Highway Snowbanks

We drove over to Mountain View today, to get ethanol-free gas and to have lunch, both at Belly’s.  It was hopping.  About forty sleds in the parking lot.

When we hit the Town of Duane, their highway department had cut back all of the snowbanks along the roads, making room for more snow, and improving visibilty.  In contrast, the snow banks along the roads in the Town of Franklin had not been touched.  The roads were narrow, with towering snowbanks along side.

I probably would not have noticed, but the visible difference on Route 26 was very apparent.

I should mention, the burger and raspberry/blueberry pie at Belly’s were both great.

Weekend Update, February 27th

It is still cold here.  Zero, this morning.  Excellent snow pack.

It is the weekend of the Lake Colby Fishing Derby.  Northern Pike caught anywhere can be entered.  Wonder if we will see folks out on Lake again, this year?  Ice is about 30 inches thick, with about 24 – 30 inches of snow on top.  Hard to  move around.  It has been so cold that very little, if any, slush has formed where the ice and snow meet.

It is quiet here for us this weekend.  Last week we had kids, all the grandkids, grandkid-cousins and sheer bedlam.  The boys helped restock the fireplace wood.  But both managed to get stuck leaving.  I finally had to unpackage the tow strap I have been carrying around for about 20 years.  Why don’t people get snow tires?  At least we know now what they will get for Christmas this year.

We plan on spending most of the day outside.  Snowshoeing, snow mobiling, working the dogs.  It is the last day of grouse season, but we have too much snow in the woods to effectively hunt.  If you like Winter, today should be a perfect day.

Update:  there is a well established cross country ski track around the perimeter of the lake (except where it has been windblown).  It was nice to see someone else had been using the snowshoe trail I have been making.  Easy access across from Lakeview, Upper Bass Pond Road (just past and across from the Korn camp) and from the jeep trail on the curve across and above the Red Loon.

Weekend Update, February 20th

We have been having a stretch of phenomenal weather here at the lake. Yes, it was 30 below with the wind this morning, but that did not keep us from going out. It os mow 2 degrees, sunny and windy.

The snow in the woods is about 3 to 4 feet deep. We have been establishing many snowshoe routes through the woods. There is too much snow on the lake for snowmobiling, and I have seen only one solitary ice fisherman this year.

Snowmobiling is excellent; all trails are open and groomed. I imagine we will hear lots of sleds Saturday and Sunday.

I think the grouse hunting is done for the season. Too much snow. I have seen some friends out rabbit hunting with their beagles.

We have had two infants (both under two months) visiting. It has been hard keeping the heat up in the house. The wood stove and fireplace have been going non-stop. The older grandkids arrive tonight.

Valentine’s Day Update

We are in the middle of a classic old-time Winter!

This is the last weekend of the Winter Festival in Saranac Lake. The parade, always an awesome event, is later today.

We have around 3 feet of snow on the ground. It should warm up to the teens today.

Sunday night– temperatures will drop to 20 below, with a wind chill warning for as low as 45 below. Pay attention to your pets when they are outside.

There is a good 18 inches of snow on top of the lake ice. Too deep for my aged snowmobiles. Too deep to ski or skate. Good for snowshoes.

Forecast

Well, we have an excellent snow base at the Lake. Mid February is a great time for outdoor activities. It stays light a little longer, the Sun seems brighter and usually I switch to lighter Winter boots.

As I look at the forecast for the upcoming weekend, the predicted temperatures on Sunday caught my eye. The high is -7. The low is -17. I think I will keep the heavy boots available.

We will be prepping the camp– all four grand kids are coming next week. First visit to the lake of our 6 week old Grandson. Need to create the bobsled run down to the lake, and clear the ice for skating. If I forget the DVD of Frozen, I will be in trouble.

More on Mineral Rights

So it seems that Champlain Gas and Oil is in litigation with Lyme Timber over mineral rights.  The State is involved, as it purchased a conservation easement on these lands.

Although the NYSDEC Lands and Forests and Minerals folks may concede that Champlain Gas may possibly have acquired the mineral rights, the State does not seemed too concerned.  Practically, the APA would be hard-pressed to issue a permit allowing for subsurface mining.   This sort of mining would not be cost-effective.  Consensus is that Champlain Gas is seeking to leverage some cash out of the State in exchange for extinguishing its mineral rights.  The State is not buying this.

Neither is Lyme Timber. They have retained Bob Alessi, an Albany-based attorney to represent them.  I have known and worked with Bob on land use and energy matters for the past 25 years.  I am confident he will aggressively  litigate this issue.