WARRENSBURG, NY—January 28, 2016—The Open Space Institute (OSI) today announced the acquisition of 836 acres of scenic land in the heart of Lake George Wild Forest. A high priority acquisition in the region for decades, the land was secured by OSI at the request of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and will eventually enhance public recreation in the region’s beloved network of preserved lands.
Situated in southeastern Adirondack Park, the property—known as “Huckleberry Mountain Forest”—is a key inholding within the Lake George Wild Forest. Consisting of unimproved and wooded terrain, the property also features a high plateau overlook of the surrounding mountains and the Hudson River, which lies 500 feet to the west.
“OSI is delighted to continue our commitment to the Adirondack Park, an international treasure right here in New York State,” said Kim Elliman, OSI’s President and CEO. “The Huckleberry Mountain Forest property will ensure the preservation of beautiful scenery and buffer the Hudson River, while keeping the land in the hands of the public. This project represents the best type of land protection made possible by the state’s Environmental Protection Fund.”
DEC Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “Preserving land in the Adirondack Park has significant benefits for both the environment as well as the regional economy. The Huckleberry Mountain Forest will offer outstanding recreational opportunities for hiking, camping, sightseeing and fishing, and I applaud OSI for their work in preserving such a valuable natural resource. DEC looks forward to working with OSI to preserve this remarkable area while creating access for New Yorkers and visitors to explore the beauty of the Lake George Wild Forest.”
Looking ahead, it is expected that OSI will hold onto the new land for approximately three years until DEC acquires it, with funding provided by the New York State Environmental Protection Fund.
Running through the southeastern Adirondacks, the Lake George Wild Forest consists of approximately 71,133 acres of State Forest Preserve lands with miles of marked trails available to explore. These trails allow the public to easily access a variety of majestic natural attractions such as Black Mountain, Shelving Rock, and Prospect Mountain.
Recreationists also enjoy year-round activities on Lake George, and at popular fishing and camping locations. A popular area for motorized recreational uses and ice fishing, the Lake George Wild Forest serves as an important link with the adjoining snowmobile trail network.
Throughout its 40-year existence, OSI has had a long history of conservation in the Adirondacks, conserving more than 32,000 acres in the region, through more than 37 conservation successes. Examples include nearly doubling Moreau Lake State Park and protecting significant watershed lands and river frontage along the Hudson River.