The 62nd Annual Whitewater Derby has been set for Saturday and Sunday, May 4-5 in the Town of Johnsburg Hamlets of North River, North Creek and Riparius, along the Hudson River.
The Derby began as a celebration of the Upper Hudson River and it’s history especially the log drives which ended in 1950. The Derby began in 1958 and the Hudson River Whitewater Derby is one of the oldest canoe and kayak races in the United States.
Although most of the Adirondack hut-to-hut discussion lately has focused on Boreas Ponds as the state considers the classification of the Forest Preserve land, another route is much closer to becoming reality: the North Creek-Indian Lake traverse with a Hudson Gorge rafting trip.
Jack Drury of Leading E.D.G.E, who with Joe Dadey and Duane Gould prepared the 2015 hut-to-hut plan for the five towns of Long Lake, Newcomb, Indian Lake, Minerva, and North Hudson for the Department of Environmental Conservation, called it the low-hanging fruit of the report and believes it will be ready by summer 2018. » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack chapter of the Nature Conservancy has purchased 753 acres with a two-mile stretch of the Main Branch of the Moose River on the western edge of the Adirondack Park.
The conservancy bought the property for $880,000 and intends to sell it to a buyer who will protect it.
The two miles of river are part of a 13-mile stretch of whitewater that is rafted in the spring. “It’s nice to know that this section of the Moose River will be preserved in its wild state,” said Garry Staab, a rafting guide and owner of Adirondack River Outfitters.
State Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos has refused to renew the guide’s license of Patrick Cunningham, the owner of Hudson River Rafting Company in North Creek.
Cunningham has run afoul of the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s regulations on several occasions. In June 2015, DEC staff refused Cunningham’s request to renew his license.
Cunningham appealed that decision, but it was upheld by Administrative Law Judge Michael S. Caruso the following November after a hearing. Caruso said the department had ample reasons for denying Cunningham a guide’s license.
“Where do you plan to camp tonight?” our river guide yelled to the young man paddling his raft past our campsite. “North River,” he said.
“That’s too far, you’ll never make it before dark,” our guide responded – although his words went unheard as the raft disappeared around a bend of the Upper Hudson River.
More rafts followed with a half-dozen young men and women waving and laughing as they paddled by our campsite, seemingly oblivious to the set of whitewater rapids they were about to encounter. » Continue Reading.
From time to time I’ve played with the idea of putting together a list of quintessential Adirondack adventures. It would include, for example, climbing the Trap Dike on Mount Colden, skiing Mount Marcy on a bluebird day, and scaling the eight-hundred-foot cliff on Wallface.
Last summer, I ticked off another adventure on my bucket list: rafting the Hudson Gorge.
My friend Mike got me into this one. He arranged a trip with North Creek Rafting Company with the intention of writing an article for the Associated Press. I readily agreed to shoot some photos and video.
Our Hudson Gorge outing differed from most in one important respect: instead of riding in rafts, we piloted inflatable kayaks, known as duckies. These vessels are open, like canoes, but as in a kayak, you maneuver with a double-bladed paddle and sit with your legs stretched out.
“It’ll be like going down the river in a lawn chair,” remarked Nate Pelton, the thirty-eight-year-old owner of North Creek Rafting.
There are so many times that I wish I could be in two places at the same time. Though my family is committed and looking forward to hiking The Grand Hike from Westport to Essex on May 3rd, the Adirondack Adventure Festival in North Creek is taking place around the same time.
The owner of Hudson River Rafting Company has been fined $25,000 for sending customers on whitewater trips without a licensed guide—violating a court order just a few days after reopening his business following earlier legal troubles.
Supreme Court Justice Richard Giardino found Pat Cunningham, owner of the North Creek business, guilty of contempt of court, in a decision dated December 3.
Hudson River Rafting sent customers on trips with an unlicensed guide at least five times in July and August. In each instance, the guide put in the river at railroad tracks near the hamlet of North River. The rapids there are not as big as in the Hudson Gorge, but the first part of the trip takes place on a stretch of river where state law requires companies to provide licensed guides.
