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Adirondack Council's latest press release.

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  • Adirondack Council's latest press release.

  • #2
    Is it me or does the Adirondack Council just whine and complain and the ADK and 46'ers actually DO something about it.
    Leave No Trace!


    • #3
      Maybe a series of motion sensor mines could be installed on the summit?
      Leave No Trace!


      • Hear the Footsteps
        Hear the Footsteps commented
        Editing a comment
        The ADK had had a motion sensor on the Cascade Trail located about 50 yards before you step out onto open rock.

        There are two other motion sensors I've seen. One at the gate to the Lake Road on AMR and the other at the register at the East River trailhead (to Mt Allen).

        There may also be one at the HPIC main register. Maybe someone will recall that.

      • bikerhiker
        bikerhiker commented
        Editing a comment
        we are almost certain we saw one on the truck trail from south meadows register to marcy dam a few weeks ago, i think within just a few minutes from the register. It was either that or a trail cam.

      • greatexpectations
        greatexpectations commented
        Editing a comment
        i think i actually saw 2 on a hike from the HPIC in early september - one near the register and a second about a half mile in.

    • #4
      Saw that posted over on one of the hiking Facebook groups but bit my tongue outta fear of getting banned.

      As we've discussed on here a gazillion times... Once the new trail opens and it becomes 9-10 miles round-trip to get to the summit of Cascade it will no longer see the level of visitation it currently gets. The Adirondack Council shouldn't be worried about the new trail's "limit" as the length of the trail will do all the work of keeping the masses away. It's a very simple equation... make the hike longer than most tourists and casual hikers are willing to do and they will stop going there. Problem is, they will instead go ruin another mountain... most likely Hurricane or others nearby. Perhaps Wright or Big Slide or Giant becomes the most popular 1st High Peak in the future. The demand will not dry up. It will just move elsewhere. All that is being done is shifting the "problem" to another location.

      And this quote kills their entire argument for me... “Personal and anecdotal observations suggest that some of the characteristics of wilderness set forth in the High Peaks Wilderness Area management plan have been lost due to the high number of visitors.” Personal and ancedotal?! In the same article where they declare the carrying capacity has been exceeded which should at the very least be an impersonal and scientific/objective analysis. And on a trail that is closing at some point in the near future. The "problem" has been addressed. Other than closing Cascade entirely until that new trail has opened what do they want?

      And for the last time. It is NOT an OVERUSE crisis. I hate the implication. It is a under-management and under-maintenance issue. You can't blame the hikers for using established trails.


      • #5
        I heard from a friend that had talked to ADKJack and told me that the summit stewards think visitation at Cascade Mt this year is down significantly. Maybe Jack will chime in. I usually like to see 1st hand what's being talked about here. Guess it's time to climb Cascade again.

        Just a thought. Maybe Adirondack Council is trying to push (shame) DEC to get the new trail to Cascade finished. Or maybe to finish the Mt Van trail already, so the focus can change.

        I'd been on the new trail to Mt Van and that trail is pretty nice. But it is a trail that required lots of time an labor to get it into it's current state. Last week workers were still doing detail work near the lookouts that the new trail empties onto. There were two instruction cards along the trail for additional work. One seemed to be to add a drainage, of which there are lots. Lots of stone stairs too. I thought it looked more like a trail the NY Parks and Recreation would build, especially on the ORDA property.



        • ADKJack
          ADKJack commented
          Editing a comment
          The figures I have are through July and May and June are really not good comparisons as we a only one day from 2020.
          Cascade July 2021 average count per weekend day was 106 verses July 2020 when it was as 210.

          I suspect the numbers are down as a result of people being able to travel again.
          The season end numbers are not yet available.

      • #6

        "creating unsustainable levels of damage." - What is a sustainable level of damage?

        "and diminishing water quality" - Seriously?

        "Use of the preserve has risen steadily for decades and jumped sharply in the past few years" - Not sure about the ADKs, but the spike in use in the Catskills in 2020 has gone down quite a bit.

        "We owe it to our ancestors to care for it as wisely as they did" - Like the clear cutting they did?

