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For Release: Wednesday, July 31, 2019

DEC Completes Sustainable Trail Improvements in Wilcox Lake Wild Forest

250-Foot Stretch of Murphy-Middle-Bennet Trail Rehabilitated

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced that a 250-foot section of trail has been rehabilitated along the Murphy-Middle-Bennett Trail in Wilcox Wild Forest, town of Wells, Hamilton County. This project is part of the Adventure NY Initiative to connect New Yorkers with the outdoors.

"DEC is pleased to announce the use of sustainable practices to rehabilitate this portion of trail," said Regional Director Bob Stegemann. "Users are now able to enjoy this scenic trail responsibly and safely. These improvements, through Governor Cuomo's Adventure NY Initiative, are another example of the State's ongoing effort to grow the outdoor recreation economy of Adirondack communities while protecting this resource for future generations. I am grateful to the partners and volunteers who worked alongside DEC staff to complete this project."

DEC staff, backcountry stewards, and volunteers from the Velo Bicycle Club and the community spent four days rehabilitating the section of trail using sustainable practices to create a durable and hardened trail surface for multi-use recreation. DEC used the existing corduroy surface as the foundation for the crushed stone turnpike built on top of it.

The 6.8-mile Murphy-Middle-Bennett trail accesses Murphy Lake and features three picturesque ponds along the trail, as well as camping opportunities, including a lean-to at Murphy Lake. It is part of a network of 92 miles of trails in the Wilcox Lake Wild Forest. The trail is also a designated route along the more than 550-mile Adirondack Trail Ride (leaves DEC's website), a solo, self-supported bike-packing adventure through the Adirondack Mountains.

Wilcox Lake Wild Forest, located in the southeastern Adirondacks, is comprised of approximately 125,000 acres of Adirondack Forest Preserve lands in Fulton, Hamilton, Saratoga, and Warren counties. There are 92 miles of marked trails, 63 primitive campsites, and four lean-tos available for recreational opportunities in the wild forest. Users are encouraged to practice Leave No Trace (leaves DEC's website) principles when recreating in the Adirondacks to enjoy the outdoors responsibly and minimize impact on natural resources.

Under Governor Cuomo's Adventure NY Initiative, DEC is making strategic investments to expand access to healthy, active outdoor recreation, connect more New Yorkers and visitors to nature and the outdoors, protect natural resources, and boost local economies. This initiative is supporting 75 projects over three years with many more to come, ranging from improvements to youth camps and environmental education centers to new boat launches, duck blinds, and hiking trails. Click here to learn more about Adventure NY. For more information on planning an outdoor adventure in New York State, visit DEC's website.

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