The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the members of the newly launched High Peaks Strategic Planning Advisory Group are encouraging New Yorkers to share their input on the State’s efforts to help promote sustainable use in the High Peaks.
In addition, Advisory Group meeting summaries will be posted online for public review. » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Council applauded Gov. Andrew Cuomo for proposing State Budget funding that will combat climate change, protect clean water and preserve Wilderness, build more resilient trails and make the park more welcoming place for all state residents.
On top of the newly announced $3-billion Restore Mother Nature Bond Act proposal, the Governor’s plan adds another $500 million investment in clean water project funding, in addition to the $500 million previously announced for this year’s budget. » Continue Reading.
Yes, build the Hudson River bike trail from North Creek to Saratoga Springs. Build it, and they will come. They did not come for the ill-fated commuter trains, snow train, tourist trains or rail service that was going to haul millions of tons of aggregate from the Tahawus Mine in Newcomb. A groundswell of support is emerging for the transition of the dormant 55-mile-long Saratoga and North Creek Railway to the new Hudson River bike trail.
A new public trail from Saratoga Springs to North Creek would connect dozens of small communities such as Corinth, Lake Luzerne, Hadley, Stony Creek, Thurman, Athol, The Glen, Warrensburg, and Riparius among other hamlets and businesses along the rail line. Such a trail would be very popular and heavily used. As we’ve seen with the Warren County Bike Trail between Lake George and Glens Falls, businesses would gravitate to the trail. » Continue Reading.
I’ve ridden on the rail corridor between Saratoga Springs and North Creek several times over the years, including the last run to North Creek with a dome car. The scenery is beautiful, especially from the high bridge at Hadley. The views along the river are splendid. Those who have never done it by train will never know what they’re missing. I wish I could have ridden it to Tahawus.
Some argue the railroad must go because it can’t pay for itself. The reason for that is that we spent the 20th century building highways at taxpayer expense; we subsidize everything that competes with rail while still expecting it to make money. » Continue Reading.
A student at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry is conducting a capstone project about daily use of Siamese Ponds Wilderness. The research is focused on scenic quality of wilderness and wilderness use by residents and visitors.
Snowmobilers in the Adirondacks will now have access to an interactive trail map on their phone to better plan their outdoor riding adventures in one of the largest trail networks in New York State.
The new, free Adirondacks, USA snowmobile app contains information about the trails in Essex, Franklin and Hamilton counties, and nearby gas stations, stores, restaurants and lodging properties that welcome sledders. Additional trails in neighboring counties are expected to be eventually be added to provide a more comprehensive map. » Continue Reading.
Parks & Trails New York (PTNY) and the New York State Canal Corporation has announced the release of the 2019 “Bicyclists Bring Business Workshop Report.”
This report provides recommendations as to how Glens Falls and the surrounding area can use the upcoming completion of the Empire State Trail in 2020 to capitalize on the growing bicycle tourism market.
The Town of Long Lake Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department recently partnered with two media companies to promote the communities of Long Lake and Raquette Lake. The effort hopes to increase visibility, and user visitation to the Long Lake tourism website and social media outlets.
Crafting A Brand, a branding and marketing agency out of the Finger Lakes Region, produced a fall foliage promotional video for Long Lake and Raquette Lake. Crafting » Continue Reading.
The 2020 application period for the Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) Campground Ambassador program has begun.
“In 2019, its second year, DEC’s Campground Ambassador Program more than doubled its applicants and grew to offer more than 300 fun, educational, and meaningful programs at nine participating facilities,” DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said in an announcement sent to the press.
New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation (S.4416B/A.5035B) directing the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (State Parks) to develop: “a plan for a comprehensive statewide system of non-motorized multi-use trails consisting of a network of non-motorized primary corridors linked to and enhanced by regional and local non-motorized multi-use trails.”
State Parks is instructed to identify new multi-use trail opportunities “including, but not limited to, transportation (rail, canal, trolley) corridors existing, abandoned or under consideration to be abandoned; under-utilized or closed roads; utility corridors and natural corridors such as waterways and waterfronts.” » Continue Reading.
What follows is an announcement sent to the press by Adirondack Forest Preserve advocates Protect the Adirondacks:
Protect the Adirondacks supports transition of the 55-mile-long Saratoga and North Creek Railway to a new public multi-use recreation trail. Given its location, the dominant use would be as a bike and walking trail. This new public trail from Saratoga Springs to North Creek would connect dozens of small communities such as Lake Luzerne, Hadley, Stony Creek, Thurman, Riparius, The Glen, and Warrensburg, among other hamlets and businesses, along the rail line. » Continue Reading.
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos has announced a new strategic planning initiative, with a goal of sustainably managing public use in the Adirondack High Peaks.
The High Peaks Strategic Planning Advisory Group, comprised of what a DEC press announcement called “key stakeholders with expertise in local government, recreation, natural resource protection, business, tourism, and other priority areas” are expected to collaboratively provide advice on how to balance issues associated with the increased public use of the High Peaks, » Continue Reading.
Another peak hiking season has come and gone and with it another year of concern about overuse in the High Peaks. A variety of steps have been taken by the State, Essex County, The Town of Keene, environmental groups and volunteers to deal with this use, with varying degrees of effectiveness. Now it seems that the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is poised to try out a permit system in an attempt to address overuse by selectively limiting access. » Continue Reading.
Credit goes to the Department of Environmental Conservation and its Region 5 facilitators for including a “break-out” session on Permits at its late July High Peaks-Route 73 stakeholder meeting at the Keene Central School. After all, the very word “permit” has been an electrified “third rail” (hazardous, indeed) topic for years.
That was not always the case, however. In 1978, the first draft of a High Peaks Unit Management Plan included a section on “individual user controls” with eight alternatives along a spectrum ranging from mandatory registration and reservation permit systems, to no controls at all. Alternative C, reservation or permit systems, stated that “through past experience the U.S. Forest Service has found that a permit system is one of the best ways of gathering user information concerning an individual management area.”
The 1978 draft UMP went on to recommend that a “free permit system should be initiated in the eastern High Peaks with no effort to limit numbers of people using the area for at least three years. Data will be analyzed. If at some time in the future it is determined that numbers of people using the area will have to be controlled, even just for certain high use weekends, the mechanism will already be in place to do so.” » Continue Reading.
Adirondack Mountain Club (ADK) has partnered with Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company, to fund the High Peaks Information Center (HPIC) volunteer host program.
Located at one of the most popular trailheads in the Adirondack High Peaks, the HPIC is a major thoroughfare for hikers to get on the trail and begin their trek. In 2017, from the beginning of July through the end of August, there were 27, 251 registered hikers at the Heart Lake Property trailheads located at the HPIC and Adirondack Loj. ADK reports that each year around 35% of these visitors are new to the area. » Continue Reading.