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-   -   Lake Lilaís Future? (http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=27751)

jam66 08-02-2020 09:50 AM

Lake Lilaís Future?
 
This past July I was fortunate to take 2 trips to Lake Lila. I camped on Lila for a few nights the second week of July with my wife and son until the Horse Flies got the best of them. The last week of July, myself and a long time coworker camped on Lila for 3 nights. I first sank my toes into the sandy beach at the ďput inĒ over 25 years ago.
While itís one of my favorite places , itís also becoming a favorite place of uninformed, ignorant and very selfish campers.
On my first trip this year, as we launched , my wife commented about the large amount of white smoke coming from Spruce Island. As we paddled closer, it was apparent that there was a forest fire on the west end of the island. A later conversation with a camper , who evacuated during the middle of the night confirmed this. Luckily he was awoken by a fellow camper across the way at a nearby site. Also spoke with an Assistant Ranger who said either fireworks or a rogue campfire started this. Is was put out with portable pumps and hoses..
On my second trip we took one of the open sandy beach sites. The fire pit was ripped apart and had been extended onto the ďhollow groundĒ. There were fish carcasses, cigarette butts and a paper plate in the fire. The site was littered with live tree branches, many small trees and been slashed with an axe and several smaller live trees were cut down. I also picked up many butts out of the water. Last several trips before this year there were also met with nighttime fireworks and drunken yelling during the night.
My concern is that my son will not experience the same place with his son that I did 25 years ago. This year with COVID, Im sure more people have flocked to more remote places. I realize that Rangers canít police every site in the Adirondacks but how do we stop this behavior?

jam66 08-02-2020 09:55 AM

Pics
 
2 Attachment(s)
My friend and I picked up the one campsite and made a stone bench/table

Woodly 08-02-2020 10:35 AM

Sad to read. We need more Rangers issuing more tickets.
More education.
Less alcohol and drugs.

dundee 08-03-2020 07:31 AM

It's happening everywhere, not just Lila. I don't know of an easy answer.

Dr_1400 08-03-2020 08:48 AM

How do rangers handle these cases of camping within 150í of water (without being at a designated site)? A fine? I see this fairly often, and am not sure how much the depleted ranger forces even care to be informed of what must be countless instances? Or if theyíre strung out fighting bigger battles?

As many have said, this year has been concerning. The combination of a warm, dry summer and Covid (no work, no money to go to normal far off vacations, a desire to be with friends outdoors, etc) leave me worried that more and more parts of the ADK are being loved to death. I worry that our areas like Lila canít sustain the increased use. Fireworks, packed launches and trailheads, and roadside litter seem the norm this summer. I hope itís a Covid anomaly and more ďregularĒ usage returns in 2021.

Wldrns 08-03-2020 12:08 PM

I have heard of cases wherein the ranger says "move your site now or get a fine". I do not know of any actual fines that have been imposed for the 150 foot rule, but I would not doubt that there have been some. I suppose a lot may depend on how egregious the violation is, in combination with other offenses noted at the site, not to mention how many other violations the ranger may have encountered on that day.

I do know of at least one case however, where a large group of friends on a guided trip exceeded the allowed max size of 8 persons in a wilderness area. They did split into two groups, each with a different guide, but they tried to travel and hang out as one large group instead of camping one mile apart per the regulation. The friends insisted on congregating together even though the guides knew they could not do so legally. They were politely warned by a ranger twice to split up. Caught the third time, each guide received a ticket for $100.

Rich Lockwood 08-03-2020 01:47 PM

my experience
 
I was once camping 150' back from the water not in a designated site when a ranger visited me. He mentioned the 150' rule and I pulled out my 150' spool of fishing line I carry for this and explained that I had measured and offered to show him . He was amazed and wished me a good trip and thanked me for following the rules. . He was very nice.
Turtle

DuctTape 08-03-2020 02:09 PM

Hi Turtle.

Nice running into you the other day.

montcalm 08-03-2020 05:23 PM

Boy, when the sky falls, it pours!

I wonder if we can get Mr. Marylou to take this and sell it to Jack Ma for us?


Unfortunately, these issues ain't new. I can recall 5? years back being on Lila and hearing loud fools late into the night. There was a Steward working who I talked to though, and perhaps he paid them a visit. He told me they mostly bust people for smoking weed (of all stupid things). Sites are sometimes a little dirty, but carry a trash bag and clean up if it's a mess. Some people are a-holes, and there's no always a maid - but I do believe those Stewards visit the open sites and clean them up if they are damaged or dirty.

