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Adirondack Explorer

Archive for the ‘Outdoor Recreation’ Category

May, 2013

Bug Season: Some Tips For Avoiding Black Flies


Late May and early June is the peak of black fly season in the Adirondacks, and the intensity and aggressiveness of the swarms of these small, dark-colored biting bugs varies greatly from one location to another and from one year to the next. From all indications, this year seems to be one in which there is a definite abundance of black flies in our forests, much to the delight of numerous species of insect eating birds that migrate north to feast on the seasonal abundance of bugs, but much to the dismay of hikers, campers and canoeists that want a >>More


May, 2013

A Proposal for the High Peaks Wilderness


Last week I set the table for a discussion on how better to manage and protect the High Peaks Wilderness, the centerpiece of the Adirondack Park.  My Dispatch offered no specifics; instead I asked readers for comments and ideas.  I got many good ones.  I paid attention to all of them and was influenced or informed by several.  Now it’s time to show my cards. Allow me to preface my remarks by saying that while I think everyone who loves the park has a stake in the fate of the High Peaks area, I claim no definitive knowledge of what >>More


May, 2013

Finch Hearings To Start June 12


The Adirondack Park Agency will kick off on June 12 a series of public hearings on the use and management of 22,500 acres of new state land, including the Essex Chain Lakes and parts of the Hudson River. After the hearings, the APA will decide how to classify the lands—a decision that will affect how people can recreate and how accessible the lands will be. The state recently bought the former Finch, Pruyn timberlands from the Nature Conservancy. Much of the debate is likely to be over motorized use. Sportsmen and local officials want the public to be able to >>More


May, 2013

DEC Planning Expanding Access to Sacandaga Easements


The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is preparing a recreation management plan (RMP) for the 3,200-acre Sacandaga West Conservation Easement lands in Fulton County. Public involvement is sought in the development of the recreation management plan. DEC is seeking information and ideas that will lead to clearly stated goals and objectives for the care and stewardship of these lands. Everyone with an interest in the area is encouraged to participate in the planning process by providing information and suggestions for its management. The Sacandaga West Conservation Easement lands consist of six separate tracts in close proximity in >>More


May, 2013

State Run Adirondack Ski Areas Rebound in 2012-13


According to preliminary data for this year released by the National Ski Areas Association, ski resorts reported an 11% increase in visitation nationally, with a 20% increase in skier visits in the Northeast region this year, after a disappointing 2011-12 winter. Not surprisingly given the reduced snowfall last year, results at Gore and Whiteface, both operated by the Olympic Region Development Authority (ORDA), improved significantly for the 2012-13 season. According to Jon Lundin, ORDA’s Public Relations Coordinator, Whiteface logged 195 thousand skier visits for the 2012-13 ski season versus 165 thousand the year before. At Gore, there were 197 thousand >>More


May, 2013

The New Canoe Trip On The Upper Hudson River


Joe Martens may be the head of the state Department of Environmental Conservation, but he is no different from a lot of paddlers: he couldn’t wait to canoe a stretch of the upper Hudson River recently added to the Forest Preserve. On Tuesday, Martens and Mike Carr, executive director of the Adirondack Nature Conservancy, led a flotilla of canoes on an all-day trip down the river, giving us a preview of an excursion that will soon be open to the public, perhaps in a few weeks. “This is great; it’s beautiful,” Martens remarked halfway through the trip. “Maybe I appreciate >>More


May, 2013

Adirondack Paddlefest in Old Forge This Weekend


After a week of frost warnings and even snow flurries, the weekend temperatures are due to ease into the sixties and just in time for the Adirondack Paddlefest. In its 15th year, the Adirondack Paddlefest will host paddling presentations, test paddles, on-water canoe and kayak sales, demos, clinics, food and entertainment this Friday – Sunday, May 17-19 in Old Forge. According to Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company Store Manager Will Crimmins, the Adirondack Paddlefest attracts seasoned veterans as well as paddling newcomers to the Old Forge area.  Held at the Old Forge Public Beach, behind the Visitors’ Center, the weekend event >>More


May, 2013

On Horseback: Otter Creek Horse Trails Ready For Season


Horseback trail riders are gearing-up for another season exploring the Otter Creek Horse Trails located just outside Lowville (DEC Region 6) on both the Independence River Wild Forest Unit of the Adirondack Forest Preserve and on the Independence River and Otter Creek State Forests on the western border of the Adirondack Park in Lewis County.  A group of volunteers are working to distribute maps of the area, and the water will be turned on at the Assembly Area, located in the Independence River State Forest, on May 15th according to DEC. The water is shut off the day after Columbus Day. >>More


May, 2013

Ethan Rouen: Paddling Lows Lake


Sitting in a canoe surrounded by nine miles of water always feels dramatic, but sharing those nine miles with no one but your paddling partner and the occasional loon is transcendent. It was 7:30 on a weeknight, and my wife, Kim, and I had been paddling from the Bog River through Lows Lake for almost eight hours. Moments before, I was a bit panicked. We (okay, I) had lost our map several miles back, and the campsite where we had planned to pitch our tent for two nights wasn’t where we thought it was. We paddled out of an inlet >>More


May, 2013

Lost Brook Dispatches: Wilderness in the High Peaks?


This week I am getting my mountain fix in the Pacific Northwest, where Amy and I are attending a school in wilderness woodcraft.  That circumstance will make this week’s Dispatch mercifully short.  It will have to serve as a prelude to a more substantial missive I have been working on for a few weeks, one  which will offer suggestions – some of them certain to provoke disagreement – for improving the wilderness experience in the High Peaks, better protecting the Forest Preserve in general and sensitive high mountain terrain in particular. Regular readers know that I am a proponent of >>More