Thursday, December 6, 2018

Acid Rain Controls Near Finish Line, Obstacles Remain

Dead Red Spruce GothicsAs the nation mourns the passing of George H. W. Bush, the President who signed the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 creating America’s first acid rain program – a conference of scientists and advocates has concluded that the fight to stop acid rain is nearly won. Sadly, victory is now in doubt due to the Trump administration’s proposed pollution rule changes.

It feels like we are a marathon runner who has been tripped with the finish line in sight. In 1990, President Bush understood that the United States was supposed to set an example for the rest of the world when it comes to protecting the environment. The current Environmental Protection Agency is pushing hard in the other direction, imposing reductions to environmental protections that took a generation to enact. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Current Adirondack Outdoor Conditions (Dec 6)

CompassThis weekly report of outdoor recreation conditions in the Adirondacks is compiled each Thursday afternoon and fully updated by Friday afternoon.

Contribute Your Knowledge: Add a comment below, or send your observations, corrections, updates, and suggestions to adkalmanack@gmail.com.

Learn and practice the seven Leave No Trace principles. Carry out what you have carried in. Do not leave gear, food, or other items at lean-tos and campsites. Do not litter. Take the free online Leave No Trace course here.

BE PREPARED! Start slow, gain experience. Always carry proper safety equipment – including plenty of food, water, flashlights, space blanket, emergency whistle, first aid kit, fire making tools, extra clothing layers and socks, and a map and compass – inform someone of your itinerary, and be prepared to spend an unplanned night in the woods in cold temperatures. Just before entering the backcountry or launching a boat check the National Weather Service watches, warnings, and advisories here. Follow Adirondack weather forecasts at Burlington and Albany and consult the High Elevation, Recreation, or Lake Champlain forecasts.

December 6th, 2018 – SPECIAL NOTICES » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Charles ‘Huckleberry Charlie’ Sherman (Part 5)

It had been a busy year, but if anything, Charlie Sherman was more active in 1915, receiving ample media coverage for his many exploits — and more than a few surprises. In January, the Ogdensburg Journal reported on his visit to Watertown’s relief kitchen located on Jackman Street. He dropped in, looked things over, was offered supper, and accepted, afterward offering effusive praise of the food, facility, and staff, and rewarding them with brief and witty speeches on a number of topics.

At the end of the month, he showed up at Watertown High School and was guided to the auditorium, where he took the stage to perform several songs and a clog dance. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Out of the Closet: Adirondack Ugly Sweater Events

Even thoughtful gifts don’t always exactly fit your taste. Give that ugly sweater a chance to redeem itself (and the sweater giver) by wearing it an Adirondack ugly sweater events. Just like that bridesmaid dress we are always told can be repurposed, that festive holiday sweater can now raise funds for children’s art classes, food pantries, or even a pint of beer. Good luck.

On December 8, BluSeed Studios will host an Ugly Sweater 5K Run/Walk to help fund their annual free spring break and after school art classes for area children. Each participant will receive a raffle ticket for artisan items. Registration and the race begins at their Cedar Street location in Saranac Lake, and continues around Moody Pond to end back at BluSeed Studio for hot beverages and muffins. Admission is $20 for adults (which includes a commemorative artisan tile/trivet), $5 for students and leashed dogs, while children in strollers are free. You can register the morning of the event beginning at 8:30 am for a 9 am start. Prizes are awarded for top three male and female as well as the ugliest sweater. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, December 5, 2018

The Globe: A Well-Rounded Perspective

The Gall Peters projection of the world mapGlobal warming might be a lot more fun if it came with a thermostat. Like most people in northern NY State, there are times when I wish it was not quite so chilly. If I could tweak some climate-dial so my tomato plants could safely go into the garden on May 1, guaranteed frost-free, it would be wonderful. And few of us would complain if we could suddenly grow peaches and oranges in our backyards.

But aside from a complete lack of control over the whole process, my main gripe about global warming is its first name. It’s just that hardly anyone besides astronauts has a decent grip on the massive size of the round lump of water and rock upon which we all live. Whenever there is a cold snap, a lot of us — me included sometimes — wish global warming would hurry the heck up and get on with it. And some of us even question whether weather is actually changing at all. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, December 5, 2018

2019 Campground Ambassador Program Planned

DEC Campground AmbassadorThe New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced the opening of the 2019 application period for the Campground Ambassador program as part of the state’s Adventure NY initiative to connect more New Yorkers with the outdoors.

