Holden Decker was enjoying one of his first big game hunts in the Adirondacks when something magnificent happened. The 15-year-old had just made his way over a mountain ridge in a quest to bag his first whitetail deer, and there it was — a black bear sitting right in front of him.
The young hunter quickly raised his rifle, took aim, and squeezed the trigger. He shot and the bear ran, then the creature turned back and looked at him. Holden fired again and the bear bolted down the hill and out of sight, completely unscathed.
The End of the Day
Waking up in a beautiful place
My friend and I camped along Horseshoe Lake the other weekright along the St. Lawrence-Franklin-Hamilton county lines. Wren and I woke early while it was still dark, and I lay in my tent listening to the overhead nocturnal calls of migrants such as Veeries, a Wood Thrush or two, and an early Swainson's Thrush.
The ravens croaked at us from the blue ledges above the Hudson River as we ate sandwiches and shared stories about the rapids we'd encountered. The birds — large, shiny-black, intense-looking creatures — soared and perched, as if both curious and offended by our presence. The whole thing felt amazing and wild: A spring rafting trip through a remote section of the Adirondacks, along a turbulent river that stretches from the mountains to New York City.
The enormous pillar of stone seemed to rise from the mist like a brontosaur lifting its head. I had ascended the steep, bedrock-paved trail, clambered over boulders, and then, through the treetops, I saw it — the rock chimney of Chimney Mountain.
You Can't Miss a Chance to Paddle Here
An Afternoon and Evening of Exploring Around Little Tupper Lake and Round Lake
A nice day to head out
While our recent weather has been wet and raw, it had been warmer not long ago and on a day when we could find a gap in the rain, Wren and I headed south of Tupper Lake to the area around Little Tupper Lake and the William C. Whitney Wilderness Area in northern Hamilton County.
Ducks on the move
A lovely new area has been opened to the public for paddling and fishing in the Town of Long Lake. County Line Flow and Fishing Brook can both be paddled, and fishing is allowed from the shoreline of Fishing Brook. There are two put-in locations — one on the southeastern edge of County Line Flow and one at a bridge over Fishing Brook to the west of County Line Flow. I opted to put my boat in by the bridge over Fishing Brook.
The secret is out — the central Adirondacks is a special place, and birds know it.
Starting At Sabattis Bog
Car camping gone bad!
Although I grew up in the Adirondacks, I car camped only a few times. A couple of times was with my family, and once I went alone with my twins at Rollins Pond, when they were ten. I spent most of my time digging trenches around the tent due to the downpours, and when it cleared I was chasing after them on their bikes or keeping them out of the fire. Needless to say, it was stressfull! The plan was to stay five days — we stayed two nights!
Birding as I Paddled
I really enjoy paddling the Sacandaga River out of Speculator, so when Wren and I were there recently I made sure we took advantage of the opportunity to do so. We pushed off from the boat launch at the Sacandaga Community Park, watching the Barn Swallows wheel in and out from beneath the Route 30 bridge, while an Eastern Kingbird sat on the wires flying out and back catching insects.
Nature enthusiasts will have their eyes on the ground this summer.
On April 1, officials with the state Department of Environmental Conservation announced a new plan — the Adirondack Scat Challenge — to inspire more people to get outside and experience nature.
According to DEC Commissioner of Challenges Dirk Dingleberry, the challenge will begin this summer, which he said will forever go down as the season of excretion.
Winter Birds in the Central Adirondacks
In the Adirondacks, March and October are transitional months, with October representing life falling into a slumber, and March a reawakening. The stillness of winter settles in during January and February. But by March, many changes are underway in the avian world.
Looking for a quiet back road with great boreal habitat for birding? Sabattis Circle Road in the Town of Long Lake fits the bill – no pun intended! This six-mile long, half-circle road leads through a variety of habitats and sections of the William C. Whitney and the Round Lake Wilderness Areas. (The William C. Whitney Wilderness Area is an Audubon New York designated "Important Bird Area.") In winter, when many other popular birding locations become inaccessible, Sabattis Circle Road is well-plowed and maintained.
An Early Start on a Cool Morning
So Beautiful You Can't Stay Indoors!
Adirondack seasonal transitions occur as summer gives way to the fall, and the fishing season segues to the annual big Game Hunting Season; as traditions and transitions blend in the chill of the Great South Woods.
A Nice Walk Before Our Paddle
Starting with a Hike
Sunny Paddling Weather!
Being "bitten by the birding bug" can be a positive, life-changing experience. Bird watching can become such an all-consuming activity that it is often hard to recall what life was like in the pre-birding days!
A Long and Winding Road
A Beautiful Place
Waiting to Run Free and Explore
Since the Jessup River sits on a busy stretch of Route 30, I left Wren in the car while I unloaded the boat and our gear for our paddle last week. Wren patiently watched me hoping I would let her out. Once I had done so she wasted no time in racing to the water to plunge in for a drink. We loaded up and set off downstream toward Indian Lake.