Speak up NOW for Adirondack Snowmobiling

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Dear New York Snowmobiler:

Over the next 6 weeks the Adirondack Park Agency will be holding hearings on the classification of lands to be acquired by the state from The Nature Conservancy. The classification proposals involve lands in the Town of Indian Lake, Hamilton County and Towns of Minerva and Newcomb, Essex County.

The classification of these lands will determine whether or not snowmobilers will have access to portions of this property. The land of particular interest is known as the Essex Chain Tract. It was on this land that the Gooley and Polaris sports clubs operated. The big question is, will the property be classified as Wild Forest or will it be classified as Wilderness?

A Wild Forest classification will at least offer the potential of snowmobile use through the Unit Management Plan process (UMP), while a Wilderness or Canoe designation will preclude snowmobile use forever! The only land classification that allows for snowmobile trails is Wild Forest. So far, eight (8) hearings have been scheduled (and more may be scheduled):

Wednesday, June 12, 2013
6:00 pm
Adirondack Park Agency
1133 NY State Route 86
Ray Brook, NY 12977

Monday, June 17, 2013
1:00 pm
Minerva Central School
1466 County Route 29
Olmsteadville, NY
Monday, June 17, 2013
7:00 pm
Newcomb Central School
5535 State Route 28
Newcomb, NY

Wednesday, June 19, 2013
6:00 pm
Downtown Conference Ctr
at Pace University
N163 William Street, 18th Floor
New York, NY

Tuesday, June 25, 2013
6:00 pm
Indian Lake Central School
6345 NYS Route 30
Indian Lake, NY

Monday, July 1, 2013
7:00 pm
The Harley School
1981 Clover Street
Rochester, NY

Tuesday, July 2, 2013
1:00 pm
625 Broadway
Albany, NY

Tuesday, July 2, 2013
7:00 pm
Warren Cty Board of Supervisors Room
Warren County Offices
1340 State Route 9
Lake George, NY

It is extremely important that snowmobilers attend these hearings and ensure that their voice is heard. Our best effort needs to be made to keep the land open to snowmobiling. Pick at least one of the hearings and help us make sure that the APA understands that we want the land classified as Wild Forest (Alternative 4A) and not Wilderness or Canoe.

PLEASE ACT NOW! If you cannot make one of the hearings, then please submit written comments. They do not need to be long; they just need to make the point that you are in favor of Alternative 4A, classifyingg these lands as Wild Forest.

Written comments must be submitted by mail, fax, or email by July 19th, 2013, to:

James E. Connolly, Deputy Director, Planning
Adirondack Park Agency
Post Office Box 99
Ray Brook, NY 12977

Fax: (518) 891-3938
Email: apa_slmp@gw.dec.state.ny.us

The APA website can be found at: http://apa.ny.gov

A full description of the APA’s Alternatives can be accessed here

Clubs in the Adirondack Park as well as their members should also send a copy of their testimony to their Town Supervisor. In the end, Town government may have a great deal to say relative to what the land classification may be. In addition, if there is a trail that you want to see established through or within the Essex Tract, this is the time to make that known to your local town and to NYSSA. The Essex Tract contains at least 19 miles of gravel roads which can be utilized as snowmobile trails.

I can’t emphasize more that this is the time to speak up. It is now or never in relation to the classification of this property and whether or not snowmobilers will have use in the future. Please let us know what hearing(s) you plan on attending and /or are speaking at.

While many of us get limited occasions to enjoy the Adirondack Park for its snowmobiling opportunities, it nevertheless remains the number one place for snowmobile visits by our sport’s participants. According to last year’s economic study, 28% of all riding days occur within the Park. With more and more lands being subdivided and sold to people unfamiliar with our sport, there is no doubt that the trails within the Adirondack Park will become more important to us over time. Whether we live on Long Island, in Chautauqua County or in the heart of the Adirondacks, we must all protect our right to ride on state land within the Park at every opportunity.

Dominic Jacangelo
Executive Director, NYSSA

The New York State Snowmobile Association (NYSSA), a non-profit corporation, is the largest snowmobile association in the country working on behalf of the 135,000 registered NY snowmobile owners, who contribute approximately $868 million to the New York economy, and 235 snowmobile clubs to improve trails, facilities and services for participants, and defend snowmobilers against discriminatory legislation.

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