Writer/photographer Bill Ingersoll shares a memorable experience from a snowshoe hike on New Years Day 2009.
Part 3 of 3 Automobiles enabled a new generation of suburbanites from the Mohawk and Hudson valley regions to begin visiting the mountains more frequently. Some of these people acquired rustic cabins built by the early homesteaders and converted them into camps. Paul Schaefer, a contractor from Schenectady, was one such person.
Part 2 of 3 Locals regarded Crane and Huckleberry mountains as places to pick berries—specifically blackberries, raspberries, and huckleberries (blueberries)—as well as a source of paint pigment and other minerals. Outsiders, however, viewed the mountain in terms of its recreational potential.
The Forest Preserve has been and will continue to be the best tool we have in the Adirondacks to keep land – and the community of life it supports – in a “forever wild” state. Now is not the time to lose faith, nor to indulge in the conceit that nature is static and can be kept unchanged under a glass bubble. The Follensby Pond Tract needs to be added to the cultural and natural heritage we call the Forest Preserve, and the public needs to be invested in its future.
If there is one time of the year that I wish would last much longer, it’s the period from mid-September through mid-October. The lack of bugs, the cool days and cooler nights, the brilliant sunshine and the crisp moonlit forests — these are all the things that form the roots of life’s deepest pleasures.
What made these new lands different from most others, though, was undoubtedly the fact they were already occupied by hundreds of hunting camps. This was not simply opening up vast acreages of forest that had been previously denied to the public-at-large, but driving out the leaseholders who were already there. One can rightly argue that as public lands they will serve more people and provide all sorts of wilderness-based benefits, but I’m sure it still stings for the minority who find themselves at the losing end of the equation.
The Adirondack legacy of former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is more than just a land acquisition and a failed snowmobile master plan. The one project that can be fully attributed to Cuomo involved a mine, a protected wilderness, and a highly controversial amendment to the state’s constitution that allowed one to gain access to the other.
The preferred method for preserving the “Cotton Lake Wilderness” as a state-recognized wilderness is to remove the quotation marks – for the APA board to take definitive action and reclassify the land per the procedures set in place by the SLMP. Doing so would elevate Cotton Lake to equal status with the nearby West Canada Lake and Ha-de-ron-dah areas.
As he ate the moose slowly moved toward shore, unperturbed by his mucky environment, his ears occasionally flicking away a nuisance fly. From what I could make out through the camera’s viewfinder his bulbous nose spent much time in the water. Then he would lift his head up, displaying his broad rack like hands splayed in supplication. They looked ponderous, an evolutionary over-indulgence, even if I already knew that evolution had produced much larger racks on other cervids lost to extinction.
The Cataract Club was not a formal organization with charter members and bylaws. There was no tar-paper cabin standing on a paper company lease. The camp was a surplus Army squad tent erected each season on the same campsite located high in a valley on the back side of Eleventh Mountain.