Speaking Out for our Vulnerable, Short-Staffed DEC Forest Rangers
By Dave Gibson, Managing Partner Adirondack Wild

Assemblyman Englebright speaks to Adirondack Wild annual meeting at Keene Valley Congregational Church

The year 2020 finds NYS DEC Forest Rangers, the men and women in the front lines of contact on the Catskill and Adirondack Forest Preserve, increasingly vulnerable. The sheer volume of demands on a field Ranger’s time and skills increase annually while their numbers remain stuck where they were fifty years ago. Adirondack Wild is acting to address this problem.

For example, in the 275,000-acre High Peaks Wilderness region of the Adirondack Park, where many public emergencies occur, there are 10 fewer Forest Rangers working today than were working the same area fifty years ago. Just 106 Forest Rangers serve statewide today - while the total statewide acreage of public lands and conservation easements has grown by a million acres since 1970.

By contrast, the 2.2 million- acre Yellowstone National Park employs three times the number of Rangers than we do for our 5 million acres of public lands, waters and easements across the State of New York.



01/19/20 The Great Recession Changed Our Development Landscape News came from New England’s north woods last fall that a large residential and commercial development on 17,000-acres near Maine’s Moosehead Lake conceived before the Great Recession has not begun and would not move forward. The APA-permitted Adirondack Club and Resort near Tupper Lake has also not commenced, largely for economic reasons.
read more >
ACR development landscape with Tupper Lake in background, 2007.

12/26/19 DEC Evaded Review of Bridge Over Scenic River New York State’s expedient evasion of its own State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR), has no better recent example than the Cedar River Snowmobile Bridge. The new bridge is being built north of Indian Lake, six miles inside the Adirondack Forest Preserve across a river designated by the State as Scenic.A Supreme Court just rubber-stamped DEC’s actions in a ruling against Adirondack Wild and Protect the Adirondacks. read more >
Bridge location on the Cedar River. Photo © Dave Gibson

11/24/19 95% Protected Open Space? APA Knows Better Resource Management (RM) being the most protected private land use classification in the Park, I’ll restrict my post to what APA senior staff said about the four subdivision permits issued for projects of five lots or more in RM from 2012 until today. There have been four such permits issued: Adirondack Club and Resort, Tupper Lake, in 2012; Highland Farmers, Keene, in 2012; New York Land and Lakes, Bleecker, in 2015; and Barille family, North Elba, in 2017. read more >
Woodworth Lake before the subdivision.

11/10/19 State Forest Preserve Use Plans Ignore Climate Change Noah Shaw, former general counsel for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), contributed to the drafting of New York State’s groundbreaking 2019 climate legislation. This September, he wrote an op-ed in the Adirondack Explorer, “What New York’s Bold Climate Law Means for the Adirondacks.” read more >

Indian Lake from Snowy Mountain.

10/06/19 Time To Reconsider An Old Idea, A High Peaks Permit System Credit goes to the Department of Environmental Conservation and its Region 5 facilitators for including a “break-out” session on Permits at its late July High Peaks-Route 73 stakeholder meeting at the Keene Central School. After all, the very word “permit” has been an electrified ‘third rail” (hazardous, indeed) topic for years. read more >
Photo of APA Building in Ray Brook.


01/20/20 • Groups Reaffirm Opposition To Forest Ranger Merger read more >
01/17/20 • NGOs oppose any future ECO, Ranger merger read more >
01/11/20 • Supreme Court says snowmobile bridge ok read more >
01/04/20 • Forest rangers: Thanks, but no thanks, on pay raise read more >
10/18/19 • ON THE SCENE: Two local environmentalists honored read more >
10/15/19 • Warnings and Concerns That Acid Rain Could Return To Adirondacks read more >

01/28/20 • Adirondack Wild Asks for More DEC Forest Rangers in State Budget read more >

01/10/20 • Restore Mother Nature Bond Act read more >
01/06/20 • Adirondack and Catskill Organizations Oppose Merger of NYS DEC Forest Rangers and ECOs read more >
01/27/20 • NY State Budget Statement Concerning the Executive Budget read more >
12/27/19 • Remsen – Lake Placid Travel Corridor Draft Amendment & Draft Supplemental EIS read more >
12/03/19 • Letter to Basil Seggos, Forest Rangers read more >

The mission of Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve is to advance New York’s ‘Forever Wild’ legacy and Forest Preserve policies in the Adirondack and Catskill Parks, and promote public and private land stewardship that is consistent with wild land values through education, advocacy and research.

Photos: Top left: Bog on Upper St Regis Lake. © Ken Rimany;
Field Notes From the Partners: Carved 'Beaver House' sign - by Paul Schaefer. Photo © Ken Rimany;
Wild Action Now photo: Dan Plumley at the Keene Valley Library, along with Naj Wikoff, sharing what they learned and offered to the gathering of leaders at the Conference of World Parliamentarians on Tibet. Photo  © Ken Rimany.

Peter Brinkley, Honorary Chair
Terry Jandreau, Chair
Christopher Amato
Vice Chair & Counsel
David H. Gibson, Partner
Mobile: 518.469.4081

Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve    Founded 1945   PO Box 9247 • Niskayuna New York 12309 | ©