2019 Northeastern Alpine Stewardship Gathering Program


11th Northeastern Alpine Stewardship Gathering

October 25-27, 2019

High Peaks Resort, Lake Placid, NY

Draft Program

Friday, October 25th

4:00 pm - Registration Opens

5:00 pm - Social - Poster viewing/tabling with hors d'oeuvres

7:00 pm - Welcoming Remarks - Seth Jones, ADK's Education Director, Ryan Harvey, President of The Waterman Fund

7:30 pm - Opening Speaker: From Here to Patagonia: Wilderness, Wildness, and the Call of the Mountains - Tom Butler

In a time when most of the action in contemporary environmentalism is focused on climate change and renewable energy, does the idea of wilderness have any relevance? Tom Butler, vice president for conservation advocacy for Tompkins Conservation, which has helped protect more than 14 million acres of new and expanded national parks in South America, argues YES!  In this illustrated presentation, he’ll present photos from the Adirondack Park to Patagonia while exploring the history of wildlands conservation, and ponder the prospects for a potentially resurgent global wilderness movement that seeks to rewild the Earth.

Tom Butler is the vice president for conservation advocacy for Tompkins Conservation and past board president of Northeast Wilderness Trust, a regional land trust. A conservationist and writer, his books include Wildlands Philanthropy, Plundering Appalachia, Protecting the Wild, and Energy: Overdevelopment and the Delusion of Endless Growth. His book Overdevelopment, Overpopulation, Overshoot (“OVER” for short), is a photo-format volume depicting how human numbers and behavior are transforming the Earth. Butler co-curated the 2017 exhibit, “Douglas R. Tompkins: On Beauty” at the David Brower Center in Berkeley and coauthored the companion book On Beauty: Douglas R. Tompkins—Aesthetics and Activism, about the way that beauty was an animating force in the life and work of Doug Tompkins, founder of Tompkins Conservation.

Saturday, October 26th

7:30 am - Registration Opens

8:30 am - Opening Remarks - NYS DEC

8:45 am - Plenary Session: Alpine Research - Moderator, Seth Jones, ADK's Education Director

  • Monitoring Plant Populations in the Adirondack Alpine. (Tim Howard, New York Natural Heritage Program; Kayla White, Adirondack Mountain Club; Julia Goren, Adirondack Council)
  • Common Garden Experiments in the Northeast Alpine: Recent History and Research Priorities. (Kevin Berend, Tetra Tech; Kirsten Haynes, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry; Caitlin McDonough-MacKenzie, University of Maine)
  • Ecological Change and Monitoring on Monroe Flats, N.H. 1819-2018 (Charles Cogbill, Beyond Ktaadn and Harvard Forest)
  • Genomic Insights into the Conservation of Northeast Alpine Rattlesnake-roots (Nabalus spp.). (Kristen Haynes)
  • Toward a Flora of Uapishka – Les Monts Groulx, Quebec. (Matt Peters, Independent Botanist and Ecologist)
  • Collection and Documentation of New York’s Rare Alpine Plants - Past, Present, and Future. (Steve Young, New York Natural Heritage Program)

10:30 am – Networking Break & Tabling

11:20 am – Plenary Session: Stewardship & Visitor Use– Moderator: Kayla White, ADK’s Summit Steward Coordinator

  • A Community of Practice Looks Back and Ahead: The Alpine Stewardship Activities in the Northeast Project (ASANE) at 10 Years. (Dr. Jill Weiss, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry)
  • Fifty Years of Alpine Conservation and Stewardship Along the Ridgeline of Mount Mansfield, Vermont. (Rick Paradis, Director Emeritus of the Natural Areas Center and Lecturer Emeritus, University of Vermont)
  • A New Wave of Hikers: has the Franconia Ridge Alpine Zone Reached its Carrying Capacity? (Nat Scrimshaw, Appalachian Trail Conservancy)
  • A New Collaborative Approach to Trailwork on Crawford Path. (Matt Coughlan, White Mountain Trail Collective)

12:30 pm – Lunch – Poster Viewing

1:30 pm – Panel Discussion: Managing High Use & Wildness– Moderator: Ryan Harvey, President of The Waterman Fund

2:30 pm – Networking Break

3:15 pm – Plenary Session: Climate Change & Monitoring – Moderator: Bill Martin, Adirondack Chapter of The Nature Conservancy

