Next GENERAL MEETING – Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Location: Fellowship Hall – Amherst Community Church
77 Washington Highway, Snyder NY 14226
NOTE: Please park in rear and enter through back door (walk up to 2nd floor)


6:30: EDUCATION WORKSHOP — Get Ready for Bicycling Season with GObike BUFFALO

Though some hard core riders have beefy tires and ride all year round, for most of us April is the beginning of biking season. Get ready with an education workshop from GObike Buffalo. We will learn what to do to get our bikes ready for the spring, and what to do if you don’t have a bike yet. The staff from GObike will let us know about the workshops, repair shop, and events they run. We will learn about cycling opportunities and group rides all over our community, in addition to finding out about some of the group rides our own chapter offers. Get ready to burn calories and cut down your carbon footprint.

Meets in the community room adjacent to the main meeting. Questions or suggestions on education workshops? Contact Education Chair, Teresa Corrigan at TeresaCorrigan85@gmail.com

7:00: SOCIAL HALF-HOUR — Meet & Greet plus Great Refreshments!

7:30: CHAPTER MEETING — Brief Announcements & Committee Reports

7:45: PROGRAM — Presentation by TWAN LEENDERS, President, Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History

The Niagara Frontier chapter of ADK will welcome Twan Leenders from the Peterson Institute of Natural History making his way from Jamestown,NY. Twan is originally from the Netherlands, specializing in animal ecology and conservation management. As a former researcher at Yale University Peabody Museum he participated in several international expeditions gathering data and understanding how to protect biologically important areas and the species that live there. Twan’s research on endangered amphibian populations was recently published titled “Amphibians of Costa Rica – a field guide”. As an avid photographer and illustrator, National Geographic Society has taken notice and  his works have appeared in multiple publications. With all that experience, Twan will be talking about the hidden treasures of WNY and how the urban nature of Jamestown has inspired naturalists the world over.

LOOKING BACK — Presentation by Terry Belke, Photojournalist and Producer of “2 The Outdoors” at WGRZ-TV

The Niagara Frontier Chapter of ADK was treated to both photographic and video journeys through outdoor hidden gems in our area with Terry Belke as our guide. While the snow is still flying it was inspiring to find ideas for future hikes. In case you didn’t have a pad and paper ready, here is the listing of places to visit: Scarborough Bluffs, Ontario; Cheltenham Badlands, Ontario; Haliburton Forest, Ontario; and Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario. The abandoned military base provides a unique back drop for a bus tour of white deer sightings in Romulus, NY. The snow goose migration in Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge should be happening now, so don’t miss out on a chance to view this mass migration in the area!

– Dana Jandzinski

Message From the Chair, Paul Gannon

This month we welcome our new Newsletter Editor, Jaclyn Rossini. Last fall, our previous editor, Mike Weimer, had to give up the position because of work commitments.

Deena Mueller-Funke, our Young Members coordinator, volunteered to serve as interim editor. She carried out her double duties with distinction, and we are grateful for her efforts.

Jaclyn is a new member, who saw the ad for the editor position. She decided to offer her talents to the chapter. Our club is strongest when members give of themselves to further our goals. There are many opportunities to serve.

At this time, we are recruiting hiking and winter co-chairs. Our program and conservation chairs are nearing the end of their terms. Our nominating committee is searching for candidates. We are always looking for trip leaders.

I have been a member of our chapter for a number of years. During that time, I have served in several different capacities. I have always found the experience rewarding. I invite everyone to look for their own opportunities to serve ADK and our chapter. You will have a chance to work with some of the finest people I know. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Openings for Two Program Chairs

We’re looking for nominees for 2 Executive Committee positions to begin September 2018: Conservation Chair and Programs Chair. Get involved in your local ADK Chapter. Your service will be supported by the entire Executive Committee. If you are interested in serving in these positions, please contact MarySchraven1@gmail.com.

