April, 2017

DEC Says Man Kept Bobcat Locked In Shed

Wildlife photographer Larry Master is writing about bobcats in the May/June issue of the Adirondack Explorer and submitted a great photo to go along with text. After reading about these beautiful creatures—the last wild felines in the Adirondacks—I was disturbed to learn that a man had been keeping a bobcat locked in a shed at his home in Jefferson County west of the Adirondack Park. The state Department of Environmental Conservation says two conservation officers, Kevin Holze and Peter Jackson, went to the home on March 29. A neighbor told them the bobcat was in a shed outside the home. >>More


October, 2015

DEC Tickets Hiker After Keg Party On Phelps

You may have seen the photos on Facebook this week of a bunch of hikers having a keg party on top of Phelps Mountain. The photos sparked a lot of comments. Many people (not all) condemned the hikers. In researching the matter for the next issue of the Adirondack Explorer, Mike Lynch discovered that the guy behind the party has been ticketed by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. Given the interest in the story, we thought we’d post it here before we go to press.   By Mike Lynch and Phil Brown A hiker who posted photos of a keg party >>More


September, 2015

Biking An Old Woods Road To Pine Pond

Last winter Carol Fox and I skied from Averyville outside Lake Placid to Oseetah Lake outside Saranac Lake, following an old woods road that constitutes part of the northern boundary of the High Peaks Wilderness. We had a great time. You will be able to read about our adventure in a forthcoming issue of the Adirondack Explorer. On Labor Day weekend I returned to the old road with my mountain bike and rode about six and a half miles to Pine Pond, a beautiful body of water with a sandy beach. As on our ski trip, I saw ample evidence >>More


April, 2015

DEC Proposes Trail, Lean-to In Pepperbox Wilderness

The 22,560-acre Pepperbox in the western Adirondacks is one of the smaller Wilderness Areas in the Park, but it also is one of the wildest. It has no lean-tos and only two miles of foot trails. The State Land Master Plan observes that the lack of a trail system “offers an opportunity to retain a portion of the Adirondack landscape in a state that even a purist might call wilderness.” Now the state Department of Environmental Conservation is proposing to create a 1.3-mile trail to Gregg Lake and build a lean-to at a primitive campsite on the lake. The trail >>More


July, 2013

Parsing The Options For The Finch, Pruyn Lands

In an article in the July/August issue of the Adirondack Explorer, I examine the various options for classifying the former Finch, Pruyn lands acquired by the state from the Nature Conservancy. You can read the article here, but it also helps to peruse the table and maps included with the story. That’s what this post is for. The above  table, designed by Jason Smith, shows at a glance how the seven options compare with respect to recreational uses and access. As you can see, the most restrictive options are Wilderness 1B and Primitive. Canoeists would face a portage of about one >>More


May, 2013

Upper Washbowl reopened to climbers

Rock climbers will have a few more routes to climb this weekend, according to Joe Racette, a biologist for the state Department of Environmental Conservation who monitors the nesting of peregrine falcons on cliffs. Racette said the Upper Washbowl cliffs near Chapel Pond are now open to climbers. DEC closes Upper Washbowl and Lower Washbowl each spring at the start of the falcons’ breeding season. DEC has ascertained that that this year the falcons are nesting on Lower Washbowl. Upper Washbowl has twenty-one climbing routes, including one established by Fritz Weissner, one of the top climbers of his era, in >>More


April, 2013

Rock-climbing routes closed to protect falcons

A sure sign of spring is when the state Department of Environmental Conservation closes rock-climbing routes in the Adirondacks to protect the nesting sites of peregrine falcons. Each spring, DEC bans climbing on routes on Poke-o-Moonshine Mountain, Upper and Lower Washbowl Cliffs, and Moss Cliff. Once biologists ascertain where falcons are nesting, some routes are reopened. Sometime in summer, after the falcons fledge, all routes are reopened. Following is a notice sent out today by Joe Racette, a DEC wildlife ecologist:   Effective today, April 1, 2013, the following Adirondack rock climbing routes are closed to protect Peregrine falcon nest >>More


March, 2013

No charges for snowmobiler whose sled sank in lake

A snowmobile that sank in Lake Flower after its driver intentionally drove it over open water has been removed and apparently did not contaminate the water, according to a spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Conservation. David Winchell, the spokesman, said the snowmobile was pulled out of the lake Friday evening, hours after the incident. “Examination of the snowmobile indicates all motor fluids are intact, so no fluids were released into the lake,” Winchell said in an e-mail. He added that DEC will not issue any tickets to the driver, whom he identified as Shawn Wales, 37, of Saranac >>More


January, 2013

Rescue report for August and September

Following is the state Department of Environmental Conservation Region 5’s report of searches and rescues from August and September. Region 5 includes the eastern two-thirds of the Adirondack Park. Essex County Town of North Elba, High Peaks Wilderness Area On Tuesday, August 14, 2012, at approximately 9:53 p.m., DEC Dispatch in Ray Brook received a call from a hiker at Adirondack Mountain Club*s Adirondack Loj reporting that his hiking partner had gotten ahead of him after the bridge over Marcy Brook. When the hiker arrived at the trailhead he could not locate Ja.m.es Mateyka, 43, of Rochester, NY anywhere in >>More


September, 2012

DEC: We had to kill moose

State officials felt they had no choice but to kill an injured moose that had been hanging out in the Ausable River in Wilmington Notch, according to David Winchell, a spokesman for the Department of Environmental Conservation. “The primary factor was its deteriorating condition,” Winchell said this morning. “It was not able to move out of there on its own, and the likely outcome would have been its death anyway.” The bull moose showed up last weekend in a steep ravine on the West Branch of the Ausable. Over the next several days, motorists would stop to gawk at the >>More


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