ADK Fall Outing
Oct. 26-28
Watkin’s Glen
Many hikes, bikes and paddles
Stay at Seneca Lodge or Harbor Hotel
Winery tours, Presidents’ Dinner and more
For all the information and to register,



Tuesday, October 9, 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 PM | Map & Compass Workshop

As hikers, we are always told to carry a map and compass, but what are some of the best ways to use these tools before, after and during a hike? Join us to find out more and practice with your friends.  Dr. Jerry Sultz,  one of the founders of the Niagara Frontier Search and Rescue Team will give us some basic information on finding compass bearings, using a compass to make sure you are on the right course to your destination, and using a compass to help plan a hiking route.  Jerry is also a former chapter chair with plenty of experience hiking locally and in the Adirondacks.  He will give us a wonderful perspective!

After Dr. Sultz’s presentation we will practice taking compass bearings and walking in a given direction, and using a compass and topographic maps to plan a hike.  Please bring a compass if you have one!

7:00 PM | Social Time — Meet & Greet plus Great Refreshments!

7:30 PM | General Meeting & Jay Burney Presentation

We are extremely excited to have Jay Burney for our October speaker!  He is executive director of the Pollinator Conservation Association. Which is dedicated to raising awareness of pollinator conservation issues and developing strategies to both restore and conserve pollinators and associated biota. Jay is also coordinator of the Niagara River Greenway Pollinator Partnership and will be discussing some of the amazing projects he’s involved in along the waterfront and western New York region. To find out more on this fascinating topic go to www.pollinatorconservationassociation.org

Hope to see you all at Jays presentation!


Message From the Chair

Last Tuesday, we held our first meeting of our new year, and it was a great one. The annual ice cream social and slide show is one of my favorite chapter events. I am always amazed by the variety of places there are to explore!

Congratulations to the latest group of 46ers we honored at the meeting. Becoming a 46er is a worthy goal and quite an accomplishment.

Registration is now open for the ADK Fall Outing near Watkins Glen.

Autumn is upon us, and with it, peak day hiking weather. On Saturday, I attended a hike in the McCarty Hills State Forest south of Ellicottville. We are very fortunate in Western New York to have so many parcels of state and county forestland available for recreation.

Many of the trails there are maintained by the WNY Mountain Bicycling Association (WNYMBA). This organization develops and maintains trails throughout our area. They also produce wonderful maps. All of their trails are multiple use. We should be very grateful to them for this work. This is a great example of how different groups can contribute, each in their own way, to achieving common goals.

Speaking of different outdoor groups, hunting season is approaching. During this time, please be aware of locations where hunting is permitted, and use caution when in those places.

Enjoy the fall weather. I hope to see you out there

Paul M. Gannon

Conservation Corner

Next Conservation Committee Meeting

Tuesday October 16th from 7-9pm | All members welcome Gander Outdoors Lodge, 880 Young St., Tonawanda 14150

Keeping an Eye on Tonawanda Coke 

Tonawanda Coke Corp. continues to be in the news, as the company continues to pollute the air. On behalf of our chapter’s Conservation Committee, member Ellen Gibson wrote a letter indicating the negative impact the company has had on local citizens and recreation. As requested, the letter was emailed to the Grand Island Supervisor to be printed and presented to Judge Skretny on Sept. 19.

Buffalo’s Outer Harbor News

“$5 million project will feature a one-mile nature walk, four-acre lawn space, and an overlook to look out onto Lake Erie.”, and is expected to be completed by May 2019. This info is per stories in the local news the week of Sept. 15. We’ll keep an eye on that, as well as any proposals for development closer to Times Beach.

Benson Mine Site Cleanup

On your next drive to the Adirondacks along NYS Route 3 east of Star Lake, you might notice some of the dilapidated buildings of Benson Mines, closed since 1978, have been removed. Around 1990, it was discovered that hundreds of thousands of gallons of fuel oil are floating on the water table below the site. Attempts at clean-up have been sporadic but revived in 2012, at the same time it was declared a state Hazardous Waste Site. Today, the cleanup is aided by a state spill fund paid for by an excise tax on oil. Read the excellent article by Tim Rowland in the September 7 issue of  ‘Adirondack Explorer’, in print or on-line.

