Conservation Archive

Conservation Report

July, 2014

Vice-Chair, Conservation: John Omohundro, 315-265-8365

Akwesasne Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) - The news in late May was that the residents of Akwesasne, St. Lawrence County legislature, and the State of New York had come to an agreement about a long-standing land settlement claim by the Mohawks. In the MOU, parts of Brasher and Massena towns will be made available for sale to the reservation. To sweeten the deal, the state promises to look into the feasibility of the interstate highway known as “the rooftop highway.” The state also offered to explore opening parts of State Rt 56 in Colton to four-wheelers to further the cross-county trail. Officials in the two affected townships are not happy with the deal, and some Mohawks are also upset. It’s too soon to understand the impact of changing the highway law on motors in the Stone Valley Cooperative Recreation Area. The MOU still needs to be approved by the state legislature and Congress.

Stone Valley Cooperative Recreation Area - The Town of Colton’s work to develop the southeast trailhead for whitewater release events continues, funded by a grant from the NY Department of State. There will be a viewing platform overlooking the first set of rapids, near the dam. Parking and signage will be expanded. The town has purchased a nearby building to serve as its visitor reception center, offering changing rooms, restrooms, and other amenities. The impact on the seven-mile hiker trail will be minimal except for increased use if the promotion efforts are successful. Plans by others to develop a mountain bike trail on the west side of the river, between the pipeline and the hiking trail, are on hold until the property owner, Brookfield Renewable, officially designates cycling as an “approved use” in its land use plans - probably in the next year or so. Meanwhile, a fine new trail is in operation on the east side of Lenney Road in the O’Malley Brook area, maintained by the area’s cyclists.

Adirondack newsfeed - If you are interested in news and stories about the Adirondacks and you’ve read and enjoyed the Adirondack Explorer magazine, I heartily recommend the free e-mail feed from “Adirondack Almanack.” Daily environmental, natural historical, political, artistic, historical, and other types of stories come through in handy short form, linked to the original sources for greater depth. Up-to-date reports