2017 May 09

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Albany Corning Preserve
Albany, NY
Criminal Justice
Ferd's Bog
Gilboa, New York
Rogers Environmental Education Center
State Land Use Policies
Thirteenth Lake
Washington Park

May 2017
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Good evening! Mostly cloudy and 44 degrees in Delmar, NY. There is a northwest breeze at 5 mph. The skies will clear tomorrow around 3 am. Kind of a rather chilly evening for the second week of May. The windows are closed tonight. 

Got out of work relatively early but the buses were running a bit late from the residual delays from the annual police march, but I made it home early enough for a quick dinner and walk down to the library for a while. Then I went to the store and bought some soap, orange juice and several types of waffle mix. I always enjoy my waffles in the morning and it’s a while since I’ve had waffles. Lately it’s been more eggs but it’s more work to make them up and then clean the pan compared to just making waffles. And I got the soap I really needed. 

Tonight will have patchy frost after 2am. Otherwise, mostly cloudy, with a low of 38 degrees at 4am. Eight degrees below normal. Northwest wind 3 to 5 mph. In 2016, it got down to 34 degrees with mostly cloudy skies. The record low of 28 occurred back in 1958.

Waxing Gibbous Moon tonight with 96% illuminated. The moon will set around 6:22 am. The Full “Flower” Moon will be tomorrow with partly cloudy skies expected. The sun will rise at 5:38 am with the first light at 5:06 am, which is one minute and 10 seconds earlier than yesterday. Tonight will have 9 hours and 31 minutes of darkness, a decrease of 2 minutes and 14 seconds over last night.

Tomorrow will have patchy frost before 9am. Otherwise, mostly sunny, with a high of 60 degrees at 4pm. Seven degrees below normal. North wind around 8 mph. A nice change even if unseasonably cold. A year ago, we had mostly cloudy skies and a high of 69 degrees. The record high of 92 was set in 1970. 5 inches of snow fell back in 1945.

Not a particularly nice weekend on tap. Saturday, rain likely. Cloudy, with a high near 61. Chance of precipitation is 70%. Maximum dew point of 48 at 1pm. Sunday, rain likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 57. Chance of precipitation is 60%. Typical average high for the weekend is 69 degrees.

I don’t think I will be heading camping this weekend and next weekend is the Lupine Festival which I will be manning the Save the Pine Bush display, assuming that I don’t end up working the job that pays the bills. So I suspect that I won’t get out camping until Memorial Day Weekend. Hopefully we will have good weather for that. I am still thinking about Vermont that weekend. Then probably the next nice weekend to Pisceo Powley Road and Charles Baker State Forest in Madison County. At this point I’m just focusing on the end of black fly season when the pools and the beaches are open again.  

In four weeks on June 6 the sun will be setting at 8:30 pm, which is 25 minutes and 25 seconds later then tonight. In 2016 on that day, we had mostly cloudy skies and temperatures between 83 and 59 degrees. Typically, you have temperatures between 75 and 54 degrees. The record high of 94 degrees was set back in 1925.

Looking ahead, Average High is 70 is Next Tuesday, 8:30 PM Sunset is in 4 weeks, Strawberry Moon is in 1 months, Independence Day is in 8 weeks, Buck Moon is in 2 months, August 1st is in 12 weeks, Altamont Fair Opens is in 14 weeks, Columbus Day is in 5 months, Friday the 13th (October) is in 21 weeks, Election Day 2017 is in 26 weeks, Average High is 40 is in 27 weeks, Election Day 2018 is in 78 weeks and Election Day 2020 is in 182 weeks.

Sitting back watching the PBS Newshour and just mulling over the days events. Most don’t really impact me but I’m still not crazy about where things are both going in our state or country. Eventually I’ll move to a low tax, laid back state where government isn’t such a big part of life and I won’t worry about all this crap. That said, if I fall off a four wheeler or have an accident cutting firewood or working on a tractor, I sure hope I have access to affordable health care. 

I saw a big protest in front of Congressman Fatso’s fundraiser at the University Club. I’m surprised that he’s hosting it there, as I always thought it was more of Democrat leaning place. I don’t understand all the controversy over healthcare reform, especially because it seems like in another three years the Democrats will undo it all in a partisan vote. Maybe it’s good from an experimental perspective as it means we are trying new health policies and testing them in the real world. But it does seem like public policy isn’t as stable as it was in years past. Whatever the Republicans end up doing, I hope it’s good for our country. 

Then we learned that FBI Director  James Comey was fired by the President. It’s a fascinating development. I wonder what it means for the future of our country. I don’t agree with all of Trump’s policies but I don’t want our country face a constitutional crisis. I just wish our president would behave and be a competent administrator for government. His whole presidency has been bizarre to say the least. 

In the grand scheme of things I guess it doesn’t impact me much because my health insurance is good, even if it’s expensive. I do worry more about the economy which is going to crap out sooner or later. A short certainly inflation and oil prices remain a concern, because that could take a bite out of summer fun.

I’m related news, I got the mildew smell under control by the bleach in the bathtub. Seems to be working well know that the bleach smell is mostly gone. I’ll keep an eye out for mildew, and keep scrubbing down things with bleach. As long as I keep up with it things should be fine. I also need to do a good vacuuming around. 

I think I’m going to kill the lights and go bed. Delicious waffles tomorrow once again! 

DEC Exploring Lodging and Dining Facilities at Boreas Ponds

This is a terrible idea. I don't think there should be developed areas within the forest preserve. I oppose the creation of all new intensive use areas, because we don't need to be turning our woods into new city parks. If people want to go to developed city-like parks, I suggest they try the developed parks maintained by NYS OPRHP outside of the Adirondack Park.

If the state needs more money to maintain these areas, they should open them up to controlled logging and natural gas production, like with the state reforestation areas. Logging is a sustainable business that provides an essential economic product. It doesn't bring large crowds to the woods, nor does it generate much waste or pollution. It helps maintain a young, vibrant forest that will attract a wide of species. Such revenue should be dedicated solely towards the maintenance of state lands, such as trails, roads, parking areas, docks, primitive campsites, picnic tables and outhouses.

Pennsylvania's Department of Conservation and Natural Resources should be NY State's model. They maintain 2.2 million acres of state forest but also harvest it for timber and natural gas -- and put that money back into maintenance of rustic facilities for all of the public use. Their lands are litter free, their primitive parks are clean and well maintained, their roads are pothole-free and trails kept in top shape.

Map: Ferd’s Bog Trail

Map: Ferd’s Bog Trail

A 50-acre black spruce bog, stream, and bog pond surrounded by 50 acres of boreal forest with a representative bird community including ...Three-toed Woodpecker, Black-backed Woodpecker, Olive-sided Flycatcher, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Gray Jay, Boreal Chickadee, and Lincoln's Sparrows.

Total Violent Crimes in NYS, 1965-2015

At 75,165 violent crimes committed in New York State in 2015, that is roughly the same as the number of violent crimes in 1967, at 75,124 crimes. In 1967, the state's population was only 17.7 million, compared to the 19.6 million population in 2015. There are 2.1 million more residents in the state. That means the 2015 violent crime rate of 379.8 per 100,000 persons is lower then the 1967 violent crime 409.7 per 100,000 rate of 1967. The rate in 1966 was somewhat lower at 342.6 and 1965 was 325.4. In other words, it seems like most of the 50 year crime wave from 1967-2007 is all but over.

Data Source: NYS Crime Statistics, 1965-2015. http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/nycrime.htm