Champlain Area Trails will formally open the newest addition to the CATS trail network on Sunday, June 25 in Willsboro, with a hike starting at 1 pm. All are invited to celebrate the grand opening of the “High Point Trail” which goes to the highest point on Willsboro Point.
The High Point Trail is on the property of Marsha and Bill Harbison, who developed the trail and have opened it to the public for hiking. CATS completed trail work, marked the trail, and created a small parking area trailhead. » Continue Reading.
On June 3, 2017 the Moriah Chamber of Commerce will celebrate National Trails Day by hosting hikes on four local Champlain Area Trails (CATS) trails. The hikes officially kick off at 10 am, but the public is welcome to join at any time throughout the day.
The four trails are; Belfry Mountain Trail, Big Hollow/Coot Hill Trail, Cheney Mountain Trail, Crowfoot Pond Trail.
There is no cost to participate and the public is welcome. The greeting tables will set up at the trail heads to welcome hikers, give information or answer questions, and to sell patches for the individual trails to anyone who would like to commemorate their accomplishment. » Continue Reading.
Against the backdrop of the Champlain Valley, the fourth Grand Hike to the Essex Inn will be held on May 13. Hosted by Champlain Area Trails (CATS), the 12-mile “Town-to-Town” hike travels CATS hiking trails and scenic back roads from Wadhams to Essex.
After parking at the Essex Inn, hikers ride free shuttle buses to Wadhams to begin the full hike back to Essex. Shuttle buses start to run at 11 am, with check-in across from the Dogwood Bakery in Wadhams from 11 am to 12:15 pm. » Continue Reading.
How can everyone benefit from trails? Let’s look at the past, present, and future.
The Champlain Valley was the last part added to the Adirondack Park. It has little public land and, until recently, few hiking trails. This limited the economic benefits of outdoor recreation because people bypassed the valley on their way to trails in the High Peaks. But, that is changing.
What led to the change? First, land conservation organizations and the state purchased key properties like Split Rock Wild Forest, Coon Mountain, and Black Kettle Farm. This expanded public access to the outdoors. Next, new “local-food” farms started up attracting young people and reviving the farm community. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS) is hosting the North Country’s fourth “Inn-to-Inn” hike on Saturday, May 13th. The 11-mile “Grand Hike to the Essex Inn” will be on CATS hiking trails and scenic back roads from Wadhams to the Essex Inn where there will be a “block party.” The celebration features the Zip City Blues Band, restorative yoga and chair massage provided by Lake Champlain Yoga & Wellness, kids crafts, a photo booth, and a buffet dinner. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS) recently conserved 128-acres on Murtaugh Hill in Beekmantown through a conservation easement donated by Dick and Leanna DeNeale. The wooded property is set in a large forested area where limiting development is expected to help maintain habitat connectivity for wildlife, protect clean water, and allow for a hiking trail.
The DeNeale Property was used as a research site for a SUNY Plattsburgh Wildlife Ecology and Management Class and is expected to be used for additional studies because of its proximity to the campus, varieties of habitat, and ecological features. The most recent study found that it had higher species richness and population densities than a forested site at lower elevation several miles away because of its intact habitat and lower level of human impact. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS) completed its first “tradeland” transaction at the end of 2016 when it accepted the gift of a 21-acre property in Crown Point and immediately sold it to fund its work to make trails and save land.
“Ray Asmar of Danbury, Connecticut contacted me in early 2016 about the property which he purchased in 1972,” said Chris Maron, CATS executive director in an announcement sent to the press. “He and his wife camped there occasionally but were now looking to find a new owner. Their children didn’t want it and selling it would have incurred capital gains taxes. So, he contacted me about donating it to us as a nature preserve. We inspected it and decided that although it was entirely forested, it didn’t meet our conservation criteria. I suggested he give it to us as a “tradeland” which we would sell and use the funds to advance our mission. He liked that idea because he could use the property for a beneficial purpose, get the tax benefits of donating the property at its current market value, and not be taxed for its increase in value if he sold it.” » Continue Reading.