It's unfortunate, but it seems all these areas need a Steward or AFR to patrol, at min.

TrailBlaser 08-04-2020 12:50 PM

In the early 90s, when I was an AFR first on the Oswegatchie and then on Bog River/Lows, I would go in on a Tuesday and come out on Sunday. The patrols on both Tuesday and Sunday included campsite inspection, cleanup and restoration; almost always picking up trash and rebuilding fire pits. Sometimes it involved more work - like filling in trenches that people dug around their tents or putting out smoldering fires that were left behind. The only bad encounter I had as an AFR was on Lows Lake. A party of 4 men were illegally camped on one of the islands reserved for the Boy Scouts. I noticed smoke coming from the island and knowing that it was in-between scout troop visits, I went to investigate. One of them was on the beach. Still floating offshore, I informed him (nicely) that public camping on the island during the summer was not allowed. He called his other three companions who emerged from the woods. After he informed them that I said they can't camp on the island, one of them asked me to come ashore and "help" them move their camp. Of course, I didn't do that and instead reminded them that they must move their camp before nightfall. Of course, they didn't move. When they left two days later, I radioed my supervising ranger and gave him a description of the men and their canoes. Later I learned that he met them at the lower dam take-out and ticketed all 4 of them.

montcalm 08-04-2020 01:08 PM

The first time I went up the Oswegatchie, I stopped and checked out most of the sites. They were all in top notch condition and I was surprised how many there were!

I believe I passed the AFR coming downstream on my return, so I do believe this was still happening not so long ago.

I've had the same experience at Lows. Never once saw a bad site and always saw an AFR.

Lila I've seen a little more haggard, but I'll also argue it's the easiest to get to the majority of campsites of those 3. I've also noticed people carrying A LOT of gear up and down that carry. To me, this directly correlates with issues. Big coolers of beer usually = disruptive and careless behavior. Unfortunately there's no real law against that, that I know of. If you're strong enough to carry it in, you can do it.

RichieC 08-10-2020 02:53 PM

Well A big cooler of beer very well may involve disruptive behavior, but not in every case ( pardon the pun). We seem to end up with a good bit, beer balls in the day. Sometimes more adult beverages. But we aren't a particularly loud crew, though are prone to a good laugh that may carry. Relegate that to the evening after a day of excursions.. Like up Frederika or up to Lowe's lake, Shingle shanty to the wire, etc.

We also leave everyplace we visit on day trips, beach landings and of course base camps- bereft of all visible trash down to bag ties and gum wrappers and cigarette butts ( people don't seem to realize those filters are forever and they are nothing but trash..) Not bragging, just we all like to find places in that condition. We filled three bags with empty cans at the train station at Lila. Then crushed them flat at the lean-to to finish the trip out. (That was snowmobilers no doubt).

Lake Lila has always been found in pretty good shape in my experience- seems like a lot of slickers have invaded places they obviously are not prepared to respect or want to conserve.

Anybody visited the Nehasane station building lately- wonder if it has completely caved in. A large hole in roof a couple of years ago.. usually a building does not last long after the roof fails like that- so I was wondering. First time way back in late 80's, it was in great shape, we even went upstairs for a peek. Second last time didn't feel safe walking in middle of rooms, and steps upstairs were apparently long gone. Last time only felt safe looking in the door... would have preferred they were able to keep it somehow. No money in it I guess.

backwoodsman 08-17-2020 11:54 AM

Eventually , like the state parks I think you'll have to buy a camping permit , give your ID and license plate numbers , so if there are problems the authorities will know who to question. Plus it will help pay for maintenance and enforcement .

Lucky13 08-21-2020 10:37 AM

This is likely on the horizon now that Emperor Cuomo has shut down so much of the state's economy and created huge revenue shortages. I'd also be wary of anything constitutional proposed, because a constitutional change followed by a land sale could solve some of the shortfalls. User fees would be preferable to long term loss of acreage, but NYS has never been famous for taking the long view! But I saw plates from Alaska and Arizona while I was up there last week, and I think it is time we charge non residents for the use of our playground. And if you can require hunter safety and teach it via internet, a camping course requirement would seem like a no brainer. Not that that will cure laziness or downright insensitivity and selfishness.

cutbait 08-21-2020 12:28 PM

[QUOTE=Lucky13;282839]This is likely on the horizon now that Emperor Cuomo has shut down so much of the state's economy and created huge revenue shortages.

