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Zoar Valley

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 10:58 am
by cbobcat49
This was just posted in the Footprint Press newsletter

No Trespassing at Big Falls & Deer Lick Falls - South of Zoar Valley

The Nature Sanctuary Society of Western New York, Inc. recently purchased a tract of land that includes Big Falls on South Branch Cattaraugus Creek in the Town of Persia, Cattaraugus County, NY. According to Richard Rosche, president of the Nature Sanctuary Society, this piece of land has for many years been over-used and abused beyond its limits, as the site of wild parties, pot smoking, drug use, swimming and all sorts of other illegal activity. Therefore, visitation to the newly acquired Nature Sanctuary Society property which includes Big Falls is now limited to those carrying current membership cards indicating that they are members of the Nature Sanctuary Society of Western New York, Inc. Group visitation will be limited to those groups who have made prior arrangements with the Preserve Custodian or a Society Officer to be there and their goals and activities MUST be compatible with those of the Society.  At least one member of the group must possess a current membership card. Local law enforcement will charge anyone found on the property, without the membership cards, with criminal trespass charges and they will have to appear in the Persia Town Court and pay a fine.

Membership in the Society is open to all those who are sympathetic to the goals and aims of the organization.  Membership dues are $10.00 per year per family/address. Contact Richard C. Rosche, President, Nature Sanctuary Society of Western New York, Inc., 110 Maple Rd., East Aurora, NY 14052, 
(716) 652-8409, [email protected].
Likewise, Patrick McGlew, Niagara Frontier Project Director for The Nature Conservancy, states that Deer Lick Falls is also on private property. The Nature Conservancy does not want people trespassing to visit Deer Lick Falls .

Big Falls (The Falls) is described as a creekwalk in "200 Waterfalls in Central & Western New York - A Finders' Guide" on pages 175-180 (depending on the edition you reference). You can still creekwalk up the South Branch Cattaraugus Creek, Simply view Deer Lick Falls (a portion of it) from the creek, then turn around, to stay on DEC property and avoid arrest.

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 11:07 am
by Matt
that sounds like a great way to handle issues like the abuse of these sites. I heard these areas are horrible when it comes to trash. people cut down trees and make fires, laving behind cans, bottles and such.
restricting it to member's only is a great way to handle it. I wonder how well this will be enforced though.

I'm thinking future revenue can go towards getting staff memberships for reasons like this.

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 5:09 pm
by cbobcat49
Here's a link to the latest Footprint Press newsletter... ... tter80.htm

There's an update on Zoar Valley protection, which is very good news. There's also a review on a fictional book about the Adirondacks which looks interesting.

Posted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 11:25 am
by cbobcat49
I just found this site on Zoar Valley. It's a pretty good overview of all the highlights of the gorge...

Posted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 11:31 am
by Matt
That's great. I didn't know about "Butt Falls." Great name!

Re: Zoar Valley

Posted: Tue Nov 04, 2008 5:48 pm
by cbobcat49
I just received the latest newsletter from the Nature Sanctuary Society of Western New York. In it they mention, due to continued vandalism and trespassing issues, the upstream South Branch area around Big Falls will not only be be closed to everyone but NSS members but access will only be allowed for NSS sponsored events and hikes. (This is as of 1/1/09) Also in the article is mentioned a forest fire in May 2005 that was started by partyers burning trash that destroyed 2 acres of old growth forest. :shock: I didn't know about that.


Re: Zoar Valley

Posted: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:16 pm
by Mark J
Sad, tragic, needless, what else can I say.

Posting one's land against "trespass" in response to forest fire and vandalism at first seems understandable, but when you think about it, accomplishes little.

Is a moron who kindles an unlawful fire going to respect a No Trespassing sign? Doubtful. I don't know this particular property, but imho, posting the land against trespassing has the effect of keeping out those who are responsible, law abiding citizens while having no effect on the scumbags who have no respect for the property of others, for the access rights of others, or for the land itself. It is entirely possible that this property owner would be better off to take down the No Trespassing signs so that the scofflaws understand that they are no longer entering a parcel that is off-limits to law abiding citizens who might observe and report their activities.

Mark J.

Re: Zoar Valley

Posted: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:25 pm
by Matt