The occasion is treated by both the state and various Adirondack stewardship groups as an opportunity to educate locals and visitors alike on how to take better care of the 6-million-acre Adirondack Park while enjoying its trails and water bodies.
Tammara Van Ryn, of the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP), says that in ideal circumstances, fighting invasive species comes down to prevention.
That’s because, once they’re here – like the Emerald Ash Borer and Hemlock Woolly Adelgid have been since sightings as recent as last year – the challenge changes to controlling the spread.
To that end, this year APIPP is pushing a new campaign to advise campers against moving firewood around while in the Adirondacks – especially if it’s wood they cut down.
That’s because the transportation of firewood is a chief travel method for the eggs of the Emerald Ash Borer, which was found along the Schroon River last August.
APIPP is also hosting an instructional seminar on Wednesday, to teach paddle boaters about the importance of keeping boats clean of milfoil, hydrilla and other aquatic plant invasives that are commonly transferred to new water bodies by boat.
The state of New York requires boats to visit washing stations, like the one at the rest stop at Northway Exit 18, before entering park-protected water bodies like Lake George.
Whether that will stay the case, though, is another matter. A bill that would extend that practice is up for voting in the state legislature this week.