail near Gore Mountain in North Creek. Further information indicated the injury was a broken leg due to entrapment under a boulder. Forest Rangers Kabrehl, Donegan, and Quinn responded to assist. At 11:06 a.m., Rangers Quinn and Donegan reached the injured man, removed him from the boulder entrapment, and performed advanced wilderness first aid to a badly damaged leg with severe lacerations and a compound fracture. Forest Rangers and members of the North River Fire Department carried the 31-year-old hunter from Hudson Falls off the ledge in a litter to a location with ATV access. The hunter was transported to a local hospital for further medical treatment.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Share your favorite winter gear essentials

I was talking to digital editor Melissa Hart earlier this week about future projects, and one of the ideas we settled on was bolstering our web and social media content aimed at people who are new to outdoor activities and the Adirondack Park. I’m talking about topics such as essential gear and info that can aid with trip planning.

At the Explorer, we’ve always focused on this type of content, but now the demand seems even greater because of the continuing rise in new visitors to the Adirondack Park.

The timing to start rolling out this material is also good because this type of info is extremely important in the winter months, when the environment is less forgiving for outdoor users. If you have problems in the woods when it’s 85 degrees, things can get uncomfortable. However, if you get lost when it’s 15 degrees, things can get very serious quickly. So you better be prepared before heading out.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Missing teen, hikers, hunters in five separate incidents

forest ranger logoRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions involve lost hunters, missing hikers and more:

Town of Watson
Lewis County
Wilderness Search:
 On Oct. 22 at 7:08 p.m., Lewis County 911 transferred a call reporting a lost hunter to DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch. The hunter’s friend contacted 911 reporting that his friend was disoriented and could not be reached by radio. Forest Rangers Evans, Thomes, and Lee responded to assist. Ranger Evans was first on scene and went into the woods, along with a Lewis County Deputy Sheriff, and the reporting party. Ranger Evans advised the responders located the lost hunter at 9:11 p.m. The 59-year-old hunter from Queensbury was escorted out of the woods to his vehicle and the Rangers were cleared from the scene.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, October 22, 2020

The St. Regis Canoe Area: An Ideal Paddle

With few paddling days left this season, it makes sense that your final outing is one that will provide a lasting memory.

One trip worth considering is the Paul Smiths/St Regis Lakes route, which combines awesome natural beauty, fantastic architecture, history and some really cool stories.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Overturned canoe and lost hikers in Hamilton County

forest ranger logoRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Village of Saranac Lake – Harrietstown
Franklin County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Oct. 15 at 1:12 p.m., DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a report of an overturned canoe in the Second Pond boat area on Lower Saranac Lake. One person was on shore and uncertain if her companion was still in the water or on shore looking for their dog. Forest Ranger Balerno and DEC Operations staff responded and confirmed the two subjects were out of the water looking for the dog. At 2:20 p.m., Forest Rangers Evans and Balerno located the couple from Oreland, Pennsylvania, and their dog, loaded the group onto a DEC boat, and returned them to their vehicle at the launch.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

2021 Empire State Winter Games Cancelled

eswg rail jamRegarding the 2021 Empire State Winter Games, a statement from Molly Mayer, Executive Director of the event:

After careful consultation with our sponsors, sport coordinators, and local/state officials regarding the health and safety of everyone in our industry – our athletes, coaches, volunteers, spectators, and our longtime partners – we have made the difficult decision to postpone the 41st annual Empire State Winter Games in the North Country. Empire State Winter Games events originally scheduled for January 28 – 31, 2021 will not take place. The challenges and uncertainty that COVID-19 has presented prevent the organization from appropriately planning, organizing, and producing events safely in 30+ different sports.

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, October 18, 2020

Enjoying our environment

We’re wrapping up production of our November/December magazine issue, and we think Mike Lynch’s photography and writing in it should alert a lot of readers to recreational and environmental aspects of the Adirondacks that they hadn’t previously considered. For one thing, it seems that a lot of people who enjoy our mountains weren’t aware that they were home to salmon — either historically or right now.

Well, they are, and Mike made a number of trips to the Boquet River to see and photograph them running there. (Above is a long exposure he snapped of a landlocked Atlantic salmon cresting in the river.) Those fish, which the state has stocked but in some years will also reproduce naturally in the river, offer hope for a thriving wild salmon fishery in the park.

» Continue Reading.


