About Tracy Ormsbee

Tracy Ormsbee is publisher of the Adirondack Explorer. When she’s not working – and it’s not black fly season – you can find her outdoors hiking, running, paddle boarding or reading a book on an Adirondack chair somewhere.

Reader Interactions


  1. Justin says

    Fantastic article! I ran into Sam while hiking the Cranberry 50 earlier in September. I had the awesome idea to hike from Olmstead Pond to Sand Lake, made it as far as Big Shallow. Still motivated to visit Sand Lake, maybe next year! Thank you Sam for all that you do for the trails!!

  2. William Lundy says

    Good morning, Thank you for this article featuring one of the hardest-working people I know. May I note one clarification, though: although most stewardship projects run by the 46ers have membership as a requirement, the one exception is trail work. Anyone (18 or older) can join a trail work session: being a 46er is not a requirement for this particular activity. So, anyone interested to join Sam and the other 46er trail workers can go to the 46ers website (http://www.adk46er.org/) and sign up for the trail crew on line. Thanks for this.
    Bill Lundy, 46R#3310, Recording Secretary

  3. John Sasso says

    Great article on our trail master, Sam! One correction to the article, though. The statement,

    “To volunteer with the Adirondack 46ers, you have to have hiked all of the 46 Adirondack peaks over 4,000 feet”

    is incorrect. You can be a 46er or an aspirant to volunteer. We have had a number of the latter in our trail crew. See:

    To volunteer as a trailhead steward in the Trailhead Steward Program (also conducted by the 46ers), you do need to be a 46er.

  4. John W Blaser says

    I adopted the Shallows, Wolf and Sand back in the 80s, but had to give them up because of family and job obligations. It’s nice to know how well the leantos in the Five Ponds Wilderness are cared for.

  5. Rob Abromavage says

    It is clear from the article how Sam got his trail-name… “Sammy the Bull.” A plea from his Grand Canyon hiking buddies… Free him so he can go on more of our trips. All trail work and no Canyon trips could lead to Sam becoming a dull boy!

  6. William Ott says

    Love your article Tracy,

    I assume the plane wreck is the F-106 by Wolf Pond, where somebody vandalized the tail piece (tail number 078) soon after I noted how to find it in the Wolf Pond shelter log. The other wreck I know about in the area is Wilbur Weyland’s Piper Cub (or Taylorcraft) where he crashed and died in 1954, not to be found until 1979. That one is harder to find as nothing is above ground any more.

  7. Marty Hogan says

    This is an amazing story thank you so much. I have not hiked the 1 mile between rock lake outlet and the leanto at Sand Lake. I’ve tried three times but hiked the entire length from Croghan Road to Wanakena in other hikes It’s great to see this being taken care of with such kindness.

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