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Adirondack Explorer

July, 2014

The world according to Bill
Author: by William C. Frenette

Review by: by Neal Burdick

Lifelong Tupper Laker Bill Frenette embodied the word “active.” Here are some highlights (you might want to go get a sandwich or something; this may take a while): He was a founder and leader of the ski patrol at the Big Tupper Ski Area, whose trails he helped design. He served as president of the Adirondack Forty-Sixers. He once guided Robert F. Kennedy and his family through the Hudson Gorge. He climbed in South Africa and Bavaria, surfed in Hawaii, bicycled in Newfoundland, rafted the Grand Canyon, skied in the Italian Alps, and swam the fjords of Norway. Since all >>More


May, 2014

You can go home again
Author: Bernd Heinrich

Review by: Ed Kanze

MY FIRST MEETING with the nature writer Bernd Heinrich came on a dark, stormy night at the Saranac Lake Free Library. He was reading from a book then in progress, The Snoring Bird, which combines a biography of the author’s entomologist father with Bernd Heinrich’s own life story. Anyone who had the privilege of being in attendance that night will remember the tumultuous weather outside, the gasps for breath, and the tears that ran in rivulets down Heinrich’s face as he spoke about his relationship with a brilliant but ruthless father. The audience glimpsed the intensity and passion that drive >>More


May, 2014

A picturesque past
Author: Neil Surprenant

Review by: Kirk Peterson

  IT HAS BEEN SAID that we are all residents of the same country called the past. No place values its past more than Saranac Lake, and Arcadia Publishing’s Images of America: Saranac Lake will be warmly welcomed here. Authored by Neil Surprenant, director of the Joan Weill Adirondack Library at Paul Smith’s College, and drawing on several hundred photos from the Adirondack Room of the Saranac Lake Free Library, the book brings our old community back to life. The book is organized into thematic chapters picturing the village in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. “Making a Living,” the first >>More


May, 2014

A reputation rescued
Author: Herbert C. Hallas

Review by: Phillip Terrie

BORN IN MALONE in 1819, William Almon Wheeler spent his early years in relative comfort. That ended precipitously when his father died at the age of thirty-seven, leaving scant resources to his wife and children; William was six months short of his tenth birthday. His determined and indefatigable mother, Eliza, kept her family together, provided William a loving and supporting environment, and made sure that he was educated. He was a regular at the Malone Congregational Church, and he picked up a little cash by doing odd jobs for neighbors. With perseverance, native intelligence, and his mother’s work ethic, William >>More


March, 2014

Never a Dull Moment
Author: Daniel Way, M.D.

Review by: Neal Burdick

DANIEL WAY comes by his predilection for photography naturally, or perhaps one should say genetically—he is the great-great-nephew of Seneca Ray Stoddard, pioneering photographer of the post-Civil War Adirondacks. The Glens Falls native’s love of the Adirondacks and all that there is about them may also come down from Stoddard, one of the few to whom the Adirondack Park owes its existence, thanks to his presentation of his work to the State Assembly in 1892. Way is also a medical doctor, practicing rural primary care for more than thirty years with the Hudson Headwaters Health Network. Through his work he >>More


March, 2014

When Men and Mountains Meet
Author: Glenn L. Pearsall

Review by: Philip Terrie

GLENN PEARSALL has combed through long shelves of published works about early development efforts north of the Mohawk. The result is a thought-provoking book about selected (on what basis is never clearly explained) episodes in North Country history, covering the years roughly between the end of the American Revolution and 1820. The stories he tells are presented vigorously and convincingly, with deft deployment of telling detail and dramatic anecdote. Although there is much to admire in When Men and Mountains Meet, there also are problems, most of which are the typical but by no means inevitable consequence of unedited self-publishing. >>More


January, 2014

New York Wildlife Viewing Guide
Author: Published by Adventure Publications

Review by: Ed Kanze

SEEING WILD ANIMALS has never been easier. All you have to do these days is flop onto a couch, hit a button, and the glittering pixels of a digital television bring you images of almost any creature you like. You see it eating, sleeping, birthing, mating, dying, the works. Still, let’s get real. Ogling virtual wildlife on TV isn’t half as satisfying as finding the real thing in the wild. Where to go looking? Ah, that’s often the question. How to find animals to watch when you get there? That’s a perennial puzzle, too. The new glossy New York Wildlife >>More


January, 2014

Good Ol’ Fish Creek
Author: Good Ol' Fish Creek by Edward W. Larkin Jr.

Review by: Neal Burdick

CAR CAMPING is an Adirondack tradition with a long history, but not much has been written about it in comparison with the verbiage on canoeing, climbing, hunting, and so on. That gap has been narrowed with the arrival of Good Ol’ Fish Creek, Edward Larkin Jr.’s recollections of fifty-eight consecutive summers of camping at the popular state campground of that name in the Saranac Lake headwaters region. This is a love song to a venerated annual fortnight, a time-honored way of spending that interlude, and a place he calls his Shangri-La. In this thin, exuberant volume we gain insight into >>More


November, 2013

Photographing the Adirondacks: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to Take Them
Author: Carl Heilman II

Review by: Kenneth Aaron

Camera-ready scenery. IF YOU’RE A PHOTOGRAPHER looking for a shooter to emulate, Carl Heilman II is a fine choice. After all, Heilman has been creating iconic Adirondack images for decades, and he knows the hidden (and not-so-hidden) parts of the Adirondack Park as well as anybody. In his new book, Photographing the Adirondacks: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to Take Them, Heilman gives you a map—literally—that will show you the way to many of the scenes that he’s built a career on. The 112-page book is broken into eight regions, covering sixty-four locations throughout the Adirondacks. Some of >>More


November, 2013

E-Book: Photographing the Adirondacks: Fall in the High Peaks Region
Author: Chris Tennant & Adam Baker

Review by: Kenneth Aaron

A photo app for autumn. You never know just how good leaf-peeping season will be. That’s OK—you can always get a dose of spectacular color in Chris Tennant and Adam Baker’s new e-book, Photographing the Adirondacks: Fall in the High Peaks Region. The 104-page PDF is available as a $7 download from www.adkbook.com. Unlike Carl Heilman’s book, Tennant and Baker’s book focuses on just one part of the Adirondacks, picking twenty-five locations where you might find great shooting. (Tennant included some of these tips and photos in an article about the Adirondacks in the October issue of Popular Photography.) Tennant >>More