Chair Archive

Chair's Report

April, 2007

Chair: Tom Ortmeyer

Where has the summer gone? Our family's "major thing" this summer was a week in Star Lake - inspired in no small part by experiences from last year's Fall Outing. We were very kayak-centric that week, and had a great time exploring the waterways in and around the Five Ponds Wilderness and Aldrich Pond Wild Forest. We were greatly impressed with the beauty of area and the variety of experiences available - the lakes, flows, and rivers all hold their special attractions.

Early in the week, Ann and I paddled in a group led by a chapter member who summers on Cranberry Lake. As we lunched on Joe Indian Island, we discussed the range of outings into the Five Ponds Wilderness, many of which would start and/or end with a boat ride across the lake. These look like attractive outings for our chapter, and they would no doubt attract interest from the area's summer residents.

Much of what we do as a chapter focuses on the outdoor experience of our region. The Laurentian chapter's development and involvement in the stewardship of the Stone Valley and Red Sandstone trails provide a major impact for the area. The trips we lead introduce new experiences and places to many - some of whom become regular trip participants, active chapter members, and trip leaders themselves. But I am convinced that our programs are just as important for those who may never come on an outing. I can't tell you the number of times that I've talked to people who have seen our outings schedule and trip reports in the local papers (and I also get credit for going on a lot more trips than I actually get out on, somehow). Without these efforts, many would not have and appreciate the opportunities that we have available for our favorite forms of recreation.

I highly encourage you to attend the Fall Potluck, where ADK Executive Director Neil Woodworth will talk about the club's advocacy activities. These activities - ranging from defending the Clean Air Act to promoting appropriate regulations for motor vehicle use within the Blue Line - have a direct impact on us locally as well as throughout the Adirondacks. So while it sometimes looks like we're just out there having fun, our activities are part of the broader effort that make the Adirondack Mountains unique.