The Lake George Land Conservancy, the Bolton Landing Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Bolton celebrated the expanded and improved Pinnacle Preserve with a ribbon cutting ceremony on October 5.
A vigorous partnership between the Lake George Land Conservancy, the Town and the Chamber has evolved over the past decade to protect and promote the community’s recreational resources, said Heidi Hesse, chamber president.
“As a chamber, we promote the work of the Land Conservancy, protecting land and maintaining trails,” said Hesse. “Our office manager, Elaine Chiovarou-Brown, helps visitors identify the trails that will meet their expectations; we now offer snow shoes so these preserves can be used year-round.”
Jamie Brown, the outgoing executive director of the Lake George Land Conservancy, noted that situating trailheads to the Pinnacle and Bradley’s Lookout within close proximity of Bolton Landing’s resorts, shops and restaurants was a recommendation of the 2019 report, ‘A Recreation Hub Strategy for Bolton,’ prepared by the Chazen Companies for the Conservancy and the Town of Bolton.
Bolton Supervisor Ron Conover recalled that the Pinnacle was slated for development before the Lake George Land Conservancy, the Town and The Fund for Lake George (now merged with the Lake George Association) arrived at an innovative solution that would protect the land and preserve Lake George’s water quality while providing local residents with new hiking trails.
When Bradley’s Lookout became available, Bolton employed the same technique, purchasing that ridgeline and surrounding forests and wetlands for use as a public park, to be protected into perpetuity with a conservation easement retained by the Lake George Park Commission.
“These properties are local landmarks which, if lost, could never be replaced,” said Conover. “The reaction of the community to the purchase of these properties has been enormously positive. Every resident of Bolton has now climbed to the top of the Pinnacle. People have met their significant others there. People have been married there and have held class reunions there.”
“All of us had a part to play in the protection of these properties, and it is gratifying to know that we are leaving something in place for future generations to learn from and enjoy,” said Jamie Brown, who has resigned from the Lake George Land Conservancy join the Open Space Institute.
The family of Elizabeth “Bo” Bixby Hawkins, who sold the 62-acre Bradly’s Lookout parcel at a discounted price to the Town of Bolton, was represented by Ted Caldwell, a nephew of Mrs. Hawkins.
“Bo Hawkins loved the Lookout, mostly because of her memories of horseback riding along the back roads of Bolton with its longtime owner, Arthur Bradley, who owned a stable in town,” said Caldwell. “When the Lookout came up for sale, she just had to save it, so she did. Her children knew that their mother would have loved to see it used by local residents, so I’m sure that’s why they worked so cooperatively with the Lake George Land Conservancy and the Town of Bolton.”
Others attending the ceremony included Deputy Supervisor Susan Wilson, Town Highway Superintendent Bill Sherman, Buildings and Ground Department head George Mumblow, Glens Falls Supervisor Claudia Braymer, Town Council candidate Brendan Murnane and representatives of State Senator Dan Stec and Assemblyman Matt Simpson.