        "Recent surveys have shown a slow but steady overall increase in the percent vegetative cover visible in photographs. "So it's already getting better, without all the changes they are proposing.
        Tom Rankin - 5444W, etc., etc.

        Web Master - NY Forest Fire Lookout Association
        Member #0003 - ADKHP Foundation
        Volunteer - Balsam Lake Mountain
        Past President - Catskill 3500 Club
        CEO - Views And Brews


        • #7
          They lobbied successfully for the parking restrictions at AMR and Chapel Pond. Now they are complaining that more hikers are going to Cascade. What a surprise!

          They know that NO work has been done on the new Cascade trail in the last two years and only 0.8 mile of easy terrain has been completed. The new Cascade trail may need 10 years and millions of dollars to complete, if ever. They also know that DEC has done nothing to maintain the Old trail for many years, but they are not asking for maintenance. They want to restrict access to the old trail by parking, sending hikers to Loj road.

          Then what?


          • #8
            This is just the usual idiocy from these folks. It's a comical juxtaposition that on the SUNY ESF survey thread, we were just talking about advocacy groups prancing around waving the "data" from the latest "study" and that it's best to ignore them.

            People are going to keep coming. Manage it. A wise local suggested to me 30 years ago that we should harden Cascade and let the crowds go there. Many people will go on to do more hiking, but many will find the one high peak to be enough. This made sense to me, and still does.

            It would be easy and inexpensive to harden the existing trail, and it would do far less damage to the "precious wilderness" than all the years of hacking and chopping are doing creating the "new" trail. "Protecting the wilderness" is not the agenda at AC.


            • ADKJack
              ADKJack commented
              Editing a comment
              I firmly believe if we paved a trail to the summit people would still seek soft ground and continue the damage. It has become apparent with every trip up that mountain that people simply do not want to walk on rocks or even packed soil. There are now places where side trails are now three deep in parallel.
              While I do not know if it will ever get done I am wholly in favor of the new trail. Despite the added mile and a half each way it will still be the easiest peak. That is the question most commonly asked “What is the easiest?” Or “Which should I do as my first high peak”

            • tcd
              tcd commented
              Editing a comment
              Jack, I understand what you are seeing in the woods, but I disagree. The reason for "go around" trails is because our much vaunted "trail experts" do not always do good work. Sorry, but that's the case.

              I have seen good trail work, and I have done good trail work, where I come back to a trail years later and it still looks good, and everyone is staying on the trail. I have also seen all kinds of terribly done trail work, for decades. Terrible work by the 46ers, by ADK, by SCA, by DEC, by all sorts of groups branding themselves as "experts."

              When you see a bunch of "go around" trails you do not have to look very hard to find the reason for them, if you have a clear-eyed understanding of the user population. A couple examples:

              >Baxter Mountain (my home): The user population is families with small children, and local older folks (like me!). Much of the "trail work" is not suited for that population, so there are go-around trails everywhere.

              >Round Pond trail: This is from decades ago, but still applicable. There was a large wet area about 1/4 mile from the road. Some group (I don't remember which one) had placed supposed "stepping stones" across this area. But the stones were far apart; sharp upturned pointy rocks. It was straight up dangerous to try to use them. I was quite agile at the time, and I would still bushwhack around this stretch, as did everyone else.

              So the root causes of people "going around" are failure to understand the user population, and just plain lousy trail work. Do it right, so it appeals to the users, and they will use it. Remember you are selling a product here. If the customers do not like the product, it makes no sense to get mad at the customers. It may feel good, but it will not make your "business" successful.
              Last edited by tcd; 10-04-2021, 05:42 PM.

            • tgoodwin
              tgoodwin commented
              Editing a comment
              In previous comments I have agreed that fixing the existing trail would be an easier way to accomplish the goal of keeping hikers on the one designated path. As tcd points out, there are many examples of trail work that in past years was poorly done. The biggest problem that I see on the Cascade trail is stone staircases that had no hard surface below the last step. Years of descending hikers stepping off the last step has caused the soil to become compacted, which makes that first step seem somewhat daunting for those who are ascending - hence the impulse to go us beside the staircase. In many places on the Cascade trail, all that is needed is a stop or two up to the current first step plus some serious brushing or scree next to the staircase, and then hikers would start using the steps again.

