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  • Hikers will be bused to Wilmington

    This is mind-boggling and borders on the absurd. This is their best attempt at a shuttle service? First off, this tells me there will be no attempt ever to do anything along Rte 73. Secondly, it calls into question if anybody knows what they are doing. Who in the world would voluntarily take a shuttle to Bear Den Mountain? That trailhead is at the Whiteface Ski Center and there are HUNDREDS of parking spots. Hundreds. There is no reason to wait for a shuttle at the beginning or end of your hike when the trailhead is so easily accessible. And a stop at Copperas Pond? OK... nice place but why would I take a shuttle there? And I assume when they say Whiteface Landing they mean Connery Pond? So the plan is to drop Lake Placid tourists who don't know any better off at the hardest approach to Whiteface? Maybe I'm being too harsh here but this whole idea is just ludicrous. And none of this does anything to decrease demand for the High Peaks or other mountains along Route 73. Creating a shuttle to Bear Den Mountain doesn't make a hike of Sawteeth any less desirable, does it?

    https://www.adirondackdailyenterpris...to-wilmington/
    Last edited by Makwa; 09-06-2019, 03:01 PM.


  • #2
    IDK. Maybe it will shift some load off of Cascade. If I was a tourist or business traveller (are there any of those in LP?) staying in a Lake Placid hotel, inquired at the front desk of where to go for a hike, and was told to simply catch the free shuttle across the street to Bear Den... I probably would go for it.

    Definitely agree though that this service is not meant for the High Peaks hiking enthusiast! Sure would be nice to have a 16-hour a day shuttle service that ran the full loop around the HP region hitting all the trailheads... now that, I would take advantage of.

    Comment


    • #3
      I was under the impression that one function of the press was to bring clarity to a situation.

      This website does a better job then the adirondack daily enterprise

      https://www.roostadk.com/new-hiker-s...-region-trails

      Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
      ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        Clicking on the bottom of the link above brings you to a better link:

        https://www.lakeplacid.com/hiker-shu...c-e0a9aa179b84

        Shuttle map - I need a map. I can not do things without a map.

        https://www.lakeplacid.com/f/page/39...uttle-map2.pdf
        Last edited by Bunchberry; 09-07-2019, 07:35 AM. Reason: added map link
        Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
        ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

        Comment


        • #5
          Whiteface landing DEC hike map:

          https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/lands_fo...hitefaceml.pdf
          Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
          ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

          Comment


          • #6
            Copperas ponds are on the Sentinel DEC map:

            https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/lands_fo...apsentinel.pdf
            Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
            ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              As Makwa rightly analyzes, this shuttle plan is pointless regarding hiker traffic. Why would this shuttle get set up? Answer - follow the money. This is nothing more than a tourist promotion exercise to bus crowds from LP to tourist destinations and events at Whiteface. The stops at Connery and Copperas are for show.

              So it won't accomplish any of what it claims, but at least it probably won't do any harm, unlike Albany's other interventions. And if Essex County wants to spend this money to help promote Whiteface events, that's fine. (Do note that this is being paid for locally, by Essex County (my taxes); not a penny from the state, despite Seggos's blather.)

              The most amazing statement in the article, just jaw-droppingly absurd, is "...the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s ongoing, comprehensive efforts to promote sustainable tourism in the High Peaks region and protect this irreplaceable resource." What ongoing comprehensive effort might that be? The state's entire effort here has been a comedy of errors.

              Comment


              • #8
                Bear den trail map

                https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/lands_fo...beardenmtn.pdf
                Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
                ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

                Comment


                • Makwa
                  Makwa commented
                  Editing a comment
                  What that map does not show is the other trails and herdpaths branching off from the Bear Den Trail. It is not the best marked trail out there and very easy to venture off in the wrong direction if you are not paying close attention. It's a nice little hike and well worth your time. You're looking at 45-75 minutes in each direction depending on your pace. It's pretty easy and has a lovely view. But as noted above... very easy to drive to the huge parking area yourself.