The North Country SPCA will hold its fourth annual open house celebration this Saturday, August 20th from 10 am to 3 pm at the Frances Miller Adoption Center located at 7700 Route 9N in Elizabethtown.
The open house is free and will offer a variety of activities for the whole family, including face-painting, games, music and more. Local vendors from around the Adirondacks will be selling hand-crafted goods, there will be dog agility and training demonstrations, and dog microchipping for only $20 per dog. The day will also offer free adoptions of the SPCA’s many dogs and cats to approved applicants. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS), in conjunction with Shirley Forests will present a free workshop on Saturday, August 20 at the Whallonsburg Grange Hall in Whallonsburg, NY from 10:30 am to 3 pm on sustainable forest management.
Speakers will include Frank Shirley, president and Tim Castner, vice president of Shirley Forests, Chris Maron, executive director of Champlain Area Trails, Gary Goff, retired from Cornell Extension, and Deborah Boyce, forestry consultant.
Shirley Forest was established in 1955 by Dr. Hardy L. Shirley, then Dean of the SUNY College of Forestry. In 1978 the forest was incorporated, and in 1980 management of the forest was passed on to his children, Frank C. Shirley, Jon H. Shirley, and Emily Castner who are currently in the process of passing the forest on to the third generation, with Timothy Castner as vice president and David Shirley as treasurer. » Continue Reading.
This is the third year that my friends and I will be participating in the Champlain Area Trails Grand Hike (May 14th). Not only has it been a fun event, it has lead us through towns and trails in the Champlain Valley in a leisurely way. Our group is small, but we represent a variety of hiking expertise. The Grand Hike provides us an opportunity to walk together, converse and know that the end of the trail a cold beer and massage at the Essex Inn will be waiting for us. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS) is hosting it’s third annual inn-to-inn hike on Saturday, May 14, 2016. The 11-mile Grand Hike to the Essex Inn will take place on CATS hiking trails and scenic back roads from Wadhams to the Essex Inn, where there will be a block party celebration featuring live music, restorative yoga and chair massage provided by Lake Champlain Yoga & Wellness, kids crafts and a photo booth to commemorate the event.
Check-in is from 12:15 to 1:30 pm across from Dogwood Bakery in Wadhams. Participants are encouraged to park in Essex where, starting at 12:15 pm, free shuttles will take them from the Essex Inn to Wadhams.
The Champlain Area Trail Society (CATS) and Pok-o-MacCready Camps have joined together to present two Survival Skills courses on Saturday, December 12, 2015. The courses will be taught by a Pok-o-MacCready instructor on the Blueberry Hill Trail System in Elizabethtown.
“We want people to feel comfortable when they hike and explore new places,” CATS executive director Chris Maron said in a statement announcing the courses. “Our trails are pretty well-marked and with the new hiking opportunities in the Champlain Valley, being prepared will lead more people to visit the new trails.” » Continue Reading.
The North Country SPCA (NCSPCA) has launched a campaign on Adirondack Gives, Adirondack Foundation’s crowdfunding site. The NCSPCA is raising money for its low-cost Spay/Neuter Incentive Program, SNIP, which provides financial assistance for spaying and neutering pets.
Since November 2014, the SNIP program has helped nearly 150 local people spay and neuter their dogs and cats. » Continue Reading.
Champlain Area Trails (CATS) in Westport, NY has achieved land trust accreditation from the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, an independent program of the Land Trust Alliance.
“Accreditation with the Land Trust Alliance will provide greater confidence to landowners who work with us to permanently conserve their land and allow trails on their properties. It also assures the public and our donors that their support is well-placed,” Katharine Preston, Champlain Area Trails’ board chair said in an announcement to the press. “Our land trust is a stronger organization today having gone through the rigorous accreditation program.” » Continue Reading.
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