Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Harmful algal blooms are here

harmful algal bloomsIt’s harmful algal bloom season, and Lake George had its first reported one of the season last week.

Getting information about it was messy. The Lake George Association first reported the suspicious bloom, found during a routine Citizens Statewide Lake Assessment Program survey, to the state Department of Environmental Conservation. DEC staff confirmed it was a harmful algal bloom and posted that information on its notifications page. I saw that report and requested information from both LGA staff and the DEC. What then ensued was a back-and-forth between DEC and LGA, via email and phone. It was clear that though the bloom was documented a couple of days before, no one was on the same page about how to get information out about it. There was even discrepancy over whether to call it a harmful algal bloom.

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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

12 Ways Indian Lake Supervisor Brian Wells Gets Historic Forever Wild Decision Wrong

connector trail

In an op-ed run in the Albany Times Union on August 1, 2021 and in the Adirondack Almanack, Town of Indian Lake Supervisor Brian Wells got many things wrong about the recent historic forever wild court decision. He makes serious accusations, yet he twists, bends, and distorts reality to fit his narrative. The one thing that he got right was that “Class II Community Connector Snowmobile Trails” were struck down by New York’s highest court because they violated Article 14, Section 1, of the State Constitution, the forever wild clause.

Here are a dozen ways that Brian Wells plays fast and loose with the truth.

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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Was the Adirondack Park Agency (APA) Duped?

upper saranac

APA mandate is to “ensure compliance with the laws the Agency administers” including the New York State Freshwater Wetlands Act. Instead, APA did the exact opposite with a recent decision permitting the virtual destruction of a Category 1 Wetland- the highest designation for a wetland – on Lot 9, Deerwood, Upper Saranac Lake (USL). For no apparent reason, other than convenience of the new landowner, APA issued an amended permit.

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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

“Staff should rely on this policy.” Really ?

essex chain stakeholders

Forest Preserve stakeholders meet with DEC staff to discuss management alternatives, Essex Chain Lakes, 2012. Photo by Dave Gibson

The NYS Court of Appeals ruled on May 4 of this year in favor of plaintiff Protect the Adirondacks and against the State of New York, deciding that Snowmobile Community Connector trails as planned, permitted, and constructed by the Department of Environmental Conservation during the first term of Governor Andrew Cuomo violated the “forever wild” clause, Section 1 of Article 14, NYS Constitution.

It took the DEC until June 30 to formally respond to the Court’s ruling, and that formal response came in the form of an internal DEC memorandum issued by DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos and handed out at a recent meeting of the DEC’s Forest Preserve Advisory Committee on which I serve as a representative of Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve.

In his first paragraph, Commissioner Seggos wrote that:

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Monday, August 2, 2021

Sabotaging Trail Deal Was No Way to Protect the Adirondacks 

snowmobile trail

By Brian Wells 

This is a story that should have had a happy ending. 

A story of five Adirondack towns working with state government and environmental non-profits on an agreement to expand the taxpayer-owned Forest Preserve, improve public recreation and bring new economic growth to the area. 

The Community Connector Trails agreement would have helped turn the page on decades of Adirondack Region job losses brought on by industry disinvestment and Forest Preserve expansion, and established a model for the type of common-sense, compromise solutions needed for many problems confronting the Adirondack Park. 

Instead, it’s a sad story of misplaced trust and lost opportunity, ending with the towns and the people who live there getting left out in the cold. 

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Monday, August 2, 2021

Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation launches tackle buy-back program

Loon

The Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation invites Adirondack anglers to participate in its “Lead Tackle Buy Back Program” to protect Common Loons from lead poisoning.

Anglers can trade in their lead sinkers and jigs this summer by bringing them to any of the 8 participating retailers around the Adirondack Park. The shops include Woods and Waters and Blue Line Sports in Saranac Lake; Tupper Lake Bait & Tackle; Hoss’s in Long Lake; Old Forge Hardware; Crossroads in Chestertown; Norm’s Bait & Tackle in Crown Point; and Fish307.com in Lake George.

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Monday, August 2, 2021

Upcoming Events at the Wild Center

wild center offers canoeing on the raquette river

Tupper Lake, NY – The Wild Center is offering a wide variety of events this summer. Here are a few of the many activities available:

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Sunday, August 1, 2021

Message In a Bottle

bottles on shelves

When I was a boy growing up in our house on 1 Stevenson Lane, my mom had an antique bottle collection that she kept on a shelf.  One of those bottles had a rustically intricate attached metal stopper. The engraved circular glass on the front read “ISAAC MERKEL & SON, BOSS LAGER, SARANAC LAKE.” That bottle always held a special fascination for me. I still have it.

It all began innocently enough, quite by accident really, about three summers ago as I quietly rowed my Zen boat canoe from South Creek into camp. As I crossed some shallows near the shore of an island as I entered the lake, something glistened blue, reflecting morning sunlight from the lake’s bottom.

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Sunday, August 1, 2021

August Harvest of the Month | Peppers

serrano peppers

Photo of serranos courtesy of https://peppergeek.com/serrano-peppers/

History and Facts

Peppers are the berry-fruits of plants in the genus capsaicin which are in the nightshade family, with tomatoes and eggplants. The spicy “chili peppers” and mild “sweet peppers” and “bell peppers” are all native to tropical parts of the Americas. Prehistoric remains of peppers have been found in Central and South America. 

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Sunday, August 1, 2021

Weekly news round up

A collection of interesting reads:

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Saturday, July 31, 2021

NFCT to Auction Two Birchbark Canoes

birchbark canoe built by craftspeople of the maniwaki reserve in quebec

WAITSFIELD, Vt. — The Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT) will auction off two birchbark canoes this summer: one built by Henri Vaillancourt and the other by the craftspeople of the Maniwaki Reserve in Quebec.

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Saturday, July 31, 2021

Spirit of Generosity: Supporting Child Care

Child Care issues

Katie Falzetta and her family. Photo by Erika Bailey, provided by Adirondack Foundation

Across the Adirondack region, individuals, businesses, organizations, and communities have continuously demonstrated their Spirit of Generosity by investing in one of our most pressing needs: early childhood education. But there’s still much to be done.

Finding affordable child care is a challenge for nearly everyone, but especially so for single-parent households and working families with mid to low-wage jobs. Adirondack Foundation, through its Birth to Three Alliance,  has heard countless stories of parents who struggle to balance work with raising their children — and in many cases, the two things are inseparable.

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Friday, July 30, 2021

Short-eared owls: Wide-ranging, funny in flight

Photo by Joe Kostoss

Short-eared owls are one of the most widely ranging members of the Strigidae owl family, absent only from Australia and Antarctica. They favor grasslands, fields, tundra, meadows, airports, marshes and bogs, any open habitat home to their favorite prey, moles, voles, deer mice, shrews, small birds, and insects.

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Friday, July 30, 2021

Outdoor conditions (7/30): Route 73 roadwork

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.

Essex County: The New York State Department of Transportation has advised that a portion of State Route 73 in the Town of Keene, Essex County, will be reduced to a single lane with alternating flows of traffic controlled by flaggers on weekdays between the hours of 6 a.m. and 5 p.m., beginning Tuesday, July 27, to facilitate a paving project. The lane reduction will start approximately two miles north of the intersection with U.S. Route 9 and continue to the northern intersection with Airport Road. Work is scheduled to be completed by the end of August, weather permitting.

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Friday, July 30, 2021

Latest news headlines

Here’s a look at news from around the Adirondacks this week:

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