Watershed Stewards are back on duty, greeting boaters entering Upper Saranac Lake at Back Bay.
These trained stewards will perform free aquatic invasive species (AIS) inspections of watercraft entering and exiting the lake. Vessels and equipment that have the potential to spread AIS will be decontaminated. Stewards will also work to increase awareness of the environmental hazards introduced by invasives and inform boaters of how they can stop their spread.
When Fish Creek Campground reopens, additional stewards will be stationed at the campground launch. Stewards will continue watercraft inspection seven days per week throughout the summer and on weekends until Columbus Day.
In 2019, the Upper Saranac Watershed Stewards inspected 4,179 watercraft, educated 8,229 visitors, and intercepted 20 watercraft carrying AIS.
In addition to Upper Saranac Lake, there are numerous decontamination stations located around the Adirondack Park providing opportunities to have boats cleaned. Boaters who will be visiting the Adirondacks over the summer are encouraged to utilize this free service prior to getting to their final destination. Locations and hours of operation for boat wash stations can be found at adkcleanboats.com.
One of the most prominent inspection and decontamination stations is located at a critical entrance to the Adirondack Park: Interstate 87 at the Adirondack Welcome Center rest stop in Queensbury. According to the Adirondack Council, nearly 90% of boats heading into the Adirondacks bypassed this inspection station over the Memorial Day weekend.
Funding for the Upper Saranac Lake Watershed Stewards comes from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) Adirondack Park-wide Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Program and from donations to the Upper Saranac Foundation. Visit our website to learn more: usfoundation.net.