Tonawanda Bike Trail Enhancements 

City of Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis announced a $500,000 grant by the Ralph C Wilson Jr Foundation towards bike trail enhancements to the City of Tonawanda, specifically earmarked for the area in and around Tonawanda’s Intermodal Hub, and on Young St. where the existing rail-trail will be extended north.

RECYCLE! Batteries and Bulbs

We’re going to revive the practice of allowing members to bring in certain items for recycling if you’re unable to take these items directly to collection sites at stores such as Home Depot and Lowe’s, I will collect those specific household items at our chapter meetings (no large quantities, please). Items accepted for recycle include non-leaking rechargeable batteries, such as from power tools, cell phones, & laptops (no AA, AAA, C, D, or 9 volt single use batteries, please). Other items for recycle include common indoor or outdoor compact fluorescent bulbs that are not broken (NO broken lights and NO fluorescent tubes will be accepted). We’ll also recycle clean PLASTIC shopping or grocery bags.

Upcoming Meetings 

The next state ADK Conservation Meeting will be in Albany on November 3. Our chapter rep, Lynn RehfeldKenny, will attend and submit a report.

All chapter members are welcome to attend our monthly Conservation Committee meetings on the 3rd Tuesday of each month—details for October are below.

–Bob Van Hise, Chair

Attacks on the environment never stop. To learn the latest environmental news, join the Conservation Committee!


RECOGNITION: Award Recipients Honored at Picnic

Volunteer of the Year Award
This year, the ADK-NFC Volunteer of the Year Awards have been given to Janet and David Kowalski. Our Chapter would like to recognize their many contributions that have enabled our monthly meetings to run more smoothly and helped create a sense of community among our chapter members. Janet, a past Chapter Chair and Programs Chair, is a frequent hike participant and leader. Janet often contributes engaging trip reports for the newsletter, which has the effect of everyone wishing they had gone on the outing. Janet is a gracious hostess and has made sure the Executive Committee was well-fed. We have come to count on her healthy and delicious pot-luck dishes! Janet is there to lend a hand to any of us, helping us to meet newsletter deadlines, edit our writings, and offer to help whenever needed. Janet’s enthusiasm and love for ADK is evident in every conversation one has with her. David co-leads outings with Janet. He has assisted with regular postings of trip reports, managing the home page of the website and setting up the AV equipment during monthly meetings. David writes a Conservation Blog that often features ADK sponsored conservation initiatives. Janet and David, we thank you for being who you are and for all the ways you uplift, problem solve and help make our chapter a strong community!

Conservationist of the Year Award
The Adirondack Mountain Club Niagara Frontier Chapter, Conservation Committee presented their 2018 Conservationist of the Year award at the club’s annual June picnic at the Chestnut Ridge Park Commissioner’s cabin. This award recognized the members from various groups who have spent decades working towards a proper and complete clean-up of nuclear waste at the West Valley Demonstration Project in West Valley, NY. The recipients gratefully accepted the award in honor of all of the past and present coalition members for their dedicated advocacy and community activism.

In particular they recognized Carol Mongerson, who was the founder and leading member of the Coalition on West Valley Nuclear Wastes until she passed, Maria Maybee from the Seneca Nation of Indians and Kathy McGoldrick.

The recipients are as follows:
Ray Vaughan: West Valley Citizen Task Force member and past steering committee member of the Coalition on West Valley Nuclear Wastes
Joanne Hameister: West Valley Action Network and Coalition on West Valley Nuclear Wastes steering committee
Agnes Williams:  West Valley Action Network and Indigenous Women’s Initiatives
Diane D’Arrigo: West Valley Action Network & Nuclear Information & Resource Service
Barbara Warren: West Valley Action Network and Citizens’ Environmental Coalition

Congratulations to our Chapters Recent 46ers!!

The climbers listed below were celebrated at the September 11, 2018 ADK General Meeting as new 46ers. Bravo!

Name, Final Peak

  • Lin Pierce, Whiteface
  • Stephen Pierce, Whiteface
  • Marion Hanover, Redfield
  • Lauren Gundlach, Whiteface
  • Jason Gundlach, Whiteface

2nd Round of 46:

  • Kate Hacker
  • Ken Redding

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

Carry on our chapter tradition of carrying our ADK-NFC 46er Flag to the top of your 46th peak. Call Lynn Kenney (825-7329) to pick up the 46er Flag so it can be a part of your celebratory photo when you complete your final peak to become an Adirondack 46er.

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

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.

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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