The state attorney general’s office is seeking once again to shut down Hudson River Rafting Company, alleging that the company violated a court order by sending clients on whitewater trips without a licensed guide.
Assistant Attorney General G. Nicholas Garin says in court papers that the company and its owner, Patrick Cunningham, violated the order a month or so after resuming business this summer.
Last fall, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed suit against Cunningham accusing him of running an unsafe business. He sought to shut Hudson River Rafting permanently, but state Supreme Court Justice Richard Giardino ruled in May that Cunningham could resume operations under certain conditions, among them that he deploy only licensed rafting guides on trips on the upper Hudson River, including the Hudson Gorge. » Continue Reading.
The Governor’s Inaugural Adirondack Challenge, a week of events and activities celebrating Adirondack rivers, lakes and streams culminates this Sunday, July 21st in Indian Lake with a Whitewater Rafting Race down the Indian River, flat water boat races on Indian Lake and the Adirondack Challenge Festival at Byron Park.
The Festival will take place from 11am until 7pm, and the town’s streets, restaurants, stores, and public places will be alive with things to do, taste or see. Byron Park’s activities will feature the Taste of NY tent for samples of many NYS local products, three live bands playing throughout the day, classic Adirondack guide boat and canoe displays by several local Adirondack craftsmen, many children’s activities including Wii Whitewater Rafting, the award ceremony for the water races (3:15 pm) and much more. » Continue Reading.
The 15-mile flat-water canoe race, dubbed the Adirondack Challenge, may be the cause for all the commotion happening around Indian Lake and beyond, but it is the full two weeks of daily events that are bringing people from far and wide to these quiet Central Adirondack hamlets.
Indian Lake’s Adirondack Challenge consists only partly of Governor Cuomo’s Invitational Whitewater Race for state and local elected officials. The other component is the Flat Water Race, organized by MAC’s Canoe, for professional and amateur four-person teams competing for a cash purse. Preregistration closed Mondy for the July 21st race starting from the NYSDEC Indian Lake Island Campground boat launch. » Continue Reading.
A state Supreme Court judge has ruled that Hudson River Rafting Company must post a $50,000 performance bond to stay in business and pay $12,000 in fines for violations of the law.
However, Justice Richard Giardino refused the state’s request to shut down the rafting company for good. He also dismissed the state’s claim that the company had engaged in false advertising by billing its rafting trips as safe. » Continue Reading.
The owner of Hudson River Rafting Company knew a guide had a drinking problem, but he continued to let him take clients on whitewater trips, one of which resulted in the death of a client who fell out of a raft and drowned last year, according to sworn statements.
The guide—Rory Fay of North Creek—later admitted he was intoxicated at the time of the accident. He pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide, driving while intoxicated, and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle.
In a statement to state police, Fay said Pat Cunningham, who owns the company, and one of his assistants, Mark Lebrecque, knew he drank heavily. At the time, Fay was living in a guides’ house owned by Cunningham. » Continue Reading.
The state attorney general’s office has won the bulk of its lawsuit against Hudson River Rafting Company and its owner, Patrick Cunningham.
State Supreme Court Justice Richard Giardino ruled on March 29 in favor of the state on three of four causes of action, finding that Hudson River Rafting violated the law by repeatedly sending customers on whitewater-rafting trips with unlicensed guides and transporting them in buses with unlicensed drivers.
The judge has yet to determine any penalties, but he continued an order forbidding Hudson River Rafting from running whitewater-rafting trips. The whitewater season began a few weeks ago. » Continue Reading.
A rafting guide whose client drowned in the Indian River last September has been sentenced to a year in jail and five years of probation.
Rory Fay, 37, of North Creek admitted he was drunk when he and the client, Tamara Blake, 53, of Columbus, Ohio, fell out of the raft on the morning of September 27. Blake’s boyfriend stayed in the raft and paddled to shore. Fay also managed to get to shore. Blake’s body was found five miles downstream in the Hudson River.
Fay, who worked for Hudson River Rafting Company, pleaded guilty in November to criminally negligent homicide, a felony, as well as two misdemeanors, driving while intoxicated and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. » Continue Reading.