New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced Tuesday that a second DEC Forest Ranger has been deployed to Montana to assist in fighting western wildfires. Monday, New York State welcomed home Forest Ranger Timothy Carpenter at the end of his two-week assignment fighting the Bootleg Fire raging in Oregon.
Ranger Carpenter, from Steuben County, began his assignment July 10, when he joined more than 2,000 federal, state, and local fire agencies battling the Bootleg Fire in Oregon. The Bootleg Fire started on July 6 and has burned more than 400,000 acres. It is now approximately 53 percent contained. Sustained winds and low humidity make this a difficult fire to get under control. The fire has already destroyed more than 200 buildings, forcing the evacuation of about 2,000 people.
Line drawing of the proposed Tumblehead Falls Dam (1895 )
I recently saw a Facebook post by singer/songwriter Dan Berggren in which he outlined the Rural Free Delivery route, of his Uncle Harry, in Minerva, N. Y. from 1915-1945. The song “When Harry Carried the Mail” reminded me of an article that I wrote for Adirondack Life, March/April, 2012 titled “Great Schroon Lake: The Dam Plan Would Have Altered the Park.”
In that article I wrote about the proposed dam that was to be constructed on the Schroon River at Tumblehead Falls, not far from Chestertown. (Great Schroon Lake: The Dam Plan Would Have Altered the Park) That dam was to be located at what has become to be known as Hello Mountain at mile marker 71 of the Northway. (On the mountain side across the Schroon River valley there are large white plywood letters spelling out the word “Hello” ) This was going to be the anchor of one side of a 70 foot-tall dam that would have impounded the Schroon River, all of Schroon Lake, Paradox Lake and Brant Lake. However there is more to the story than appeared in that article.
Recent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:
Town of North Elba
Wilderness Search: On July 22 at 11 p.m., DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a call from a pair of hikers reporting that a member of their party was overdue from hiking Mount Marcy in the High Peaks Wilderness Area. Forest Ranger LaPierre responded to the Adirondak Loj parking lot to interview the reporting party. At 1:36 a.m., Ranger LaPierre located the 33-year-old subject from New York City up the trail from Marcy Dam. The subject had suffered a knee injury, was unable to walk, and likely dehydrated. The Ranger splinted the injury and provided the hiker with warmth, food, and water. She escorted the hiker back to the outpost and set him up in a sleeping bag so he could rest while the Ranger continued back to the Loj. Ranger LaPierre then drove a UTV in to pick up the subject, and at 4:45 a.m., the hiker was reunited with his party and taken for further medical care.
DackMap Update Includes Online Parking Capacity, Virtual Trailhead Check-ins for High Peaks Region
ADK and DackMap are excited to announce an updated version of the cellphone application that includes real-time information for hikers visiting the High Peaks Wilderness. After announcing a partnership back in March, ADK and DackMap have worked together to improve the app so that it reaches Adirondack Park visitors well in advance of their arrival. The update includes:
The Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) is pleased to announce the opening of Twice Blessed, an exhibit featuring paintings from Holly Friesen and photographs from Tom Curley. The public is invited to the opening reception on Thursday, July 29th from 5:00 to 7:00pm in the Gallery @ LPCA, 17 Algonquin Drive, Lake Placid. The exhibit will run through October 2nd. Regular gallery hours are Wednesday through Saturday 1:00 to 5:00pm and admission is free.
The Explorer’s website, AdirondackExplorer.org, recently published a story contemplating the potential for marijuana to drive new tourism business in the park if local governments are open to allowing dispensaries. Under New York law, communities will have until the end of the year to decide whether they want to prohibit such businesses. Opting out would mean no local sales, but it wouldn’t make marijuana possession illegal under state law.
Beyond our core issues of the environment and outdoor recreation, we at the Explorer track rural economics affecting the park and its communities. So the questions surrounding new business and taxation are sure to generate intriguing stories as this new market emerges. Will cannabis and the Adirondacks, as one source in the story suggests, provide the sort of “match made in heaven” that some nature lovers seek? Will legalization and sales create new problems in a park already attracting millions of visitors? Time will tell.
A survey of 241 cities, villages and other jurisdictions along the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River shows that coastal damage from climate change will cost at least $1.94 billion over the next five years, with shoreline communities having already spent $878 million over the past two years. These figures only represent a fraction of the true need as not all shoreline jurisdictions are reflected in this figure.
Rob Fountain is a photojournalist and portrait painter who lives and works in Au Sable Forks. The exhibit “Catching the Light” will have 30 pieces on display. This includes 18 photographs revealing various landscape photography of the Au Sable Forks area and beyond and 6 drawing portraits and 6 portraits in oils and charcoal and linoleum prints.
Work progressing on sculpture “blue is the atmospheric refraction I see you through”
The internal stairway and frame of a new, temporary sculpture are taking shape outside the Adirondack History Museum. A scaffold of thick, fresh-sawn local cedar from Westport has slowly taken shape on a patch of lawn centered in front of the Colonial Garden.
Sculptor Randi Renate, of San Antonio, Texas, is a recent Masters in Fine Arts graduate from Yale School of Art where her thesis installation went unseen due to Covid-19 restrictions. Her transit to and through the Adirondack Mountains last year provided months of inspiration, and this work, she said, is a way to share her gratitude.
Join TAUNY in Plattsburgh for the next Grow and Tell Project garden tour of the season. The Grow and Tell Project is a 2021 partnership between TAUNY and littleGrasse Community Farm (Canton, NY), highlighting the local food and food traditions that help sustain us, through a series of garden tours, kitchen demonstrations, video and digital features, and more.
The second in the summer series, this garden tour brings us to Jane Desotelle’s “Plattsburgh Botanical Sanctuary” (Plattsburgh, NY), where Jane will show visitors the garden and share stories of how the things she grows and forages both connect her to her heritage and offer tasty flavors and medicinal properties for living a healthful and delicious life.
Senescence is the decline in vigor that happens to all creatures great and diminutive as they approach their species’ life-expectancy limit. Individual genetics matter, too, as does environment. For us, eating and sleeping well, cultivating gratitude, and laughing a lot can keep us healthier for longer. But at some point, even the best-preserved specimen can’t avoid the end.
I can recall a time when there were still tent platforms on all the prime spots along the shores of Lower & Middle Saranac lakes. Despite being built on state land, they all had “POSTED” signs. Engraved family signs hung on the doors of what had originally been intended as public camping sites. Many had docks, propane tanks, generators, all the trappings of private camps. Some had been occupied by the same family for more than a generation. Many of them had become quite elaborate.