Conservation Corner, Lynn Rehfeld-Kenney, Chair

The following are some highlights from the ADK state wide Conservation Committee meeting that I attended as the Niagara Frontier Chapter representative. It is expected that Governor Cuomo will sign the land classification for the Boreas Ponds Tract in the Adirondacks in the near future. Read the recent Adirondac magazine article for specific details. There will be two small parking areas that will require a permit to park there. One handicapped lot is .1 miles from the dam and the other for paddlers is 0.9 miles from the canoe/kayak put in. An assistant forest ranger will be stationed there to enforce the parking. The current lot that is farther away will remain available for parking. The addition of Boreas Ponds and several other parcels to land already designated as Wilderness will result in a 280,000 acre wilderness, the largest east of the Mississippi River. It will eventually be named and have its own unit management plan (UMP) on how to manage the land.

The Adirondack Preservation Society sued to prevent the proposed removal of the RR tracks that run in between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid so it could be turned into a rails to trails path. The RR line stopped running 3 years ago because it was not profitable. Several unsuccessful attempts have been made since the 1980’s to try and make the entire 130 miles stretch starting in Utica profitable. A judge upheld the Preservation Society lawsuit because the definition of a travel corridor, the land designation needed for the RR to run through the Adirondack Park, did not include an option where it could be changed to a trail. The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) proposes to change the definition of this segment of RR corridor so a rails to trails path could be approved. If this happens, then ADK proposes it only be used for non-motorized access. This would prevent a conflict between snowmobilers and Nordic skiers in the winter as well as hikers/ bicyclists and ATV/ electric bicyclists in the summer. The ADK Conservation Committee adopted a resolution to allow the ADK legal counsel to advocate for the change in definition and for non-motorized trail use.

The ADK legislative staff met with Gov. Cuomo’s budget staff and state legislators regarding an executive budget proposal to change how tax base costs have been determined for the Catskill and Adirondack Parks since 1886. They were informed that the local governments are very opposed to this change and it would result in local governments voting against any new land acquisitions. Hopefully the lobbying effort was successful. Already the New York State assembly and senate budget proposals do not include a change in how land value is determined.

The empty oil tanker RR cars remain parked on the spur RR track leading to the Tahawus Mine. Ice damaged part of the RR tracks this winter so even if the Berkshire Hathaway Company can be pressured to remove the RR cars, the RR cars cannot be moved until the tracks are repaired.

Congratulations to our Chapters Recent 46ers!!

The climbers listed below were celebrated at the September 12 ADK General Meeting as new 46ers. Bravo!

46er #, Name, Date Completed, Final Peak

10,449, Mike Hilburger, 8/26/17, Skylight
10202, Beth Hartz, 6/10/17, Gothics
9986, John Burnham, 10/12/16, Saddleback
9183, Manon Paquet, 9/06/15, Haystack

Beth Hartz from Clarence climbed Gothics this summer to finish her 46 High Peaks!

ADK 46er Update: Nearly 100 members in our chapter have accomplished this impressive goal since the chapter’s formation in 1971. To add your name, send it to Cheryl Peluso, cherylp17@verizon.net, or call Kate Hacker at 688-8618. If you don’t have a number because you didn’t register we can still add you to our 46er list.

Many Niagara ADK members are currently working towards this objective. 46er Lynn Kenney is the keeper of our chapter’s official 46er banner, an impressive prop to display from the summit of your 46th peak. Please contact Lynn if your completion is imminent, to borrow the banner and properly photo your achievement! (Lynn Kenney: 716-825-7329).


I attended the Adirondack Mountain Club annual meeting and quarterly Directors meeting in Lake George on April 1. There are typically up to 50 people attending these meetings, including chapter Directors, club officers, club staff and committee chairs. This meeting also included a Directors roundtable, which I’ll mention later, but in total we spent over 6 hours discussing past performance, current status and future direction of the club. The annual meeting reviewed the financial performance of the club for 2016 – in summary 2016 was a solid year: operating surplus, increasing revenues, increased donations and increasing membership. Not spectacular performance, but solid performance.