              The other issue is a lack of maintenance once the trail work has been done. Two weeks ago I hiked Marcy on a Saturday. It had rained hard Thursday night, so there was much water running down the trail and pooling in the flat areas. In almost all cases, there was a failed drainage structure up higher that, had it been maintained, would have turned the water aside. The claim is that the sustainable trails under construction to Mt. Van Hoevenberg and Cascade will not need much, if any, drainage maintenance. That remains to be seen, but the cost of the nearly-finished trail to Mt. Van Hoevenberg calls into question whether over the course of 10 or 20 years the total cost of a quick fix plus annual maintenance wouldn't still be much less that the cost of the supposedly sustainable trail.

          • #9
            If you build it, they will come. If you close it, they will not come. Seems to me, that these are the two extremes to the problem. Limiting access would solve one sides problem. I’m merely playing Devils advocate, here. Shutting down the High Peaks area during certain times of the year would limit the “Overuse” problem. However, it would drive away much needed business and sour people’s attitudes. Treating the High Peaks like a true state park and bringing in more Rangers, means more money towards the problem. Some areas are seeing more stations for bathrooms, but the problems of trampling on summit plants persists. There will always be the clowns, who disregard the rules and requests of others. These are the rebels. The anarchists, who couldn’t give a hoot how anyone feels about the Adirondacks. They’re going to do what they want and you folks are just going to have to put up with it. This is where law enforcement must be strengthened. Tickets and jail time will decrease the abuse.
            A few ideas:

            1. Registering your name, each time you stay in a lean to.
            Yeah, I know, what if someone doesn’t register their name and trashes the place. This is where increased patrols could be employed. If people see more patrols in the lean to areas, they might be more inclined to carry out their garbage.

            2. Clean up crews: simple. They go in an clean up the mess.

            3. Give summit stewards the authority to issue tickets to those who damage the summits. Deputize the Stewards to keep order at the summits. Once, people know they can get a ticket that will be enforced, some of the shenanigans will end.

            These are just ideas to discuss.
            Nothing like being in the woods.



            • FlyFishingandBeer
              FlyFishingandBeer commented
              Editing a comment
              Presence patrols, LEOs stationed at summits to enforce state regs, and mandating the currently voluntary lean-to guest books. Sounds a little North Korean to me, dawg.

              Despite what's being raged about on social media and a few other publications, the "shenanigans" aren't really that common. Yes, some people walk on alpine vegetation out of ignorance, and Summit Stewards are doing a very good job handling this issue presently. Lean-tos are not typically being left trashed, illegal campfires are fairly uncommon given the number of visitors to the region, and there really isn't much trash on the trails at all. Where waste does accumulate, hikers have been great about voluntarily stopping to scoop it up out of regard for their own public land.

              Anecdotally speaking, I put in quite a few miles around the ADK this past summer and so far this Autumn, and have seen very little garbage or other evidence of backcountry and or LNT principles. Sure there have been incidences, but not that frequent at all considering how many people use these trails. I also haven't found any area to be "overcrowded" or being "overused." What I have seen a lot of is people who aren't equipped with the appropriate confidence/fitness/skill/footwear (choose any combo or all four) to ascend/descend steep terrain utilizing very non-technical hiking trails. This problem is being intensely amplified due to the fact that many of those trails were not designed properly, if at all, to begin with. For example, routes that were established in drainages rather than ridges, the lack of hardened switchbacks, and known high traffic areas that have either never been improved or have been outright abandoned by the state.

              We have to be cautious about allowing ourselves to be baited into the "we need more authority" mindset, when the largest problems we're seeing have been enabled if not directly caused by those authorities for decades.

            • Gerard01
              Gerard01 commented
              Editing a comment
              Uh, oh....looks like I’m about to become the “Infamous” legendary Gerard. So much for Devils Advocate. Back to “Solo”:hiking. Lol

            • FlyFishingandBeer
              FlyFishingandBeer commented
              Editing a comment
              Gerard01 I wouldn't worry about it. Anecdotally, some of my closest friends are people who I cannot see eye to eye with on virtually any topic, but they can rationalize their ideas in ways that illustrate that their intentions are purely benevolent.