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DEC Seeking Input on Hammon Pond Wild Forest Plan
New York Ag Connection - 11/08/2018

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is seeking public input to improve recreational opportunities and natural resource protections in the Hammond Pond Wild Forest Management Unit, Regional Director Bob Stegemann announced Wednesday.

"DEC is seeking public input on how to best manage these lands and provide access for a variety of outdoor recreational activities," said Director Stegemann. "DEC's goal is to protect the natural resources, provide outdoor recreational opportunities for residents and visitors, and ensure the Forest Preserve is an asset to the communities and a benefit to local economies."

A public meeting will be held at 6 p.m. on Nov. 13, at the North Hudson Town Hall, 3024 US Route 9, approximately one mile from Exit 29 of the Northway (I-87). The meeting will provide the public with an opportunity to provide input on future recreational uses, as well as present and future issues. The meeting facility is wheelchair accessible. Please provide any requests for specific accommodations to 518-623-1275 at least one week in advance.

DEC completed a Unit Management Plan (UMP) for the Hammond Pond Wild Forest in 1988. There have been two amendments since then -- the 1993 Bicycle Trail Amendment and the 2016 State Route 73/9N Viewing Area Amendment. The 2018 draft UMP has been wholly revised to protect the unit's spectacular natural resources and enhance public recreational access.

Management proposals in this draft include:

- Create high quality, universally accessible parking, camping and trail recreation opportunities.

- Provide equestrian trails that are complimentary to the equestrian camping facilities at the Frontier Town Campground & Day Use Area.

- Contribute to the completion of the 4,600-mile North Country National Scenic Trail by providing a route connection across the Hammond Pond Wild Forest.

- Designate existing community connector snowmobile trails in UMP for continued use.

- Construct and designate tent sites, and construct one new lean-to.

- Strategically connect and extend linear trails to create loops and interesting longer distance opportunities

Located in the eastern region of the Adirondacks, the Hammond Pond Wild Forest consists of 45,500 acres of Adirondack Forest Preserve lands in more than 50 parcels between Lake Champlain in the east, State Route 74 in the south, the Northway in the west, and State Route 9N in the north. Some parcels are located between the Northway and US Route 9, and around the communities of Keene and Keene Valley.

Natural water features in the Hammond Pond Wild Forest include portions of the Schroon River, Black Brook, Crowfoot Brook, Split Rock Falls, Hammond Pond, and Moose Mountain Pond. The larger peaks include Bloody Mountain, Peaked Hill, Harris Hill, and Baxter Mountain. Current recreational opportunities include hiking, paddling, boating, fishing, primitive camping, a historic fire tower, hunting, trapping, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and wildlife viewing.

Public comments will be accepted until Dec. 7. Public comment can be provided at the meeting or directly to Forester Corrie Magee by mail or email: NYSDEC, 232 Golf Course Rd, Warrensburg, NY 12885 or R5.ump@dec.ny.gov.

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