2016 also saw the start of a major reconstruction project at the Heart Lake property. ADK received a 3:1 matching grant from NYS to improve the High Peaks Information Center and the surrounding facilities and campground. The HPIC was closed late in October 2016 and reopened in February of this year. The interior was completely gutted and rebuilt. A new well was also dug in the fall. Exterior finishing will commence once the weather indicates winter is over. The next steps will be construction of a new washhouse, concession area, new septic and new campground loop. The existing washhouse will be renovated as well, however that will not happen until the end of the project. Over 600 hours of volunteer effort went into the reconstruction of the HPIC with some local chapter members participating.

An ongoing concern has been increased use (overuse?) of the Eastern High Peaks region. With the increased use have come parking and traffic issues, waste disposal issues and backcountry abuse. The effort to address this started last year and will continue this year. This is a complicated issue and if anyone wants to discuss in more detail please contact me, but to summarize: discussions are ongoing with the State DOT regarding traffic and parking, education efforts are ongoing to address waste disposal and LNT efforts in the backcountry, and discussions are ongoing with the DEC about reopening the UMP for the Eastern High Peaks region.

Some conservation issues that ADK will take a public stance on include:
• Opposition to the NYS proposal of dining and lodging facilities on the forest preserve.
• Opposition to the NYS proposal of a hotel on Goat Island
• Opposition to the 2018/2019 NYS Constitutional Convention
• Support for including an amendment to the NYS Constitution for an Environmental Bill of Rights.

Finally, we started the day with a Directors Roundtable. An effort is being made to assist less active club chapters to increase local participation: whether that means increasing local chapter outings or having an increased voice on local conservation issues is up to each individual chapter to decide where to focus. We are lucky in the Niagara Frontier Chapter that we have an active chapter with many dedicated volunteers. Other chapters around the state are not as lucky and we, as Directors, are attempting to share ideas on what makes our chapter successful. This is something that will precede each Directors meeting for the foreseeable future until we run out of ideas to talk about.
As always, if anyone would like more information on any topic please don’t hesitate to contact me at rlaing537@gmail.com.

Calling All Young Members!

The Young Members subgroup of the Niagara Frontier chapter is looking forward to another great year of events specially designed for members in their 20s and 30s. The goal of the Young Members subgroup is to promote greater participation and membership of young members through special events for them and communications from me, the Young Members Coordinator. My name is Deena Mueller and I recently joined the Niagara Frontier chapter.  In the next few months, I will be reaching out to young members by email and Facebook to inform you of events and seek your input on what events you want the Young Members subgroup to organize. Until then, you can email at deena.mueller1@gmail.com about your suggestions and to let me know that you’d like to be a part of the Young Members group. Cheers! – Deena Mueller

ADK members have a smorgasbord of outings to choose from, including year-round local outings, and an enticing variety of challenging trips to Adirondack Park. Members can also travel around the world with the ADK Adventure Travel Program, and spend fun-filled days with like- minded ADK members at some of the most exciting destinations on the planet. Qualified ADK Adventure Travel Leaders offer knowledge, experience, and helpful advice to insure these are Trips of a Lifetime.

The newest ADK Adventure Trips include Hut-to-Hut Backpacking in Norway, Hiking Alaska’s Denali National Park, Cycling throughout Germany’s Wine Country, and Hiking in Finland’s National Parks. Look for details in the Adirondac July/August issue, or on the adk.org website.

ADK-NFC Member Paul Gannon recalls a recent ADK Adventure Travel trip to the Canadian Rockies: “Do you love the outdoors? Enjoy our local club trips? Consider taking part in ADK Adventure Travel. Every edition of Adirondac lists club- sponsored trips around the world. I have attended three of them so far, most recently one to the Canadian Rockies last fall. Based out of the Lake Louis Inn, every day we drove to a different trail head in Banff National Park for a wonderful day hike in the spectacular Canadian Rockies. I enjoyed the company of fellow ADK members, who are some of the best people I know. It was literally a life-changing experience for me. Next spring, I will take a float trip through the desert canyons of Utah along the San Juan River. There are still openings. Maybe you will join me. See you out there!”

Here’s a fun way to display the wonderful opportunities offered by ADK!

To enlarge the image, click here.