              • #9
                The best information on Stag Brook falls - No map makes Bunchberry nervous

                https://seeswim.com/location/stag-brook-falls/
                Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
                ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

                Comment


                • AvalanchePass
                  AvalanchePass commented
                  Editing a comment

                • Makwa
                  Makwa commented
                  Editing a comment
                  My description of Stag Brook Falls from a trip report in early July of this year... "Once you reach the building at the end of the ski center entrance road bear to your left and start looking for signs. You'll see one with an arrow that points to the register at the edge of the woods where the trail starts. "Register" is being extremely kind. It's an empty box. Once in the woods you walk northwest along Stag Brook and parallel to the ski lifts on a red-marked trail. Or was it arrows? Or blue discs with a shoe icon? Or was it totally unmarked, unmaintained, and mostly a bushwhack? It was actually all of those things. I only saw like a handful of trail markers the entire way and they all were different and not at all helpful. There was kinda sorta a trail. Half felt herpathy and the other half was bushwhacky with the brook being a huge handrail to follow. I got through it just fine but I just wouldn't go dragging grandma up the hill. Anyway, Stag Brook Falls is reached quickly. And it's beautiful. Forty feet tall and you can get within spitting distance of the base of the falls where the mist from the water splashing on the rocks cools you off. Very neat set of falls. But be careful with the last hundred feet or so getting there. Every wooden plank on the tiny bridging in the area is broken. Footing was precarious at best."

                  Another link with a trail description... https://digthefalls.com/stag-brook-f...v=7516fd43adaa

                  This is a 15-minute hike in each direction if you are moving slowly. It's possible you will wait for the shuttle longer at each end of your visit than the hike is. I would recommend adding Block Cascade to your visit to make it worth your while. You just continue following Stag Brook past Stag Brook Falls until you reach a series of small waterfalls and cascades. The "trail" eventually peters out near the top of the cascades.

                  Block Cascade description... https://digthefalls.com/block-cascad...v=7516fd43adaa

                • AvalanchePass
                  AvalanchePass commented
                  Editing a comment
                  We're going to do this with some "non-hiker" friends so I mapped it out to get an idea of elevation gain:
                  https://ridewithgps.com/routes/31081375

              • #10
                Interestingly, I just saw the ROOST (local tourism office) email regarding this shuttle. It confirms that the shuttle is just a tourist promotion. (Which again is OK with me.)

                The email is worded clearly to offer tourists a nice day out, with a ride to mellow hiking destinations. There's not a single word in the email about "taking pressure off the high peaks" or anything of the sort.

                All that talk in the press and from DEC is just window dressing added after the fact to support a narrative. (Kind of like OSI's press release about Upper Works a few weeks ago; same deal. Do what you want to do for your own purposes, and then throw some "taking pressure off the high peaks" decoration on it, to appeal to the currently popular narrative.)

                Comment


                • Makwa
                  Makwa commented
                  Editing a comment
                  So it took all of a few hours to see through this charade. I do agree though... fine as a tourist promotion. But if they want it to be a tourist thing they need to add more shuttle stops. There's a lot of great stuff in that stretch of highway... Monument Falls, High Falls Gorge, Wilmington Notch Falls, and the Wilmington Flume are all worth a visit too. Very easy to do all of them in your vehicle but if you're gonna have a tourist shuttle then I say stop at all the touristy places.

                • Orono Stewie
                  Orono Stewie commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Obviously aimed at boosting tourism at Whiteface and Wilmington. It may appeal to the crowd that does the store crawl in LP. Certainly not aimed at the hard core crowd that patronizes this particular palace of culture! It might well make more sense than a trek up Cascade for the leafers. FWIW, as Volunteer Trailhead Stewards in mid-July on a very warm day, our group welcomed and attempted to educate nearly 500 and about 15 dogs on Friday and Saturday in all states of (un)preparedness. Parking lots were full by 8 AM on Saturday and legal roadside spaces were busy.
                  Last edited by Orono Stewie; 09-07-2019, 11:18 AM.

              • #11
                Here is the article that explains everything... https://www.adirondackdailyenterpris...to-wilmington/


                Comment


                • tcd
                  tcd commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Excellent info. Confirms what I said at first: "Follow the money."

                • Hear the Footsteps
                  Hear the Footsteps commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Just curious, how did the Mt Van - Cascade Mt Shuttle get funded? Did the Olympic Authority underwrite it? I have to think it will it will run again this Columbus Day weekend.

