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Adirondack Explorer

January, 2010

Make Tahawus tracks wilderness

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In his article in the November/December issue of the Explorer about the prospect of a trail being constructed on the mining company NLI’s thirty-mile D&H rail spur to Tahawus, Alan Wechsler noted that if the rails are removed, the seventeen miles of so-called permanent easements and the thirteen miles of temporary easements on the Forest Preserve will be extinguished. Actually, the legal issues are much more extensive and serious, not to mention the fact that many people do not think it a good idea to have a trail that would be used by snowmobiles ending on the doorstep of the >>More


January, 2010

More housing saves communities

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Working homeowners in the Adirondacks are losing ground, and community life suffers as we go elsewhere. The recent APA farm-housing suit got me thinking: what if everyone whose principal residence is in the Adirondack Park was allowed to develop an extra residential unit on their property regardless of APA classification? A unit that couldn’t be subdivided and sold separately and that met all site-review, zoning and code requirements. Whether this unit provided rental income, farm help, or housing for family, it could add value for those who want to stay here, in communities with possibilities for the next generation. Maybe >>More


January, 2010

Thanks to the Land Savers

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I’d like to express our appreciation to the Smith and Kingsley families for their generous thoughtfulness in setting aside their parcel of land on Lake Placid (Land Savers, November/December 2009). Most people don’t have the ability to make significant donations to conservation in the Park. But we enjoy being in the woods thanks to contributions like theirs. Vincent Tauro, Liverpool


January, 2010

There’s hope for beeches

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In your article headlined “Alien bugs at our door” (November/December), the first paragraph says: “Since the 1960s, the beech-scale insect has devastated the region’s beech trees—so much so that scientists believe the species may not survive here.” I don’t know any scientist working on beech-bark disease who thinks the species won’t persist here. After all these years the area covered by beech trees is the same as it was before, but the forest structure has changed drastically. What we have ended up with is a lot of small trees and very few large, old beeches. New beeches continue to sprout >>More


January, 2010

That old broken record

The question of how much environmental protection is enough has always been a contentious one in the Adirondacks. So has the related question: Do strong environmental protections damage our economy? Most elected officials who represent us locally and in the state legislature think the Adirondacks already has too much protection, and they claim that our economy has been crippled as a result. These complaints no doubt hark back to the nineteenth century when the first game laws were enacted, and when the Forest Preserve was established to protect the state’s most important watershed. The complaints escalated into outrage in 1971, >>More