Friday, October 16, 2020

DEC is Capable of Testing Limited Entry for High Peaks in 2021

route 73On this 2020 Columbus Day weekend, peak use of parts of the High Peaks and Giant Mountain Wilderness areas in the Adirondack Park were again exceeded. Now is the time to consider a permit reservation or limited entry system for key points of entry into these wilderness areas as necessary, helpful, practical, and practicable.

Adirondack Wild is concerned with a spate of recent comments made to North Country Public Radio that our NYS DEC is not ready to launch a limited entry or permit reservation system. Of course, DEC is not ready right now. They have not been given any direction from the Governor and the DEC Commissioner to get and be ready. Given such a direction and expectation, DEC could be ready in summer and fall of 2021. DEC is fully capable of studying, gaining public input, designing, and implementing with partners a fair and effective limited entry pilot program next year.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Lost hikers on High Peaks trails and Catamount

forest ranger logoRecent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of North Elba
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Oct. 5 at 7:45 p.m., Essex County 911 transferred a call to DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch reporting two hikers lost off the Street and Nye Mountains Trail in the High Peaks Wilderness Area. Forest Ranger Lewis responded and located the hikers from Rochester at 9:51 p.m. before starting the trek back to the trailhead. At 11:18 p.m., Ranger Lewis and the couple arrived back to the trailhead at the Adirondak Loj and were cleared from the scene.

» Continue Reading.


Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Tooley Pond Conservation Easement Gets an Upgrade

tooley pond waterway accessA five-person Student Conservation Association (SCA) crew recently constructed some new amenities on the Tooley Pond Conservation Easement in the Town of Clare in Saint Lawrence County. The team built a primitive campsite on the Allen Pond Trail, complete with a new short trail to the campsite, an earthen tent pad, a rock ring fireplace, and a trail to a box privy site near the campsite. The project took just two and a half days to complete.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, October 12, 2020

DEC Releases Recreation Plan for Croghan Tract

crogan tract mapThe New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released a final Recreation Management Plan (RMP) for the Croghan Tract Conservation Easement. The Croghan Tract Conservation Easement is comprised of 12,816 acres of private forestland in the towns of Croghan and Watson in Lewis County.

Included in the final RMP is an inventory of natural and man-made resources and various opportunities for public recreation:

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Saturday, October 10, 2020

High Peaks Wilderness trail update

Some recent Adirondack High Peaks trail news from the DEC:

  • PHELPS BROOK FOOTBRIDGE OUT: The high-water crossing footbridge over Phelps Brook on the Van Ho Trail to Mt. Marcy just above Marcy Dam came to the end of its service life and was removed by DEC. When Phelps Brook is running high and the low water crossing is unsafe, hikers can use the newly developed Phelps Brook Lean-to Trail between the South Meadow (aka Marcy Dam Truck) Trail (0.5 mile north of Marcy Dam) and the Van Ho Trail (above the crossing). The trail is marked with red Foot Trail markers.
  • ELK LAKE TRAILS: The two trails on the Elk Lake Conservation Easement Tract which provide access to the Dix Mountain, Marcy Mountain, and the Colvin Range will close to public use on October 16 and will remain closed through Northern Zone Big Game Hunting Season.

Click here for the full Adirondack Outdoor Conditions report for this week.Calling all hikers: We’re curious to know how this Columbus Day weekend is going to go, as it’s usually a busy one even in a “normal year.” Since we’re not able to be everywhere at once, hoping you can help!

Send us your pics from the trails  to [email protected]. What we’re seeing so far this weekend: Numbers of hikers are still strong, despite the closed Canadian border.

Scenes from Saturday
Click here to watch Explorer publisher Tracy Ormsbee look for a parking spot at Adirondak Loj at 5:20 a.m. today (Oct. 10).

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Lost hikers in Bolton, Schroon, Arietta

forest ranger reportsRecent DEC Forest Ranger Actions:

Town of North Elba
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On Oct. 1 at 5:42 p.m., DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a call from a 65-year-old hiker from Long Meadow, Massachusetts, reporting he had injured his ankle near MacIntyre Falls. The hiker said his hiking party braced his injury and he would hobble down the trail with them. Forest Ranger LaPierre responded, hiking up the trail to the man’s location while Forest Rangers Evans, Burns, Gliddi, and Booth came in with a six-wheel ATV. Once on scene, Ranger LaPierre splinted the injury and assisted the hiking party to the Whales Tail Junction where they were met by the secondary group of Rangers and driven out to the trailhead to their vehicle.

» Continue Reading.



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