About Tim Rowland

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

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Boreas says

    I hope the new owners have deep pockets and are able to get the proper permits for re-opening the mine. I also hope they have a plan for the existing and future tailings. I am glad there is at least a ray of hope for the line and Newcomb, otherwise the can is just getting kicked down the road.

  2. adkresident says

    The deal to open and run the mine has already been worked out.

    You do not spend $3,300,000 on the hope of buying the mine.

    Yea!

  3. Waldine Wade says

    It’s all very interesting for our Northcountry. I understand that titanium mining is open mining. It may get unsightly but in great demand for the new green deal plan. Keep us updated,please.

  4. TooFarGone says

    Great news. About time common sense and the greater good has a chance to prevail in the Adirondacks. Of course, DEC will lord over any permits and play the killer if possible, aided by its Green Mafia stakeholders.

      • John Blair says

        /I’m not anonymous and I’m glad that the good guys won this time. trails don’t put food on the table, Railroads do. Too bad Big Green just destroyed ANY Olympic hopes for Lake Placid in the future. Thanks for NOTHING, hikers, cyclists and snowmobilers!!!!!

        • Boreas says

          Newcomb has had the railroad passing by since WW2. Railroads only put food on the table when they are profitable. And as usual, it is often NOT the locals who see those profits. You don’t see many mansions in Newcomb.

          If the RR stays, I hope it and mine/tailings DO make a profit that enriches the local populace. But it is not a certainty.

        • Daniel Bogdan says

          Railroads don’t have to be profitable to “put food on the table” but have to be sustainable. For example the Adirondack (Scenic) Railroad can’t be profitable by law since it is a nonprofit organization. Any excess money is put back in the organization. And with the help of grants, volunteers, fund raising and donations it is sustainable (for almost 30 years). And through its existence has put “food on the table” for its many vendors and staff.

  5. Newcomb Resident says

    So is titanium going to be mined or not ? Third to last paragraph says DEC is not going to permit it. The potential for an environmental mess is not insignificant. Having said that I do sincerely hope the Wrights can bring something positive to the Newcomb area economy.

    • Onno Oerlemans says

      I’d also like to know more about the prospects for the reopening of the mine, about which this article is very ambiguous. I think what the writer here means is simply that the DEC has not (yet) issued a permit to allow for that mining, not that it has already decided that it won’t allow it. The DEC couldn’t issue that kind of decision in advance of an actual application for the permit.

  6. upstater says

    Hopefully site remediation and removal of tailings are part of the package.

    I wonder where and how ore would be concentrated? It seems to be a rather nasty process. The US imports 90% of titanium…. another outsourced industry. Glad that it isn’t being ripped up to create a new snowmobile trail.

    • KevinD says

      Perhaps, but then again what are the choices? We can mine it domestically using state of the art techniques to protect people and the environment, or we can depend on a country that is less than friendly with the US, and will not bother much with safety or environmental concerns. We need to protect the environment, but just moving the extraction of minerals, or fossil fuels for that matter out of sight can be far less “green”.

  7. Susan says

    This is great news for our national security, the local economies, and area families! The Park is about 6 million acres. We have enough room for diversity of use.

  8. Tom Reagan says

    Any possibility of continued recreational use of the railroad as it is now, during specified times/days, and commercial freight use at night or other days?T

  9. Maureen Z says

    You may want to investigate this couple… did they disclose that they were the ones that ran the former 1000 Acres Ranch Into the ground and renamed it Stony Creek Ranch? They are such phonies…

  10. C Playford says

    In a national magazine, it was mentioned that the Wrights wants to for now just haul the tailings out, used to own the Thousand Acres Ranch, and hopes to work with Revolution Rails to keep that going.
    From the sound of this article, it seems to me the OBI whom I’ve not heard of till now, wants to inflict environmental damage rather preserve it like the snowmobilers and some of the rail to trail people.
    On a separate note, while I have no problems with rail to trails, there are exceptions. One being the need to keep a continuous line from Utica to Lake Placid. Second and more importantly, as the lines were abandoned, they were supposed to be reverted to the wild! Not made into snowmobile trails…. That has to be a violation of the contracts.

  11. J van Cina says

    I do urge full research into these investors. While speeking to me of having a poker in the fire on this project they were folding badly on the aforementioned project , not a pretty sight..