Yes, be very wary. Perhaps our King could take the taxpayer money budgeted to advertise the NY outdoors - including the ADKs, and use it to hire more Rangers or increase education for those using the outdoors.

Not sure if advertising was even needed to begin with (perhaps some hidden agenda such as funneling money to some cronies at an ad agency?), however, there is ample evidence that no more NY taxpayer money needs to be spent on marketing the ADKs to other New Yorkers.

montcalm 08-21-2020 05:14 PM

This is getting pretty political and I'm not sure why one side is able to be political and the other not, but here goes...

Those "ads" are all over. They pertain to all parts of New York and i believe are meant to be information for tourists within and out of state. I won't say whether it's a good idea or a bad one, but I believe it was meant to try to boost the economy of upstate.

cutbait 08-25-2020 10:08 AM

Not at all political - not sure what you mean by sides. The only "side" that I'm on is that of the taxpayer and making sure that our tax dollars are allocated as efficiently as possible.
I offered a practical solution that involved the reallocation of wasted tax dollars - stop spending money where not needed and put it where it is needed.
Each time I drive on RTE 390 North right before it goes into 590N near Henreitta,NY I see a tacky looking 20' circle of outdoor carpet on the side of the road with an I Love NY logo in it - this is just one example of many, of how tax dollars are wasted on marketing by our state. Stop the wasteful spending and put the $$ where it will actually be of benefit.

montcalm 08-25-2020 10:55 AM

It didn't have to be political but you made it so by referring to the Governor as "King".

Listen, I don't agree with everything that Cuomo does - some of it seems entirely stupid with regards to upstate, but I think think they were actually trying to accomplish something with this. I don't know if the big "I love NY" signs work, but the metal signs are actually pretty informative to tourists. Again I think the idea is to "grab" people zooming through the state via I90 and direct them to areas of interest in the state. If people from Mass and Ohio zooming through don't know it's there, then they don't know the businesses that rely on tourism are there.

Not sure it actually works... but get used to it, advertising has been part of our culture for I don't even know how long, but I wouldn't expect it to leave any time soon.

Where would you direct the money that would be more effective? Medicare/aid? Suburban integration? Public land works? Environmental protection? Infrastructure?

cutbait 08-25-2020 02:23 PM

Yes, the directional signs are good and are actual benefit for those using the roads - and infrastructure is at the top of list of proper use of taxpayer funds. Our state was beyond broke before this pandemic, so no to more waste in these areas: Medicare/aid? Suburban integration? Public land works?

Advertising being a part of culture for a long time is true, however, the longevity of something is not a valid argument for the wasteful use of government (taxpayer funds) on said activity.

Here's my suggestion that you may have missed from the first post: take the taxpayer money budgeted to advertise the NY outdoors - including the ADKs, and use it to hire more Rangers or increase education for those using the outdoors.

I at least offered a practical use of tax dollars in my first post to help the situation.

PS
Check out an interesting article in the ADK Enterprise publication today on the 36K acre Whitney estate . The owner is reluctant to sell to the state because he is doubtful that they can care for it properly.

He is right to be cautious. Several years ago, the state bought Hemlock and Canadice lakes from Monroe County and the level of oversight and care for these two jewels is nowhere near what it was when the county owned it.

Please note: this will be my last post on this, and I can only hope our state employees at the top will treat our tax dollars as if they are spending money out of their own personal pocket, and not a bottomless pit that they constantly try to fill by taxing the hard working people of this state.

DuctTape 08-25-2020 03:10 PM

just a note, Hemlock and Canadice were owned by the City of Rochester. Prior much of thr surrounding land was private. To improve water quality, the city purchased the land and used eminent domain to acquire from unwilling sellers.

montcalm 08-25-2020 04:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cutbait (Post 282902)
Here's my suggestion that you may have missed from the first post: take the taxpayer money budgeted to advertise the NY outdoors - including the ADKs, and use it to hire more Rangers or increase education for those using the outdoors.

This is fine and dandy but I think the signage is targeted at a much larger citizen base. I also doubt the budget is very high (don't have the numbers really).

