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July 2013 Outdoor Discovery

DEC Outdoor Discovery is published by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.

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Three people sitting on the edge of a peak overlooking Lake George.


New York State has wonderful recreational opportunities which will be highlighted for you each month. Get ready to start planning your next adventure!

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Closeup of a cecropia moth.

Check out the June 2013 Conservationist to read about banding geese, catching big fish, huting mushrooms, where to watch wildlife, and to find out what's shown in the picture above. (We'll give you a hint: look at page 31.) Subscribe online or call 1-800-678-6399

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DEC Events

Select Recreation Events
Black Sea Bass Fishing Season Opens - 7/10
Lakeside Fishing Clinic at Lake Ronkonkoma - 7/10
Introduction to Geocaching at Reinstein Woods EEC - 7/11
Hudson River Days - 7/20-21
See more upcoming events

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Nature Notes

A fisherman holding a large Fluke.

Fluke can weigh up to 26 pounds and can grow as long as 37 inches. The New York record for summer flounder, caught in 1975, is 22 pounds 7 ounces. Very big fluke are sometimes called "door mats" because of their size.

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Safe and Sound

Storm clouds over Lake George.

Lake George's long narrow shape makes it susceptible to hard winds and fast storms. Be aware of weather warnings, and get off the water if bad weather threatens.

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Featured Video

Campsite on one of the Saranac Lake Islands.

If you want an even more remote camping experience, try the Saranac Islands. Learn about this serene camping experience on DEC TV.

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Explore for FREE

You can explore many state lands free of charge. However, some state campgrounds and day-use areas charge a small fee, depending on the season (campsite rentals extra).

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Let Us Know

We hope you enjoy this newsletter and will share your favorite hiking spot, recreation activity or outdoor tip with us. Your feedback is always welcome.
E-mail us

If you like this newsletter, please forward it to your friends.

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Photo Credits

Banner: Carl Heilman II
Lake George aerial: Frederic Chase
Storm clouds: PhilaSilva(flickr)
Bluebird: Sue Shafer
Hike-a-thon: NE Extreme Adventure Club
Large Bass: Ryan Coulter
Flounder: fishwatch.gov

First Annual Adirondack Challenge

Remember the First Annual Adirondack Challenge is July 21, 2013 in Indian Lake. The Adirondack Challenge is a day-long festival with food, music and two water races-an invitational whitewater event and an international flatwater paddling competition.

For more information check out I Love NY's Adirondack Challenge webpage.

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Canoe Camping at the Lake George Islands

Aerial photo of the Lake George Islands.

Lake George Islands campsites are spread across much of the lake and are accessible only by boat. These campsites are divided into three groups-Glen Island, in the Narrows east of Bolton Landing; Long Island, on the south end of the lake; and Narrow Island, part of the Mother Bunch, located in the northern part of the lake.

The Glen Island group has more than 150 sites for camping; the Long Island group has 90 sites; and the Narrow Island group has 85 sites. Most are well forested and private, and all sites have a fireplace, picnic table, shared toilet facility and a dock for one boat. Two wheelchair-accessible campsites have tent platforms and level trails with a natural surface. When selecting a site, keep in mind the kind of vessel you will be using. Canoes are fine near the shoreline, but sturdier vessels are recommended for boating in the middle of Lake George. You will need a Lake George boat permit for a motor boat.

Each group of islands has its own headquarters to make registration more convenient. After choosing a site, you must park at and launch from a private marina (a fee is usually charged).

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Lake George Hike-a-thon

A hiker looking out at Lake George.

Join in a 25th birthday celebration and hike some of the most beautiful spots around Lake George. The Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) is turning 25 and is holding a Hike-a-Thon on Friday, July 5 to commemorate this milestone. Hikes varying in length and difficulty will be held at each of the LGLC's eight parks and preserves. The Hike-a-Thon is free and open to the public. To register, call 518-644-9673 or e-mail the LGLC.

In addition to a great day of hiking, participants will receive a t-shirt and an aerial photo of their group.

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Saltwater Fishing in New York

A person holding a large sea bass.

It's that time of year when the marine waters of New York State start teeming again with life. Whether you're a novice angler or an avid saltwater sportsman or woman, you're probably anxious to wet a line and enjoy the outdoors. Luckily, New York offers exciting fishing opportunities for recreational anglers in pursuit of striped bass, bluefish, summer flounder, sea bass, scup, blackfish and other species. Numerous public access points on the state's marine waters include public piers, beaches, four-wheel-drive trails and boat ramps.

New York's non-commercial anglers can now document their fishing activities, compile their fishing data and plan fishing trips by participating in a voluntary online angler logbook-eLogbook. Before going fishing, be sure to enroll in the free Recreational Marine Fishing Registry and to check the fishing season and catch limit for your targeted catch.

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Watchable Wildlife: Five Rivers Environmental Education Center

A bluebird sitting on a branch.

Five Rivers is one of the best places in the Capital District to see a wonderful variety of wild birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles and insects. For great summertime viewing, spend the early morning or pre-sunset hours traversing the center's more than 450 acres of fields, forests, ponds, streams and marsh habitats on 10 miles of well-kept trails, two of them specially designed for people with mobility limitations.

During the heat of midday, enjoy a relaxing picnic in the shade, or visit the air-conditioned education building with its dozens of intriguing exhibits, including several live animals that can't be returned to the wild.

Participating in fun programs and tours throughout the summer will leave you with many memorable vacation moments.

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Hike of the Month - Swallow-Hollow Trail at Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge

Swallow-Hollow Trail at Iroquois NWR.

One of the best ways to experience the different habitats and wildlife in the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge is by hiking the Swallow-Hollow Nature Trail. Recently restored as part of a $40,000 grant, the 1.3-mile loop takes visitors through evergreen plantations, marshes and forested wetlands. The surface is a combination of elevated boardwalk and gravel trail, with interpretive panels along the way.

During spring and summer, this trail is one of the better spots for viewing a wide variety of mammals, reptiles, amphibians and, of course, birds found in the refuge. Virginia rail, cerulean warbler and red-headed woodpecker are just a few of the many birds that can be seen here.


July 2013 DEC Outdoor Discovery Newsletter © New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

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