  12. Robzzyzx says

    Just remember, this is the same couple that bought the old 1,000 acres ranch and rebranded as Stony Creek Ranch a few years ago with huge promises about what they were going to do including buying Hickory Hill to add that to their year round resort. It is always good to do some research about track records of former investments, promises, (success or failure to meet those promises), how it turned out, etc. before getting too excited about what the likelihood of this new venture working out will be. Note in the article: “According to court documents, Mitchell Stone Products had indicated it was considering reopening the mine for production of titanium, something the DEC says it is not permitted to do.” I would bet dollars to donuts there will NEVER be an ounce of titanium transported on this rail line in our lifetimes based on past history of this couple and ADKs, DEC, APA, Newcomb and mines current situation. Sad because Newcomb needs economic development, but this isn’t a realistic option. The environmental lawsuits that will be filed in the near future will likely tie this up forever (if they try to mine). This railroad line will NEVER be profitable. You have to have significant freight business to operate this type of rail entity and that is not possible here. This couple was big on the tourism aspect of Saratoga North Creek line when they owned the ranch and said it was a huge opportunity. It wasn’t and never will be, and they don’t own the ranch anymore. If you dig a bit you can see they didn’t own the ranch very long. Wonder why?

    • Boreas says

      My biggest concern is that even if this group DOES get all their permits and such, their pockets (capital) may not be deep enough to mine to modern standards – especially NYS standards. So will anything happen on the RR line in the next 20 years if this group runs out their cash on legal fees similar to what happened with the ACR in Tupper Lake?

  13. Molly Pritchard says

    There is gold in them there hills!

    Mining iron starting in the 1700s in “boom and bust” cycles until operations completely ceased in 1971 because iron mining activity within the U.S. became more economic farther west. There are thus are multiple records and data sets that can be used to ground-truth geophysical data (Kemp and Ruedemann, 1910; McKeown and Klemic, 1956; Buddington, 1966; Farrell, 1996; Lupulescu and Pyle, 2015). Accessory minerals containing REEs (mostly apatite but also monazite, xenotime, allanite, and other minerals) were typically left in situ or discarded in waste or tailings piles; thus, they are also a potential resource (McKeown and Klemic, 1956; Staatz et al., 1980; Valley et al., 2009, 2011; Long et al., 2010; Mariano and Mariano, 2012; Lupulescu et al., 2015, 2017; Taylor et al., 2019). Similar to other IOA deposits, heavy REE concentrations are elevated relative to light REEs, suggesting increased economic potential.

    Source USGS

  14. Molly Pritchard says

    IN the 1990s they tried to sell the whole 11,200 acres to the State but in the end in 2003 they kept the 1200 acres on which they could not get a certificate showing that they were free of environmental liability (and therefore the State could not buy it) and OSI bought 10,000 acres, selling 7,000 to the State in 2007 and selling the southerly 3,000 acres for private forestry. That 3,000 acres has an easement on it that would allow someone to mine the Cheney Pond deposit.

  15. Tom Paine says

    A typical NYS broken record. A questionable investor buys it and then no doubt the next step will be to the get the NYS taxpayer on the hook for monies to operate. Oh, for that misinformed gentleman, the Remsen to Lake Placid travel corridor plan was never to revert to “forever wild” classification.

  16. Nathan says

    My grandfather and his family lived at the mines and worked there back in the 40’s until mine closed. then moved into Newcomb since..Grandpa talked about how the run off from the mines used to change the color of the streams and seeing dead trout. I never forgot that scary thought about that. the mine has been dead for ages but still remains a nasty eye sore when you walk up to the fence and look out. The old open it has been filled with water for decades and most like poisonous with heavy metals. The entire point of the ADK is to have a forever wild, reopening a long dead, dirty mine known to have huge enviromental effluent of poison into streams. To reopen in the heart of the adirondacks and risk poisoning the boreus river and down stream, it just doesnt seem worth while.
    But as we all know the APA is corrupt, will not have public input involved , most likely bribed, kick backs and approved. they are morelikely to screw with a private homeowner that their deck is too big than dare to disapprove a true enviromental disaster.
    Tahawas mines were long closed as supposedly the iron ran out, then reopened for Ti, then that run out. so what are they really going to mine, how much will be spend to keep dangerous leech from water ways, where will that heavy metal leech be stored, disposed of? or will it be put in pit? then mine is gone, rich made richer and the cost of clean-up again footed by public taxes and a toxic land mark??

