The Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) has recently protected 150 acres adjoining Prospect Mountain in the south basin of Lake George. The property includes the headwaters of a main branch of West Brook, one of Lake George’s largest tributaries. In total, more than one mile of stream corridor has been protected.
The land lies in the towns of Warrensburg and Lake George and is adjacent to New York State’s Prospect Mountain. The property contains very steep forested slopes, and is visible from the Adirondack Northway (I-87).
The McPhillips family, who have worked with the LGLC in the past to protect other sensitive lands in the watershed, generously agreed to sell the land at a discount in a transaction known as a bargain sale.
Stormwater runoff is one of the biggest threats to the water quality of Lake George. Over-development on ecologically important lands contributes to this runoff, which carries pollutants and excess nutrients downstream. The LGLC works to prevent the impacts of runoff by strategically protecting sensitive lands from over-development in conservation initiatives throughout the watershed.
One such project is the West Brook Conservation Initiative. West Brook is a major tributary of Lake George, and is estimated to contribute 50% of the total annual tributary runoff entering the south end of Lake George.
In the early 2000s the LGLC and partners at the Lake George Association, the FUND for Lake George, the Village of Lake George and Warren County, worked together to protect 12 acres of developed land surrounding West Brook and restore it to its original wetland state. The restored wetlands now provide the same benefits of natural wetlands, filtering millions of gallons of water each year and removing excess nutrients and pollutants before they reach the lake.
At the same time, the LGLC also purchased the 1,400-acre Berry Pond property to protect a significant amount of streams and ponds that feed into West Brook. Not only does this land, now owned by New York State, provide permanent protection of these waters, but it also hosts thousands of hikers and snowmobilers each year.
Map of West Brook and Prospect Mountain addition courtesy LGLC.