Stillwater Fire Tower is set to be lit on September 1st from 9 to 9:30 pm, as part of “Light the Tower.” Lighting fire towers on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend started with fire tower enthusiasts in the Catskills.
This is the third year Stillwater has been lit. Stillwater Fire Tower can be seen from the Bald Mt/Rondaxe tower, from Stillwater Reservoir, Tug Hill and the Black River Valley, and Fort Drum’s air control tower.
The Hurricane Mountain Fire Tower in the Hurricane Mountain Wilderness Area and St. Regis Mountain Fire Tower in the Saint Regis Canoe Area will also be lighted.
As we neared the summit of St. Regis Mountain this past January, the conditions changed dramatically. Tree limbs — caked in snow and ice — hung down over the trail, and as we walked crouched through the tangle of branches, snow cascaded upon us.
“Most of the time I go past that rock outcropping, I feel like I’m home free,” said Doug Fitzgerald, co-chairman of Friends of St. Regis Mountain Fire Tower. “Not today.”
The conditions slowed our travel, but the scenic beauty more than compensated for any inconvenience. The coating of ice and snow on the trees gave them a surreal quality as they glimmered in the afternoon light sneaking through the clouds. We soon emerged from the snow-covered woods onto an open expanse of rock covered by a layer of light snow. » Continue Reading.
The 3rd week of August artists assemble in Saranac Lake for the Adirondack Plein Air Festival. This year, from August 18 to 22, fifty painters from all over the east coast and Canada are taking part. Registration opened online March 1 and filled in less than 48 hours, as both new and repeat artists were eager to attend. In order to keep the annual Show & Sale at manageable numbers, it was decided to limit participation to 50. » Continue Reading.
Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH) has partnered with two volunteer groups, the Friends of Hurricane Mountain and the Friends of St. Regis Mountain Fire Tower to facilitate the restoration, interpretation, and management of the Hurricane Mountain and St. Regis Mountain fire towers.
Both groups were formed to advocate for the preservation and public use of these towers, which were built in the early 20th century to protect Adirondack forests from devastating forest fires. In November, 2014, the New York State Department of Conservation (DEC) issued a final unit management plan that would recognize the historic significance of the towers and allow for their restoration. » Continue Reading.
Last winter, my daughter Becky and her fiancé, Joe, wanted to climb one of the Saranac Lake 6, so we snowshoed up St. Regis Mountain.
Although I like St. Regis – with its marvelous views of ponds and lakes—I am not an enthusiastic snowshoer. I mean, snowshoeing is OK, but I like cross-country skiing a whole lot more.
As we walked through the woods, I kept thinking, “This would be a great ski trail.” The terrain is gentle enough that on our way off the mountain we encountered a guy in MicroSpikes running up the mountain.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released the final unit management plans (UMPs) for the Hurricane Mountain Fire Tower Historic Area and the Saint Regis Mountain Fire Tower Historic Area.
DEC will allow volunteer organizations to restore the two fire towers and reopen them to the public. » Continue Reading.
Sometimes my choice of canoe-camping adventure in the Adirondack Park is based on the lowest chance of family mutiny. My husband Jack and our three teens, Parker, Dom, and Zoe, still reeled from the memory of a 1.25-mile carry around Raquette Falls during a two-nighter down the Raquette River a year ago.
Loaded down with heavy boats and an overabundance of unorganized gear, we had grossly underestimated the portage distance and the ferocity of welt-inducing mosquitos. I was loath to ask my clan to ever portage again, but when the opportunity arose to paddle from Hoel Pond to Long Pond in the St. Regis Canoe Area, the desire to introduce my family to this eighteen-thousand-acre, motorboat-free canoeist’s Eden was too great. » Continue Reading.
The Proposed Final Drafts of the Hurricane Mountain and St. Regis Mountain Fire Tower Historic Area Unit Management Plans (UMPs) were presented by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) staff to the Adirondack Park Agency (APA) Board at their monthly meeting on February 14, 2014. Pursuant to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (SLMP) requirements for Historic Areas, the Agency will hold a public hearing on Wednesday, March 12, 2014 to solicit public comments related to the proposed UMPs’ conformity with the provisions of the SLMP.
The Hurricane Mountain Fire Tower Historic Area is located on the Summit of Hurricane Mountain in the Town of Keene, Essex County. The St. Regis Mountain Fire Tower Historic Area is located on the summit of St. Regis Mountain in the Town of Santa Clara, Franklin County. » Continue Reading.
Bluebird days make for great opportunities to photograph the striking contrast between the blue sky and snow. Typically photographing mid-day produces lack luster photographs. A polarizing filter will help cut the harshness of the light and produce a deep blue sky. Regardless of whether you are interested in photography, days such as these should be spent outside, not behind a desk.
Jessica Seem brought her two sons to the Adirondacks for vacation this summer after reading on the Internet about the Saranac Lake 6er challenge. They drove 260 miles from central Massachusetts and spent the next several days climbing six smallish mountains near the village of Saranac Lake.
Thanks to a tourism initiative begun by the village in May, hikers who climb all six peaks earn a patch and the right to ring the 6er bell at downtown’s Berkeley Green. The peaks range in height from 2,452 feet (Baker Mountain) to 3,322 feet (McKenzie Mountain). In between are Haystack, Scarface, St. Regis, and Ampersand mountains.
Seem and her sons—Elliot Walsh, ten, and Casey Seem, seven—finished their 6er round on Baker on the edge of the village. “Ampersand was my favorite,” Elliot said. “It was nice and scrambly, and the view was great.”
Younger brother Casey had been reluctant to climb all six until his mother promised him an ice-cream sundae. Asked what flavor he planned to get, he replied, “Whatever they have!”
Mayor Clyde Rabideau said he is pleased with the popularity of the 6er challenge. “It’s catching on,” he remarked. “It’s family friendly.” » Continue Reading.
Spring has decided to show up fashionably late. I woke up to snow the last couple of days, and even though it’s been melted by lunch time each day, it has been discouraging to say the least. However, even with the new snow showers, it is clear that winter is gone, even if spring hasn’t set in completely yet.
Pico and I went hiking the other day up St. Regis Mountain. It was a crisp morning, but with clear skies forecasted all day, it seemed like a great opportunity to hike one of my old favorites before the bugs are out in any sort of force. We set off and wandered through the woods down behind Paul Smiths and up the mountain. » Continue Reading.
Well, the world didn’t end, so we got that going for us, which is nice. In fact, on the official first day of winter, we finally started getting some snow. It rained all day, then switched to the very fine snow that blows around and looks like it’s snowing like crazy. I woke up hoping to go skiing, but there’s still only an inch or so of snow on the ground. I really want to go skiing.
The fine snow somehow makes it through the screens on my porch, coating everything out there. I always try to sweep the porch before walking on it too many times, but Pico doesn’t care if the porch is clean. He loves the snow. When I let him out, he usually stares at the screen door like it’s the biggest barrier he’s ever seen. But when we get snow, he noses open the door and takes off to prance around in the fresh white stuff. » Continue Reading.
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