About Tim Rowland

Tim Rowland is a columnist, author and outdoors writer living in Jay.

Reader Interactions


  1. Jesse Gigandet says

    It is concerning that all of this is being done in an effort to appease the AMR. They now pay minimal property taxes and were bailed out of near bankruptcy in the late 1970’s by the state in exchange for access to some of the most pristine hiking in the Adirondacks. For all of the trails accessed from the AMR parking lot which includes: Noonmark, Round Pond, Bear Den, Dial, Nippletop, Indian Head, Gill Brook Trail, Ladies Mile, Upper Wolfjaw, Lower Wolfjaw, Armstrong, Gothics, Pyramid and Rainbow Falls (not to mention overflow parking for Giant, Giant’s Nubble and Roaring Brook Falls) – there is still far LESS foot traffic from this parking lot than there is for the single hike of Cascade and Porter Mountain on an average day. Why was this pilot program not initiated there first?

    Because these are more difficult hikes, generally only the more experienced hikers use the trails, and from what I’ve seen are far more respectful of the “leave no trace” practices.

    I checked the public records for the last 20 years and there has NEVER been a car/pedestrian accident in this area, and VERY few automobile accident fatalities in this corridor (there was no record of any specifically related to roadside parking that I could find). Yes, the parking is a problem on busy days, but cars actually travel through these areas much slower when it’s busy, from what I’ve witnessed.

    This controversial, abrupt move could have been mitigated by first expanding the parking before enacting these new rules to help offset the impact, and try to reach some sort of compromise. But… there was an obvious “back-door” deal done with the AMR to make sure they were the ones who benefitted from this deal, rather than working with the town that will be most impacted when the hikers go elsewhere.

    Shame on the DEC for caving in to the AMR demands, and allowing them to amend to their contractual agreement with the state!

    • ADKBCSkier says

      Boom. Well said.

      This was never going to be a “pilot program” and we all knew it when Janeway started harping on the idea years ago. There’s never going to be a complete report published for public comment, or any chance of them giving up until the whole HPW is permit access.

  2. Zephyr says

    Total BS. The delineators are just dangerous. They prevent someone with a breakdown from pulling off the road. Just wait until a motorcyclist or a bicyclist runs into those things. Requiring a parking permit for someone who rides a bicycle or walks to the trailhead or gets dropped off, and the fact that locals get special access shows their true colors. They just don’t want hikers using the public easement over AMR property. I for one will not participate in this farce and will take my money elsewhere. I don’t go where I am not welcome, and that includes Keene and Keene Valley apparently.

  3. MatthewQC says

    Dear John Schuler: You need to expand your social circle beyond the suitcoats-for-dinner Ausable Club membership if you think the hikers have been clamoring for a park-wide permit system. Way to say the quiet part aloud — fewer hikers was the goal all along, not traffic safety.

  4. gebby says

    If I was a resident of KV or Keene I would be very curious in comparing the valuation of the Ausable Club versus similar properties in the area and what taxes they pay, in contrast to those properties. I bet it is not equitable and now they are engendering dislike for the local community among the hiking and tourist populations that spend money there and this is likely to effect those communities in a negative way financially! Not right!

  5. J says

    With the arrogance of these AMR folks, in 2022 we can expect a new, mandatory hiking pass in the form of a $10k check written directly to this Schuster clown

  6. hikers says

    From the story: In response to citizen questions, Smith said the state has considered lowering the speed limit, but the Department of Transportation has discouraged the practice. “The DOT says it won’t work, because people will travel at the speed the road can handle,” he said.
    Can this actually be a true statement, that the NYSDOT believes this to be a fact? If it is their thinking, we have a big problem with their competency. I know from my point of view, I always travel about 5 to 7 miles or so over the speed limit, to avoid tickets. If the limit was lowered to 40 MPH, and I still drove about 62 MPH
    that’s 22 MPH over the speed limit, and a big fine and surcharge. I would be driving about 45 MPH and I think this is a good idea (to lower the speed limit). The road topography and other factors definitely warrant this. They have a seasonal speed limit between Lake Placid and Wilmington and that works. People drive slower in the winter there. Can we hear directly from the DOT, that they think lowering the speed limit won’t help? Because I find it hard to believe that is the truth. And like I said, if it is true, there is a problem with competency. They are supposed to be the experts on this. And yes, the author of this story is a liar because the vast majority of the comments are from those NOT in favor of the reservation system. This can be proven.

  7. Zephyr says

    I find it disturbing that the DEC feels they can just foist a major change in regulations resulting in drastically reduced public access, including eliminating parking on state roadways, without any public input or notice, either to ordinary hikers, major Adirondack organizations, or local communities. Have the steel stakes been signed off on by the DOT? Do they meet DOT highway regulations for a state road? They are certainly a serious hazard for bicyclists, motorcycles, trucks, and anyone who breaks down. Where is the study indicating this will improve safety, or that there was an unusual safety problem at the location? Any casual driver of the road would say there are many other areas along Rt. 73 where the parking problem along the road is equally as bad or worse. Why was that particular spot chosen, and who made that decision? Of course, many of these questions point to the desires of the AMR to cut way down on hikers accessing the public easement. However, that is a huge question to. Where is the study indicating that there is overuse at this particular point that is worse than say the Giant Mt. trailhead or any number of other spots along 73? If I lived in Keene or Keene Valley I would be very upset that apparently the DEC and AMR can unilaterally do whatever they want to without consulting anyone who lives there.

  8. Sick and tired of BS says

    I think the Fed and/or state government should seize the AMR land by eminent domain and run it for the benefit of all residents, not just the super wealthy that have mostly inherited what they have and lord it over the rest of us….

  9. Sunrise Hiker says

    Hmm, no surprise that while the reservations are full, the hiker parking lot is nearly empty. Not even 70 groups (which is a random, limited number with no actual scientific basis) of hikers will actually use the property each day, because of no-penality-no-shows. AMR are not dummies, this is their real intention all along – first use ‘the environment’, then Covid, now overcrowding, as invented reasons for limiting public access so they don’t have to drive past hikers respectfully walking up a Public Roadway. Heck, there’s even signs that say no hiker dropoff by the golf course, yet that is a public road. The time has come for full public disclosure about the terms of the legal access New Yorkers have via the easment, and how much of a tax waiver AMR gets on their property. I hope the entire situation becomes a huge clusterfck, people get mad, and AMR has to disclose their back-door dealings which impact the public. I for one plan to take away climbers’ or other hikers’ parking spaces not in the lot, hike in early for sunrise, and hike out and then just keep on walking by when they try to stop me and ask for my permit. Are they going to physically restrain me while they call a ranger to come to give me a ticket?

    • Common sense says

      I’m in the process of planning a trip to Acadia National Park and they have a parking reservation system. It costs $30. I’m appreciative to know that after I’ve driven several hours to get there, that I’ll have a parking space. I don’t see what all the outrage is about having a parking reservation system at one location in the entire 6 million acre Adirondack Park. At least it’s free. Go online, book your spot, it’s pretty simple. Or, if you don’t like that, go to any of the many, many other trailheads that have open parking. Jeez people, there are much bigger issues in the world than parking.

  10. hikers says

    any of the many, many other trailheads that have open parking? What are you talking about? It’s the opposite of that. There is no place to Park. That’s what all of this is all about.

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