              • #12
                Thanks for the map postings. Assuming this shuttle schedule is compatible, I have a new hiking route of Whiteface I want to try... park at Connery Pond, hike Whiteface, and descend to the Bear Den trailhead. Shuttle back to the car. Maybe it is good for something!

                Comment


                • #13
                  From the Albany Times Union...
                  Free shuttle bus system to run through Adirondack High Peaks

                  WILMINGTON — A free shuttle bus service designed to relieve traffic congestion in the Adirondack High Peaks region will start running this fall.
                  The Adirondack Daily Enterprise reports state and local officials announced the new system Thursday. It will be funded by Essex County.
                  Officials say they hope the service will encourage hikers to explore different trails outside of the Route 73 corridor.
                  The state’s Department of Environmental Conservation’s commissioner, Basil Seggos, says the program is part of an ongoing effort to “promote sustainable tourism in the High Peaks region.”
                  The shuttles will operate between Lake Placid, the Whiteface Mountain Ski Center and the Whiteface Landing, Copperas Pond and Bear Den trailheads from Sept. 13 to Oct.
                  6.
                  The service also will run during Columbus Day weekend from Oct. 11 to 14.

                  Comment


                  • #14
                    While it is good news that someone is trying to do something about the parking situation, the areas to be served by the bus are not experiencing parking issues. This bus will service Lake Placid and the Wilmington areas. The parking at the trailheads in these areas is not problematic. The Route 86 corridor is not overcrowded with hikers. Everyone knows the parking problems are along the Route 73 corridor, an area that will not be serviced by this new bus. I hate to beat a dead horse but it was the State posted miles of Rt 73 with no parking signs. It was the State that painted parking spots near Chapel Pond eliminating some parking spots. And the State is well aware that the Garden parking lot is closed this season. So what do we end up with, a shuttle bus to Wilmington. And when does it start?, after Labor Day, when the hiking pressure starts subsiding. Government at its finest...Too little, too late, and not where it's needed.

                    Comment


                    • #15
                      it is getting real easy to jump all over anything the state does but i will focus on this:

                      "The results of the pilot shuttle will inform our collective efforts to further expand a shuttle system in the future."

                      the proposed solution doesn't do much of anything for the 73 corridor but i do see value in it from a data gathering perspective. bus space needed, frequency, ideal number of stops, costs, safety, etc. are factors that could be determined from this sort of effort and then scaled up to the 73 corridor - all while promoting their tourism in lake placid.

                      i like the idea of testing things out in small ways before rolling them out broadly. it might be unpopular here, but that is why i kind of like the idea of limited testing a permit system too.

                      Comment


                      • Makwa
                        Makwa commented
                        Editing a comment
                        It's an established bus line that they already run in the winter. They have all those particulars worked out (stops/ costs/ safety) so I would be skeptical about this pilot program providing any new information at all. I like where your heart is though. I too have read all these articles over the past 18 months and look for some glimmer of hope that the state will do something. Unfortunately, actions speak louder than words. Nothing has been done but limit access in the area that the biggest problems are. How many more years will everybody have to wait before any action is taken? As noted in other threads on this topic this issue is not new. It has been coming for years and years, arguably two decades, and nothing has been done to improve the situation.

                      • gebby
                        gebby commented
                        Editing a comment
                        It's completely ridiculous that a "pilot study" on busing is being done, well after the draconian parking restrictions were put in place, during a year when the Garden parking lot was closed the entire summer, with limited shuttle service(i.e. not every day). New Hampshire has the very same problems and two years ago, they warned that they were going to restrict parking on 93. They did not have the shuttle system up and running until late in the year, so they held off on the parking restrictions till this year. They now have a shuttle system in place, with strictly enforced no parking on 93 and I do not read a PEEP of complaint on the New Hampshire hiking pages that I frequent. New York state has disrespected the people they encourage to come hike in the Adirondacks with their aggressive ad campaigns and embarrassed themselves in the process!(as if that could be possible)
                        Last edited by gebby; 09-09-2019, 08:14 PM.

                      • tcd
                        tcd commented
                        Editing a comment
                        gebby is right.

                        Follow the money, and the politics. Tourist money will continue to flow, and Cuomo can advertise his green bonafides to the idiot sheep that will vote for him.
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