Showing posts from August 7, 2016

Easy Adirondack Hikes: Hurricane Mountain Fire Tower (Elizabethtown NY)

Hurricane Mountain  Elevation = 3,694'   Vertical ascent = 2,000' Distance = 2.6 miles Hurricane Mountain, located in Essex County, has a solid rock summit and 360º view. It's most known for its fire tower that was first built in 1909. That wooden structure was replaced in 1919 with the current 35' Aermoto LS-40 tower and 7'x7' metal cab.  There had been quite a lot of controversy regarding whether the fire tower should be repaired or maintained, but in 2014 New York State approved the plan to restore public access to the Hurricane Fire tower. Now in 2016, the fire tower is open, thanks to the Friends of Hurricane Mountain and other volunteers.  There are three different approaches for this mountain. Coming from the Rt. 9N approach, this hike gains very little elevation for the first mile.  After signing in at the register, the path follows an old road that weaves through wooded areas, crossing plank walkways over marshy areas.  After passing cr

Smokey Bear's Connection to World War II and Disney's Bambi

Smokey the Bear, the iconic American symbol for forest fire prevention, actually was preceded by an earlier fire prevention strategy. President Franklin D. Roosevelt first started a fire prevention campaign when millions of acres of National Forest were being lost due to careless people. The campaign started with Uncle Sam and took a r eligious turn before tapping into the war movement. When Japanese planes attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, and Japanese submarines fired shells exploding a Santa Barbara, California oil field - the war was brought to American soil. With young men and experienced firefighters enlisted in the war and stationed away from the home front, fear grew that these attacks would continue to destroy lives, property and National Forests.  Citizens were encouraged to take a personal interest in fire prevention and organize community prevention efforts. With the success of Disney's 5th animated movie, Bambi, the fire prevention campaign shifts