  • On Wilderness: Rethinking Climate Crisis. (David Crews, Fellow with Northeast Wilderness Trust)
  • Mountain Watch meets iNaturalist; Blossoming Citizen Science with Smartphones. (Doug Weihrauch, Appalachian Mountain Club Research Department)
  • Alpine Plant Communities of the White Mountains of New Hampshire: Aboveground Plant Diversity and Abundance Correlated to Belowground Factors. (Timothy Maddalena-Lucey, Antioch University New England)

4:00 pm – Break

4:15 pm – Plenary Session: Sharing Out: Alpine Stewardship in the Northeast– Moderator: Julia Goren, Adirondack Council

  • Dispatches from the Field: Updates on Stewardship Activities in the Northeast

5:15 pm – Social – Poster viewing/ Tabling

6:00 pm – Dinner

7:00 pm – Guy Waterman Alpine Steward Award & Emerging Alpine Steward Award. Presented by Ryan Harvey, President of The Waterman Fund and Laura Waterman

7:30 pm - Keynote Address: Our Shared Public Lands: How Leave No Trace is Addressing Increasing Impacts for a Sustainable Future - Ben Lawhon

Guy and Laura Waterman wrote in their 1979 book Backcountry Ethics, “What we should seek and must, if we are to pass along to the next generation the privileges and pleasures we’ve enjoyed, is the demands that accompany freedom inevitably: to respect the place where we are, to try to understand its processes, to think about the effect of our presence and to act responsibly to minimize that effect, and to preserve the mountain world.” There words rang true 40 years ago, and ring just as true today (if not more so) if we are to collectively enjoy the outdoors sustainably for generations to come.

Recreational use of our shared public lands is increasing exponentially – that much is clear. With that increased use comes increased impacts. Though some of those impacts are unavoidable, most are entirely avoidable. However, most people venturing outside are ill-equipped with the basic Leave No Trace skills to minimize their individual but cumulative impact on the places they visit. Join Ben Lawhon, Education Director for the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics to learn about how Leave No Trace is being used effectively to address impacts from recreation across the country.

This presentation will present the effects of recreation, while also exploring some of the modern drivers of increased recreation on public lands. Additionally, specific case studies will be examined where Leave No Trace is making a real difference for both the land and the people recreating there. This presentation will also show how cutting-edge research is informing Leave No Trace education, outreach, and training. Lastly, the transferability of specific tactics for effectively educating the recreating public will be examined in order to provide tangible solutions for meeting the current challenges faced by our shared public lands.

Ben Lawhon joined the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics staff in 2001 where he serves as the Education Director. His current responsibilities include research, curriculum development, management of national education and training programs, agency relations, and oversight of national outreach efforts. Previously he worked as the Associate Regional Representative for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in Asheville, North Carolina. While with ATC he was responsible for trail management, volunteer training, oversight of numerous regional programs and trail crews, and federal agency relationships. He has also worked as an American Canoe Association whitewater-kayak and swiftwater rescue instructor. Ben has served on numerous national and regional non-profit boards. He has a B.S. in Natural Resources Management from the University of Tennessee and an M.S. in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources from Colorado State University. Ben is an avid outdoor enthusiast, spending as much time as possible in our wild spaces.

Sunday, October 27th

8:30 am – Field Trips (can sign up at registration desk at the Gathering)

  • ASRC Whiteface Mountain Field Station & Alpine Zone
  • Wright Peak with Adirondack High Peaks Summit Stewards
  • Addressing High Use: New Trail Up Cascade with NYSDEC
  • Boreal Bog Boardwalk at Paul Smith’s VIC
  • Driving Down Rt-73: Managing Parking

Lunch: Bag lunches will be provided.

  • Emergence of a New Chemical Regime: Growing Abundance of Water Soluble Organics in Cloud Water Associated with a Growing Ion Imbalance. (Paul Casson, Sara Lance, Christopher Lawrence, Jim Schwab, Richard Brandt, Dan Kelting, Elizabeth Yerger, Hunter Favreau)
  • Monitoring of Vegetation Impact Due to Trampling on Cadillac Mountain Summit Using High Spatial Resolution Remote Sensing Data: Part II. (Min Kook Kim)
  • Population Genetic Structure of the Flowering Plant Diapensia lapponica (Diapensiaceae) in the Northeastern Alpine Zone. (Katherine Martinez Munoz, Sean C. Robinson, Hannah Vollmer, Bob Popp)
  • Alpine Pollinator Guilds of the Adirondack High Peaks. (Troy Tetreault, Michael B. Burgess)
  • Hurricane Mt. Fire Tower for 100 Years, Protecting the Adirondack Forest Then and Now. (Peter Slocum, Mary Jean Bland)