The state has yet to purchase the Essex Chain of Lakes, but two environmental organizations already have proposals to establish Wilderness Areas in the region.
This month, Protect the Adirondacks urged the state to create an Upper Hudson Wilderness Area, combining twenty thousand acres of existing Forest Preserve and nineteen thousand acres once owned by Finch, Pruyn & Company—a total of thirty-nine thousand acres.
The Adirondack Council beat Protect to the punch by two decades. In 1990, the council recommended establishing a 72,480-acre Wild Rivers Wilderness if the land became available. Spokesman John Sheehan says the council still stands behind that proposal. » Continue Reading.
Having previously shared a vision for Adirondack telecommuting, my plan this week is to describe the current state of broadband and telecommuting in the park in some detail and then point towards the future, laying out a handful of important issues related to its long-term viability.
That plan has gotten a big boost from the readers of the Almanack. A number of you wrote in to illustrate the current state of telecommuting far better than I could have, in comments written in response to last to last week’s Dispatch. They were wonderful, revealing that while telecommuting in the Adirondacks is not commonplace, there is no question that its future is already here, thanks to these pioneer Wild Workers (this label, after the suggestion of a reader, is perfect for the situation, plus it is kind of charming). Choosing to live in the Adirondacks while working elsewhere is something that is happening right now. That fact should give a big shot of optimism to those who worry about the economy of the park. » Continue Reading.
Protect the Adirondacks has released a proposal calling for the creation of a new 39,000-acre Upper Hudson River Wilderness Area. This proposed new Wilderness Area would be centered on 22 miles of the Upper Hudson River that stretches from the Town of Newcomb to North River and would include over five miles of the Cedar River and four miles of the Indian River as well as dozens of other lakes and ponds.
The new Wilderness Area would be created from roughly 19,000 acres of former Finch Paper lands to be purchased by the State of New York from The Nature Conservancy and 20,000 acres of existing Forest Preserve lands in the Hudson Gorge Primitive Area (17,000 acres) and in the Blue Mountain and Vanderwhacker Wild Forest Areas (3,000 acres). » Continue Reading.
Grab a cup of coffee kids, this one is long and important.
Imagine the following scenario.
You run a growing business in New York City, an entrepreneurial company that has an exciting new technology to improve the effectiveness of solar power generation. You have a design team working on a bet-the-business heat exchanger that uses magnetic materials to be three times as efficient as anything on the market. But a crisis has developed. Mere days away from unveiling the first prototype, the project has hit a serious roadblock. » Continue Reading.
There’s big fat flakes of snow slowing drifting down out of the sky. I just threw a few logs in the wood stove and the small waft of smoke that escaped is mixing with the aroma of the black beans I’m simmering on the stove. It’s a nice night to be out here in the cabin.
Ed’s curled up next to the computer and his tail is leisurely hitting the back of my hand. Herbie’s asleep and snoring on the foot stool near the wood stove while Pico is contentedly laying on the bed. The temperature is supposed to go up a little in the next few days, but for now, it feels like winter. If it does warm up, it will be a nice treat.
My parents came up this weekend to help stack the wood in the shed. Four cords are in there, along with the other four stacked outside under tarps. It’s nice to be all set with heat for the winter, bringing a deserved sense of satisfaction in having taken care of that one aspect. When you live in nature, like most Adirondackers, you try to control what you can, knowing that you can’t control it all. No one knows what type of winter it will be, but we can get ready the best we know how, and in the spring take pride in the fact that we made through another one. » Continue Reading.
I have been in the middle of a series of arguments for building the Adirondack economy by promoting the region as a premier wilderness destination, something it is not widely known as now. A wild Adirondack Image will resonate in a much different way than current conceptions of the region bring to mind. It will become more unique, more valuable and more appropriate for answering the large and growing national demand for wild places.
The first two strategies of my five point economic proposal argued that a wild Adirondack Image can be a powerful tool in promoting wilderness tourism and recreation. Now I will move onto three additional strategies for leveraging a wild Adirondacks
Traditionally, it is between November 4th and 18th when the peak of the rutting or breeding season for the white-tailed deer occurs in the Adirondacks. Bucks are continuously on the move during these two weeks as they attempt to locate any doe that is nearing her initial heat period.
Also, as bucks expand their search for females outside their regular area of travel, males must continue to regularly return to their home range in order to ensure that rivals do not intrude into their domain. » Continue Reading.
I take a break from economics, tourism and telecommuting this week to honor my favorite holiday, Halloween, and the fear and imagination it is meant to celebrate.
It is a crisp Adirondack morning, barely six AM and the water is glass. A dense mist hangs on the lake and the air is heavy with silence. Just a few yards into my paddle across to Osprey Island the canoe has become enveloped, leaving me to make the trip only on instinct and the experience of dozens of similar journeys. There is nothing but white to be seen, that and the slate gray surface of the water, disturbed only slightly by the ripples spreading out from the bow. » Continue Reading.
