SARANAC LAKE, N.Y. – Adirondack Wilderness Advocates (AWA) today announced that Tyler Socash, AWA member and activist, will attend the Adirondack Park Agency’s next meeting on November 16th by walking all the way from the Boreas Ponds Tract to the APA’s Ray Brook headquarters. Mr. Socash will be carrying over 1,000 letters that AWA supporters have sent to the APA in the last three weeks, calling for a full Wilderness classification for the Boreas Ponds Tract with the entire length of Gulf Brook Road closed.
“It was important to me that we show the APA in a direct way that New Yorkers are committed to preserving and protecting this amazing place,” said Socash. “How many areas in the world remain where it would be possible to walk more than twenty-five miles through protected Wilderness to attend a meeting like this, without once crossing a road? That’s the possibility our children will have if we protect the entire Boreas Tract.”
Socash will be carrying letters that AWA supporters have sent the APA since AWA began a second major letter campaign to the APA in October. The purpose of this campaign is to remind the APA Board of the overwhelming public support that exists for a Wilderness classification for the entire Boreas Ponds Tract. During the 2016 public comment period for the Boreas classification, more than 84% of public comments supported Wilderness. “We know that the Boreas classification will come to the APA Board before long,” said AWA co-founder Pete Nelson. “We want the Board to remember that broad support for Wilderness remains rock solid, even though the issue has been out of the public eye for several months. No one has forgotten the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity a full Boreas Wilderness represents.”
“The fact that our call for letters produced more than a thousand responses in just three weeks speaks volumes for the importance the public puts on this decision,” said AWA co-founder Brendan Wiltse. “We’re extremely gratified by this level of activism. We know that once Boreas does appear on the APA agenda, people are really going to be engaged.”
Socash, who grew up in Old Forge NY, fell in love with Adirondack Wilderness areas in his youth. He is used to long hikes and looks especially forward to this one. “Last year I hiked more than 7,000 miles, including both the Pacific Crest and Appalachian Trails. But nothing beats a trek through the heart of the High Peaks,” said Socash.
The Boreas Ponds Tract is a 20,758 acre property located in the towns of Newcomb and North Hudson in Essex County. The Agency Board is expected to vote soon on a classification for the tract. Their recommendation will then be submitted to Governor Andrew Cuomo for final approval.
Adirondack Wilderness Advocates, formed in 2016, is a grass-roots citizens’ organization that seeks to “promote the knowledge, enjoyment, expansion, and protection of the Adirondack Park’s wildest places.” AWA is all-volunteer and receives no funding or membership dues. More information about AWA can be found at https://www.adirondackwilderness.org/, the organization’s web site. For more information or interviews, contact AWA at firstname.lastname@example.org.