Volunteer Campground Ambassadors support DEC campground staff in welcoming and assisting the millions of visitors that vacation in the Adirondack and Catskill parks each year. The program was introduced last year, and the first group of ambassadors were working in the field during Summer 2018. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, December 5, 2018

VIEW’s Executive Director Stepping Down

Jeff Grimshaw, Executive Director of View Arts Center in Old Forge, has announced he will step down on December 14th, 2018.

Grimshaw has led View for the past two years. Bernadette Sunderlin, Director of Operations at View, will serve as interim director while View searches for a new director. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Gray Jays: Souls of Dead Woodsmen

gray jay The sound of a gray jay (Perisoreus canadensis) evokes an image of the North Woods: dark green spruce trees, spire-like balsam fir, and bare-branched tamaracks silhouetted against a raw, slate-colored sky; the smell of woodsmoke in the air and a dusting of fresh snow on the ground. I see these birds occasionally around our cabin in northern New Hampshire and on hikes at higher elevations in the White Mountains. They’ve always had an air of mystery about them.

The bird is often heard before it’s seen. The gray jay has a number of calls, whistles, and imitations in his repertoire: many are harsh sounding, and I have witnessed gray jays mimic the scream of the blue jay. My favorite call, though, is what some ornithologists refer to as “the whisper song.” This is a soft, warbling chatter that can sound either cheerful or melancholy – depending, I suppose, on the mood of the listener. Not long after hearing the whisper song, a group of birds will suddenly appear, silently swooping and gliding from branch to branch. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Arts Center Closing for Season December 15th

Blue Mountain Lake Arts CenterThe Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts has announced a last day/holiday sale and celebration has been set for Saturday, December 15th, from 10 am to 4 pm. Support local artisans and the Arts Center with 10 to 50% off selected merchandise. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

‘Lost Buildings of Saranac Lake’ on Display

Model of the Berkeley Hotel by John WheelerAn exhibition of models by John Wheeler of the lost buildings of Saranac Lake was revealed on Friday, November 30th. The exhibit, titled “Remember When?” will be displayed for the holiday season in the windows of the former Sears building at 66 Main Street. » Continue Reading.


Monday, December 3, 2018

Man Dies On Owl’s Head; Woman Rescued From Whiteface

DEC Forest RangerNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents in the Adirondacks. Working with other state agencies, local emergency response organizations and volunteer search and rescue groups, Forest Rangers locate and extract lost, injured or distressed people from the Adirondack backcountry.

What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.


Monday, December 3, 2018

New Book On Adirondack Guideboats Published

adirondack guideboat bookThe life’s work of Stephen Sulavik, The Adirondack Guideboat: Its Origins, Its Builders and Their Boats (Bauhan Publishing, 2018) provides a heavily illustrated history of the iconic Adirondack guideboat.

Stephen Sulavik was a pulmonary surgeon fascinated by the guideboats. Upon his death, his book was shepherded to publication by his friend and former Chairman of the Board of the Adirondack Museum, Robert Worth. He enlisted the help of historian Edward “Ted” Comstock and guideboat builder and expert Christopher Woodward to revise and complete the project. » Continue Reading.


Monday, December 3, 2018

New Champlain Maritime Museum Director Named

lake champlain maritime museum logoLake Champlain Maritime Museum (LCMM) has announced Susan Evans McClure is to become its new Executive Director in early 2019.

McClure was previously the Director of Programs and Audience Development at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, and has been Executive Director of VSA Vermont since last year. » Continue Reading.


Monday, December 3, 2018

Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Workshop Set For Warrensburg

Hemlock woolly adelgidNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Warren County Cornell Cooperative Extension have announced a workshop on hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) has been set for December 15, at the DEC Region 5 Office in Warrensburg.

Charlotte Malmborg, a natural resources technician with the New York State Hemlock Initiative at Cornell University (NYSHI), will provide information on the importance of hemlock trees in northeastern forests, the threat presented by HWA, and how landowners can identify and manage HWA infestations. She will also introduce New York State Hemlock Initiative’s research of biological control opportunities and describe the role of NYSHI in promoting hemlock conservation in New York State. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, December 2, 2018

Paul Hetzler Ranting About Ravens

common ravens Over the past two decades, biologists have been busy studying one of our native mythological birds. At once the most widely distributed member of the crow family, and a figure revered across the globe by civilizations both ancient and modern, the common raven (Corvus corax) is anything but ordinary.

In Norse mythology, the god Odin had two ravens who flew around the world gathering information for him, and the Irish giant and culture-hero Cú Chulainn was honored by a visit from the goddess Morrígan who appeared as a raven. To the modern Haida and Tlingit peoples out West, the raven is a bird of surpassing intelligence, as well as a culture-hero who is responsible for creating humans, and causing much mischief as an inveterate trickster. » Continue Reading.