Goodbye to Summer 2019
Yesterday we put the Boat Decon Station in Severance to bed for the winter. With that, SLA’s most visible outdoor activities end until spring. But like Mother Nature many critical things are happening while the snow flies. The cold weather also gives us time to reflect on the past year’s accomplishments and plan and work toward even better things in 2020.
2019 was a very significant year. It started with a revitalization of all we had been doing to protect and improve our Watershed. The significant level of shared responsibility with the Paradox Lake Association (PLA) and East Shore Schroon Lake Association (ESSLA) has created a lasting structure to defend the waters we love. PLA continues to share responsibility with us of the Severance Boat Decon station and ESSLA joined with us in a broad testing program for bacteria and lake quality. Both organizations have partnered with us in sponsoring and conducting our third annual educational program, this year on our fishery. We also worked together on creating an addendum to our Watershed Management Plan and in securing a record sized grant for removing and preventing the spread of invasives in our watershed. This gives a proof of the impact of our actions and a basis for seeking grants and state action. As part of the ALA we have bolstered the invasive fight state wide, including the placement of invasive decon stations north of Exit 17 on the Northway.
As a result:
- Our watershed is again having our 26th year of testing water quality.
- Over two decades of bacteria testing is continuing with multiple sampling each year around the lakes
- Boat Decon and Boat Launch Inspection Stations were run 12 hours a day 7 days a week at three locations in the Watershed. They resulted in catching invasives from coming into our watershed including zebra mussels, water chestnuts and milfoil
- Extensive invasives recon both on and underwater was conducted with both volunteers and paid professionals
- Removal and destruction of a substantial amount of milfoil and curly leaf pond weed (our only invasives) was done professionally using that recon
- Our watershed has stayed at a maintenance level for Eurasian milfoil- making us the envy of most lakes in the Adirondacks
- There have been multiple educational programs and events throughout the spring and summer for area residents and visitors
- We have hired, trained and engaged a whole new generation of Adirondack Residents as Stewards on our programs
- We have drafted and begun a whole series of efforts to protect and improve our Watershed
- We have hosted a series of social and community based gatherings bringing folks together around environmental issues
- We have hired wonderful and top notch experts to help us preserve and protect our Watershed
This year the SLA with the help of Cloud Splitter Foundation, and the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP), has begun the process of mapping the bottom of Schroon Lake. This process will result in:
- Having an accurate map of the lake bottom, old maps are not accurate
- Determine shallow areas where we should test for invasives
- Creating a good record for sediments coming through inflow into the lakes
- Determine how much of the lake bottom is covered with recent sediments
- Create a record of lake depth and sediment flow
- Determine and keep a record of plant growth around the watershed
- Track the effects of invasive harvesting on our Watershed
We hope to finish this program for all of Schroon in 2020 and move on to Paradox. All shallow areas in the northern basin in Schroon and some of the southern basin have been mapped. We have also mapped many other “problem areas” where invasives have been spotted. This has involved scores of hours of volunteer work along with thousands of dollars in equipment, profession divers and expert support. We hope you will help us financially and by volunteer support in 2020. We hope to eventually create a bottom map which we will sell to raise money for our programs.
The above is your dues and donations at work. Please remember this summary when we ask you to renew and re-pledge in 2020. Many thanks for your continuing generosity and for the support and hard work of our Board and Members.
On a lighter note, we invite you to our Fall Party Saturday October 26th from 2 to 5 pm at Trail Break (formerly Drakes) on Route 9, north of Schroon and everyone is invited. There will be free hor d’oeuvres a cash bar. Please RSVP to the evite you received to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you and have a great and safe Fall Season.
Mark S. Granger, President SLA