About Zachary Matson

Zachary Matson has been an environmental reporter for the Explorer since October 2021. He is focused on the many issues impacting water and the people, plants and wildlife that rely on it in the Adirondack Park. Zach worked at daily newspapers in Missouri, Arizona and New York for nearly a decade, most recently working as the education reporter for six years at the Daily Gazette in Schenectady.

Reader Interactions


  1. Steve Ackerman says

    A very interesting read and thank you for publishing it. I do think it is odd the author chose to compare rain fall in Houston Texas, a city 60 miles from the Gulf of Mexico and 50 feet above sea level in an area of very high humidity to potential rain fall on lakes in the Adirondacks. Loon Lake dam is in Chestertown which is about 890 feet above sea level and the spillway of Chazy Lake is 1540 feet above sea level and both are over 200 miles from the cold Atlantic Ocean. When the climate has changed to the point where 28” of rain can fall on Chestertown NY in 24 hours we will have a lot more to worry about then the dam spillways, the dam roads and the dam neighbors. We will be too busy building a lot of damn arks. Dam safety is nothing to poke fun at and just as we should be focusing infrastructure monies on bridges we should also be focusing that same attention on dams. Please be more realistic when making comparisons in the future.

  2. ADK Bill says

    The Damn on Roaring Brook, that Gore Mt uses for snow making must be 100-120 years old. Gore has increased the volume of water behind that damn, by 2X’s if not more over the years. I would think it needs a good inspection too.

  3. ADK Bill says

    I don’t see the old town damn for North Creek listed. It is on Roaring Brook, just a mile or so from Downtown North Creek. Gore Mt has increased the pond by 2 to 3 times the size it used to be, holding a bigger volume of water for snow making. Just an old earthen dam made around 1900 for the towns water supply. The state seems to drag its feet when dealing with its own issues!!!!

  4. Dave Hinson says

    Thank you for sharing the article highlighting the riskiest dams in the Adirondacks. Dam safety is a critical concern, and it’s important to assess and address potential risks to ensure the safety of communities and the environment.

    Dams play a crucial role in water management, providing various benefits such as flood control, water supply, and renewable energy generation. However, aging infrastructure and changing climatic conditions have raised concerns about the safety and resilience of dams.

    Identifying and assessing the riskiest dams is an essential step in prioritizing maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. It allows for a targeted approach to ensure the structural integrity and safety of these dams. Regular inspections, maintenance, and monitoring of dams are vital to detect potential issues and mitigate risks.

    In addition to addressing the risks associated with specific dams, it is also important to consider the broader context of dam safety. This includes factors such as emergency preparedness, public awareness, and community engagement. Encouraging public participation and transparency in dam safety processes can help build trust and ensure that stakeholders are well-informed about potential risks and mitigation efforts.

    Furthermore, investing in sustainable and resilient infrastructure is key to addressing the challenges posed by aging dams and changing environmental conditions. This may involve incorporating modern engineering practices, considering climate change impacts, and implementing nature-based solutions where appropriate.

    Ultimately, ensuring the safety of dams requires collaboration among various stakeholders, including dam owners, government agencies, local communities, and environmental organizations. By working together, we can strive to minimize risks, protect communities and ecosystems, and promote the long-term sustainability of our water resources.

  5. Jacoby Johnson says

    I read your article titled “A Look at the Riskiest Dams in the Adirondacks” and wanted to commend you for shedding light on an important issue related to dam safety. The risk posed by dams is a critical concern, and your article provides valuable information about the riskiest dams in the Adirondack region.

    Understanding the risks associated with dams is crucial for the safety of surrounding communities and the preservation of the environment. The Adirondack region is known for its stunning natural beauty, and it is essential to assess and mitigate potential risks to ensure the long-term well-being of both people and the ecosystem.

    By identifying the riskiest dams in the area, you contribute to raising awareness among the public and relevant stakeholders. It highlights the importance of regular inspections, proper maintenance, and proactive measures to reduce the potential hazards associated with aging dams.

    I appreciate the emphasis on collaboration and cooperation between dam owners, regulatory agencies, and the communities that may be affected. Engaging in transparent and open dialogue is essential to develop effective strategies for risk management and mitigation.

    I hope that your article prompts further discussions and actions to address the safety concerns associated with these dams. It is crucial that all stakeholders work together to prioritize dam safety and take necessary measures to prevent potential failures and their devastating consequences.

    Thank you for your commitment to informing the public about important issues related to dam safety in the Adirondack region. By highlighting these concerns, you contribute to the broader conversation around protecting our communities and preserving the natural beauty of the Adirondacks.

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