It may not occur to you, but there is a LARGE portion of NY residents who either don't know about the Adirondacks or have never been there. They still pay taxes. While I think the issue of preserving the park lies with our government, remember, we ARE the government. And sometimes people have to go above and beyond what government can provide in terms of resources to protect what they care about. This is often because we aren't the democratic majority and there are so many other issues trying to grab attention. I'd love to see what fraction of a fraction of a percent of our tax money goes to environmental issues (I'm talking cumulative over history).

I've seen this time and time again and can't echo enough how much not-for-profit, community based organizations have been, and will continue to lead these efforts for those who are concerned. The DEC is almost always willing to work with them, except in cases where they want development that is conflicting with protections of the Forest Preserve. In those cases it's a matter of the laborious process of amending the constitution and/or working changes into a UMP revision, depending on what is being proposed.

I follow and support a number of groups who do this, and our system is purposely set up to make it extremely difficult to make any major changes to Forest Preserve lands. Other lands have less and/or different restrictions. Fundamentally it goes to the idea that lands added into the Forest Preserve should return to primeval forests before the Adirondacks (and Catskills) were ravaged by the ax and fire.

I believe DT is correct about Candice and Hemlock history, and the City of Rochester still owns the dams which control water level. They also still have personnel who patrol the lakes.

vchops 08-28-2020 07:36 PM

I was there the first week of Aug and we took away and old rusty grill and rusty pliers. I heard about the fire from the Forest Ranger when we arrived. I didnít see him once after that. We were sure he would pop by to check on us but he didnít. We left some wood for the next group and also pulled a bunch of nails from the trees around the fire. The poor trees were hacked from axes and knives.

This was my first time there with my 16 year old son and cousin. I hope it sticks around and people gain some more respect for nature.

This is my first post, my name is Rob and Iím looking forward to hangin around :)

SteveSam 08-28-2020 08:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vchops (Post 282959)
I was there the first week of Aug and we took away and old rusty grill and rusty pliers. I heard about the fire from the Forest Ranger when we arrived. I didnít see him once after that. We were sure he would pop by to check on us but he didnít. We left some wood for the next group and also pulled a bunch of nails from the trees around the fire. The poor trees were hacked from axes and knives.

This was my first time there with my 16 year old son and cousin. I hope it sticks around and people gain some more respect for nature.

This is my first post, my name is Rob and Iím looking forward to hangin around :)

Welcome Rob! I hope you, your son, and cousin enjoyed your trip.

vchops 08-28-2020 09:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SteveSam (Post 282960)
Welcome Rob! I hope you, your son, and cousin enjoyed your trip.

Thanks, it was amazing, I fell in love and learned not to bring my Hobie PA12 🤪. I bought my first canoe LOL

Lucky13 09-01-2020 11:31 AM

The City also employed a watershed manager who had a staff who would patrol both lakes for swimmers, boats too big, etc. The manager looked at proposals in the watershed for development or road maintenance etc and insured that impact on water quality was minimized. Sort of like the Fulton Chain Association, but of course the watershed inspector had some clout and actually accomplished maintenance of drinking water quality for years, the FCA, not so much.

Hendrickson 09-26-2020 10:05 AM

I was the guy who had to evacuate in the middle of the night because of the fire on Spruce Island--along with my two young daughters. They have never been so scared in their lives.

There we were, getting ready to turn off the headlamps and crash, when we hear people screaming at us to get off the island. They had paddled across from their site when they saw the flames, and they warned us that it was moving fast. The smoke started coming into our site, and I sent my girls down to the canoe with our dog and told them to wait while I grabbed as much gear as I could. I lived in Southern California for several years, and I know how fast fires can move, especially when the ground is bone-dry (as it was around Lake Lila in early July). While my daughters implored me to move as fast as I could, real panic in their voices, I set a new world record for packing. Our watchful neighbors hung around and kept an eye on the kids while I threw everything into a pile in our boat. As we paddled into the dark, I saw that the flames were still far down at the other end of the island, and that we had had more time than I thought. But those flames were a good six feet high, and they were raging. I fully expected the island to be at least half-consumed by morning.

As it happened, the breeze died down a little while later, and the fire didn't travel much farther. But all it would have taken for the lives of two beautiful girls to be in real danger was a strong wind and a vacant campsite across the lake. If the conditions had been just a little worse and nobody had been there to warn us, we might not have known about the fire until it was nipping at our heels. We probably would have gotten out in time, but at the cost of our gear and their future sense of security in the woods.