  17. Nathan says

    My grandfather and his family lived at the mines and worked there back in the 40’s until mine closed. then moved into Newcomb since..Grandpa talked about how the run off from the mines used to change the color of the streams and seeing dead trout. I never forgot that scary thought about that. the mine has been dead for ages but still remains a nasty eye sore when you walk up to the fence and look out. The old open pit has been filled with water for decades and most likely poisonous with heavy metals. The entire point of the ADK is to have a forever wild, reopening a long dead, dirty mine known to have huge enviromental effluent of poison into streams. To reopen in the heart of the adirondacks and risk poisoning the boreus river and down stream, it just doesnt seem worth while.
    But as we all know, the APA is corrupt, will not have public input involved , most likely bribed, kick backs and approved. they are more likely to screw with a private homeowner that their deck is too big than dare to disapprove a true enviromental disaster.
    Tahawas mines were long closed as supposedly the iron ran out, then reopened for Ti, then that run out. so what are they really going to mine, how much will be spent to keep dangerous leech from water ways, where will that heavy metal leech be stored, disposed of? or will it be put in pit? then mine is gone, rich made richer and the cost of clean-up again footed by public taxes and a toxic land mark??

  18. Ed Furguson says

    Here we go again with the Railway. How many times does a scenic railway have to fail before people realize it’s not sustainable? Does an active mine with enormous diesel equipment running all day and a diesel train hauling whatever out of a mine in the middle of the ADK park sound like it will ever happen? What I do know is every time I drove by The Lodge and Cafe in Newcomb, they were packed with snowmobiles happily spending their money. Are those businesses packed in the spring, summer or fall? To say snowmobiling doesn’t help the Newcomb economy is extremely naive. Would an active mine bring a few jobs? Maybe, if it ever happened, but we all know it won’t. Bottom line is Newcomb and the Adirondacks in general survive on tourism dollars. I enjoyed taking my kids on the scenic railway but reality is, a few will come once, and that’s it. It’s been proven all over the Adirondacks, more than a few times. The rail trail is already a proven success.

  19. Joan Grabe says

    Another dumb idea ! This will not be a happy group of unionized miners going off with their lunch pails. This will be a highly mechanized, low man power force that will not be an economic boon to Newcomb. And what will they do with the dangerous tailings ? Ship them out downstream or overseas to some third world country desperate for revenue ?
    Re-reading previous comments – No, the APA is not corrupt, sometimes inefficient and ineffective. Yes, New York State has standards and stringent regulations that people ignore and civic minded readers have to push back in forums like this, in lawsuits and in legislative advocacy.

  20. G.Maliszewski says

    Two phrases everyone should consider: rare earth metals and strategic national interest. As the article says, this is how this RR spur got built in the first place, a good history lesson. I am not agreeing or disagreeing with any of the previous arguments but just pointing out that larger forces than people realize may be in play here. This is why the US wanted to buy Greenland and why the US was involved in reclassifying mining in the bottom of the Pacific. If you think reopening this mine is bad for the environment, look up Pacific or ocean floor mining.
    Read the resumes of the new owners and observe current events of the world and you may see where this is heading. People don’t get this wealthy chasing after fools’ errands. I think they know something that most of us do not. Maybe there is a part of the recent federal infrastructure bill that pertains specifically to this situation? It was a bipartisan bill.

    • Bob says

      Please note above some of my original comments. You can research this couple’s recent history in Warren County as they bought 1,000 Acres Ranch at auction in November of 2015 at auction. They sold in 2019. Go read some of the reviews when they owned the ranch on TripAdvisor, or go to Warren County and look up the various suits that were filed, ask around and you will find it’s unlikely these people have the means to reopen the mine, railroad, and operate on a scale like what they claim they will do. This mine is already an environmental disaster and is closed and flooded. I believe NYS DEC has jurisdiction here (states rights) and will never give a permit. APA, NYS “forever wild” clause, and every environmental organization from Sierra Club to Nature Conservancy and lots of locals will file suits to prevent this. The tailings are what people claimed they would haul out and process. Even if that was a reasonable option operating a freight train line and supposedly a tourist line (which lost millions of Warren County taxpayers dollars in the past decades) is pure fantasy. Remsen to Lake Placid tracks will become hugely successful tourism generator and help create jobs and revenues for the region. Will likely help Tupper get a big boost to come back to life again. Even if a mine did reopen, it would be state of the art technology with few people and jobs. 20 years from now we will be reading the same cycle of nonsense again.

  21. G. Maliszewski says

    Bob,
    I am not disagreeing with the history you explained above. When they sold the ranch, did they sell it for more than they bought it for? Maybe that is their plan here, maybe they don’t really want to redevelop it but just act as a holding company.
    I also know that the rail bike company was very successful, and I base that on numerous people who loved that experience. I don’t know what their profits were but I do know it was very popular.
    As far as the mine being an environmental disaster was that documented somewhere? I know it was said above but was there an article or report saying this?

  22. Future Gucci says

    Private auction? You mean zoom meeting. Lol.smh. Gotta cool them servers doin em algorithms. Then pour some cold water on them. You know Lego x Walmart. Billy Jones, wind turbines, national grid. damn dunning Krueger effect makes sense now. Bless up
    -Frank thomas

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