September 15th, 2004 - Supply Drop by Helicopter!!!
Early morning fog greeted volunteers and DEC personnel on the summit of Bald (Rondaxe) Mt. who waited anxiously for the second attempt in a week for a helicopter drop of critical supplies to compete the restoration of our fire tower. As blue skies slowly appeared through the mist by 10 AM, the thunderous roar of the Saranac Lake based State Helicopter came into view and made a 360 degree sweep of the mountain. (see slideshow) Apparently satisfied with the drop location and low winds, the pilot headed westward to the material staging area in a field at Woodcraft Camp off the Rondaxe Road. Within 20 minutes, the DEC radios crackled a report that the first of three loads of wood, concrete, security fencing, and window frames was enroute to the summit. After each drop, volunteers moved in to quickly take apart the load and transport the materials to the work zone beneath the tower, clearing the dropzone for the next delivery. Thanks to the incredible coordination effort of DEC and Herkimer-based State Forester Fred Munk, the project went off without a hitch. Friends of Bald Mt. volunteer immediately got to work constructing the concrete footer beneath the first flight of stairs and installing the galvanized window frames in the cab. Work parties are schedule for the next two weekends in September and ..... with a little bit of luck with the weather, the tower should be opened once again to the public for the first time in fourteen years by October 2004!
OUR THANKS TO ALL THE VOLUNTEER WORKERS & DONORS (and the the great folks at Woodcraft Camp) WHO HAVE HELPED TO MAKE THIS PROJECT A GREAT SUCCESS!
The Bald Mountain Fire Tower Restoration Work is completely dependent on donated funds from all those who agree with us that the tower is an historic treasure, a destination point for thousands of visitors in the Old Forge region annually, and a tangible link to the dedicated foresters that help to preserve thousands of acres of forestland in the Adirondack Park during the past century.
Funds are still needed for interpretive signs and to establish a maintenance fund for the tower. Please help us by sending in a donation today to:
Friends of Bald Mountain