ADK-NFC Meeting Cancellation Policy
The Executive Committee approved a new policy coordinate the decision to cancel the Monthly General Meetings with the Amherst Central School Closings. Since the Amherst Community Church property abuts Amherst High School, the winter weather conditions that warrant school closings will also dictate our General Meetings. When Amherst Schools or After School Activities are cancelled on the day of our ADK meeting on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, then our monthly general meeting will be cancelled. Cancellation news will be reinforced with emails and Facebook postings.

ADK-NFC Bylaws Changes
Minor modifications to our chapter bylaws will be voted on for approval by membership at our Annual Picnic/meeting on June 11.

  • Chair/Vice-chair terms: “The Chair and Vice Chairs may be reelected for one 2-year term and can later be reelected after at least a 1-year vacancy”
  • Addition of Appointed Position: “Historian: Assembles and safely stores hard copies of ADK-NFC Newsletters, Annual History Reports, and other important documents in order to provide a historical chapter record and reference library to support future ADK operations.”

Advocacy Updates
Consistent with the ADK mission to protect the Waterways of New York State, the ADK-NFC Executive Committee has voted to support the following endeavors:

  • Our Outer Harbor (OOH): We joined the OOH Coalition, a group of WNY advocacy groups dedicated to preserving the public trust on Buffalo’s waterfront. Any development of the public properties in the Outer Harbor must benefit the wider public, be water dependent, and support the unique natural character of the Outer Harbor.
  • Great Lakes Restoration Initiative: ADK signed a letter circulated by HOW (Healing Our Waters – Great Lakes Coalition) urging the federal government to not cut funding to the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, a federal program that has helped to remove water pollution and harmful algae from the Lakes.
  • Northern Access Pipeline: ADK supports the DEC decision to stop the natural gas pipeline proposed to transport natural gas from PA to Canada, which would intersect and threaten over a hundred waterways and wetlands that marble the WNY landscape.

We are delighted to introduce 2 new young members of our Executive Committee!

  • MARY KATHRYN NOACK, Electronics Communications Chair – Mary Kathryn loves the Adirondacks and is an avid explorer of the Adirondack Region. A SUNY at Buffalo graduate with a degree in Communications, Mary Kathryn has extensive management and technology experience with numerous projects affiliated with UB. In addition, Mary Kathryn volunteers at the DEC Nature Preserve at Reinstein Woods, and is very knowledgeable about Beavers! Mary Kathryn’s sweet personality and cheerful spirit are wonderful additions to our group.
  • DEENA MUELLER, Young Members Coordinator – Deena is an avid outdoorswoman who enjoys all winter sports in addition to hiking, paddling and mountain climbing! Originally from Chicago, Deena is an attorney and has lived in WNY for about 4 years. Deena has enthusiastically embraced the Young Member Chair position, reaching out to members in their 20s and 30s for both local and Adirondack adventures, starting with a Vertical Climbing outing on Saturday April 8. Deena’s dedication and eager enthusiasm are fantastic additions to our Board.

Gerry Rising Pens New Essay for ADK Chapter Visit
At a monthly meeting in 2017, Gerry Rising, ADK member and former Buffalo News ‘Nature Watch’ Columnist, honored us with an evening to remember, as we listened attentively to Gerry read personal essays from his new book titled “Birds and Birdwatchers”. Inspired by this special occasion with ADK friends, 46-er Gerry shared a newly-composed essay with the group describing unforgettable personal tales of some of his High Peaks adventures. He graciously agreed to share his new essay with our chapter. Click here to view Gerry’s essay, “Two Climbs.”

Join the ADK Niagara Frontier Chapter!
Click here to visit the Adirondack Mountain Club (ADK) website. Select a Membership Type and Number of Years. Under Chapter, select Niagara Frontier.

Affiliate Membership of the Niagara Frontier Chapter:
We welcome ADK members of other Chapters to become Affiliate Members of the Niagara Frontier Chapter! Affiliate Members receive our monthly newsletter and may attend our chapter outings and events. Annual dues are $5. Contact the ADK Membership office to arrange Affiliate Membership: (518) 668-4447 or laurie@adk.org

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