OK Slip Falls
Carl Heilman II
continued OK Slip Falls, Town of Indian Lake, Hamilton County: One of the most spectacular waterfalls in the Adirondack Park, OK Slip is part of a 2,800-acre property that will soon be made available to the public for hiking and other outdoor pursuits. The tract contains 2.1 miles of the Hudson River, the Blue Ledges, the Hudson River Gorge, as well as Carter, Blue Ledge and Pug Hole ponds. This property also contains one of the most exciting sections of a popular whitewater route that draws more than 25,000 adventurers who annually pass through this property.
This tract is believed to harbor more rare and significant plants, mosses and liverworts than any other site in the Adirondack Park. It is also the only place in New York State where purple mountain saxifrage, hair-like sedge, wild chives and other rarities are known to exist.
Adirondack soils are typically acidic due to the geological makeup of the predominate bedrock. In this area, the bedrock is streaked with mineral-rich Grenville marble. One-billion-year-old marble outcrops in places like the Blue Ledges and OK Slip Falls have created growing conditions favorable for unique assemblages of plants to thrive. Blue Ledges is all marble, and because it faces northwest and remains wet through the summer it has functioned as a refuge — a small, detached piece of arctic mountain — and allowed a relic community of northern plants to persist. More than one-third of the 96 mosses that grow at Blue Ledge are uncommon or rare. Likewise, about one-third of the 69 mosses and liverworts at OK Slip Falls are also uncommon or rare. At OK Slip ravine, Braun’s holly fern and Pennsylvania buttercup are among the uncommon or rare vascular plants found.
Casey Brook, Town of North Hudson, Essex County: The 1,587-acre Casey Brook tract is strategically situated south of the High Peaks area of the Adirondack Park to the west of the Elk Lake Preserve. It provides a direct hiking connection to Mount Marcy and other High Peaks, as well as public hunting and camping opportunities. It adjoins the Boreas Ponds Tract, part of the former Finch lands that will be acquired later by the state.
Hudson Riverside/Ice Meadow Tract, Town of Chester, Warren County: This 727-acre parcel is an ecologically significant piece along 1.5 miles of the Hudson River, which links to a previously acquired Forest Preserve parcel. DEC will work with the Town of Chester to develop a trail system that avoids impacts to fragile plant life and private properties.