Last month I considered how a condition of inter-subjectivity might be responsible for whether and how our surroundings influence who we are and what we create. Picking up where I left off, this morning I’m turning over the question of how the lived-world draw us forth and how it is drawn into our creative process. It seems to me that the world infuses us with its own being and we, who are being given the world, interpret and draw out its edge through our own lifework before we deliver it back into community as self-expression. A tripartite process of what is given, literally what is submitted, what is received in the exchange that is soon re-visioned, re-imagined and given backas an offering.
Recently I was asked to present a talk about the life and careers of Paul Schaefer, the 20th century Adirondack conservation coalition leader. The location for my talk was Niskayuna, where beginning in the late 1920s into the early 1980s Paul built and restored hundreds of homes, including his own, out of natural, recycled materials – stone, slate and timbers from old buildings then facing the wrecking ball. The host for the lecture was the Niskayuna Town Historian, fitting because Paul was also intensely interested by American history.
A healthy collection of American Heritage can be found on the shelves of his Adirondack cabin. During my talk I mentioned that Paul and his siblings, growing up after 1910, were constantly outside, and among their outdoor pursuits were days exploring for arrowheads and other implements of the Mohawk, a member of the Great League of the Haudenosaunee. I then described the outlines of Paul’s remarkably successful career defending and extending the wilderness of the Adirondacks, from its wild rivers, to its highest peaks and the wildlife rich valleys threatened from inundation by large dams. Some of this history is found in Paul’s first book, Defending the Wilderness (1989, Syracuse University Press). » Continue Reading.
Last week I ended my Dispatch on the Adirondack economy by suggesting the outlines of a five-point economic proposal. This proposal is based upon that idea that the most valuable Adirondack asset that can be leveraged is wilderness itself.
This week I will briefly describe core of the proposal, the creation of a new Adirondack image as a mountainous wilderness area second to none. » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Almanack has recently been enlivened by a series substantive of conversations around land use in the Adirondacks. I invite anyone interested in continuing those conversations to participate in the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry’s Interdisciplinary Scholarship in Land Use and Ethics 2ndAnnual Symposium May 17–19, 2013 at the Newcomb campus. On its best day, philosophy succeeds in sending “the conversation off in new directions.”
Last week’s Dispatch provoked a healthy discussion in the comments section. The readers of the Almanack proved once again to be light years ahead of your average blog trollers by being thoughtful and respectful. My arguments about economic reality in the park and elitism in the question of land use were not met with a single angry or accusatory response, but rather thoughtful commentary. So thanks to all.
In fact, I was a little surprised to see that my economic argument was left virtually unchallenged. Instead the discussion followed the common theme over whether there is enough wilderness in the Adirondacks, but along two lines so as to apparently dismiss the claim that a local perspective is elitist. The first line was to question the value of wilderness in the first place (as I strictly defined it for the purposes of this argument). Is an area of untrammeled Adirondack wilderness really that valuable to anyone, much less someone leagues away living in Cleveland? The second line was to argue over usage, both locally and from a national perspective: who uses Adirondack wilderness and how much? » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Council, an independent advocate for the Adirondack Park founded in 1975, has issued it’s 2012 State of the Park report. “The Adirondack Park was subjected to a barrage of extreme outside influences over the past 12 months, some of which devastated small communities and public natural resources, while others brought unprecedented good news to park residents and visitors,” a Council issued press release said.
The annual State of the Park Report reviews of the actions of local, state and federal government officials that the Council believes have helped or harmed the Adirondack Park over the past year. The illustrated, 18-page review is the Council’s 27th annual State of the Park report. A copy of the report is available online. » Continue Reading.
In last week’s Dispatch I claimed that we do not have nearly enough protected wilderness in America. I promised to address counterarguments and objections this week. I would like to thank all commenters for what were on the balance quite thoughtful observations.
After reading the comments and thinking about what issues a reasonable person might raise I came up with three possible objections to my parade of numbers: » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Almanack is a public forum dedicated to promoting and discussing current events, history, arts, nature and outdoor recreation and other topics of interest to the Adirondacks and its communities
We publish commentary and opinion pieces from voluntary contributors, as well as news updates and event notices from area organizations. Contributors include veteran local writers, historians, naturalists, and outdoor enthusiasts from around the Adirondack region. The information, views and opinions expressed by these various authors are not necessarily those of the Adirondack Almanack or its publisher, the Adirondack Explorer.
General inquiries about the Adirondack Almanack should be directed to editor Melissa Hart.
To advertise on the Adirondack Almanack, or to receive information on rates and design, please click here.