My kids are too young to know the difference between a truly life-threatening emergency and a close call. They were terrified. Even though I did my best to make a snug camp for us at a nearby site that night, my older daughter couldn't sleep until dawn. She's a tough kid, and she was happy to spend another night on the lake. We've continued camping and paddling this summer, even though the evidence of bad behavior is everywhere. It's not like they were traumatized. But with all the awful stuff going on in the world right now, she didn't deserve to have her special trip to Lake Lila marred by this experience. The world is scary enough for a kid right now.

So, to whoever thought it was no big deal to have an illegal campfire at the north end of Spruce Island, or to shoot some bottle rockets into the woods, up yours.

montcalm 09-26-2020 01:40 PM

Man, what a story! Glad you got away safe Hendrickson. Also glad the fire did not entirely damage the Island.

I was having similar concerns earlier this summer when it seemed my neighbors were setting off fireworks every night and everything was tinder dry. Luckily they didn't set anything on fire but I was checking the yard before bed.

TrailBlaser 09-26-2020 02:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wldrns (Post 282535)
I have heard of cases wherein the ranger says "move your site now or get a fine". I do not know of any actual fines that have been imposed for the 150 foot rule, but I would not doubt that there have been some. I suppose a lot may depend on how egregious the violation is, in combination with other offenses noted at the site, not to mention how many other violations the ranger may have encountered on that day.

I do know of at least one case however, where a large group of friends on a guided trip exceeded the allowed max size of 8 persons in a wilderness area. They did split into two groups, each with a different guide, but they tried to travel and hang out as one large group instead of camping one mile apart per the regulation. The friends insisted on congregating together even though the guides knew they could not do so legally. They were politely warned by a ranger twice to split up. Caught the third time, each guide received a ticket for $100.

This summer I saw a group of 10 camped at a site on LTL. I had a friendly conversation with them and mentioned the rule. They said they didn't know about it and had camped there for 3 nights and no one else said anything to them. I don't know how they fit on that site. Considering there are ranger headquarters right there, I would say they are probably understaffed, over-stretched and have other fish to fry. I keep writing my State reps and re governor about increased funding for DEC rangers. I hope that whenever the State overcomes its budget problems, they will address it. Until then I expect to see these and other issues continue.

TCD 09-26-2020 03:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrailBlaser (Post 283490)
I keep writing my State reps and re governor about increased funding for DEC rangers. I hope that whenever the State overcomes its budget problems, they will address it. Until then I expect to see these and other issues continue.

Albany has stubbornly refused to hire the necessary number of Rangers since long before the current budget problem. It has nothing to do with the budget; Albany has just decided this is how they want to manage the area.

If Covid disappeared tomorrow, and if Bill Gates gave the state $10 Billion out of the goodness of his heart to eliminate the budget gap, we would not get any additional Rangers.

forest dweller 09-28-2020 10:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jam66 (Post 282503)
This past July I was fortunate to take 2 trips to Lake Lila. I camped on Lila for a few nights the second week of July with my wife and son until the Horse Flies got the best of them. The last week of July, myself and a long time coworker camped on Lila for 3 nights. I first sank my toes into the sandy beach at the ďput inĒ over 25 years ago.
While itís one of my favorite places , itís also becoming a favorite place of uninformed, ignorant and very selfish campers.
On my first trip this year, as we launched , my wife commented about the large amount of white smoke coming from Spruce Island. As we paddled closer, it was apparent that there was a forest fire on the west end of the island. A later conversation with a camper , who evacuated during the middle of the night confirmed this. Luckily he was awoken by a fellow camper across the way at a nearby site. Also spoke with an Assistant Ranger who said either fireworks or a rogue campfire started this. Is was put out with portable pumps and hoses..
On my second trip we took one of the open sandy beach sites. The fire pit was ripped apart and had been extended onto the ďhollow groundĒ. There were fish carcasses, cigarette butts and a paper plate in the fire. The site was littered with live tree branches, many small trees and been slashed with an axe and several smaller live trees were cut down. I also picked up many butts out of the water. Last several trips before this year there were also met with nighttime fireworks and drunken yelling during the night.
My concern is that my son will not experience the same place with his son that I did 25 years ago. This year with COVID, Im sure more people have flocked to more remote places. I realize that Rangers canít police every site in the Adirondacks but how do we stop this behavior?

What, would you say about 10% of people don't realize that recently cut green trees don't burn...and cutting the trees makes the area less beautiful than it was before they cut them? I think we need to have an IQ test for voting...and for allowing people to camp in the forest preserve.


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