Make a Donation
Join with other Mohonk Preserve members, volunteers and supporters who are safeguarding an area designated as "one of Earth's last great places." With your help, we are protecting and stewarding the land, monitoring climate change, and educating future generations about the importance of conservation. Your support helps us to provide 300,000 annual visitors of all ages and abilities with a safe, participatory experience in nature. Thank you for helping the Preserve fulfill our mission of protecting the Shawangunk Mountains region and inspiring people to care for, enjoy and explore their natural world!
Expanding Environmental Education
For over three decades, Mohonk Preserve has been providing innovative education programs that have gotten over 100,000 children into nature. Our award-winning NatureAccess program provides quality outdoor education for people of all abilities, and our summer camps help children discover the wonders of the natural world. Our many diverse programs and events offer something for everyone, from recreationists to naturalists-at-heart, supporting lifelong learning and strengthening connections to the land.
In 2015, we celebrated our 30th anniversary of curriculum-based school field studies. The Preserve's outreach programs bring the natural wonders of the Shawangunk Ridge and its wildlife right into schools. We also offer one-time workshops on a variety of environmental and outdoor education topics.
We continue to work on new methods of reaching people in ways that enhance understanding, expand access, and strengthen their commitments to nature in our community, our region, and our world.
Bringing People and Nature in Harmony
One of Mohonk Preserve's most important challenges is expanding opportunities for recreation in nature while protecting culturally and environmentally significant areas. Nowhere is this balancing act more apparent than in the dedicated work of our Land Stewardship staff.
Throughout the year, our rangers, trailhead assistants, and facilities crew maintain a network of over 70 miles of trails and historic carriage roads, along with bridges, a green-design Visitor Center and grounds, interpretive signs and information kiosks, while also providing services for 300,000 visitors, many of whom are second- or third-generation Preserve members.
Stewardship staff have worked with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation to complete a state-of-the-art, GIS-based comprehensive plan and guidance manual for the restoration of the carriage road system that provides recommendations for immediate and long-term care of this practical and picturesque method of travel. Our Rangers also help visitors safely enjoy the Preserve by providing information, orientation, and search and rescue services. Our Facilities team, often assisted by Rangers, is active in maintaining our infrastructure of buildings and trailheads, including wayside kiosks, signage, gates and restrooms, and also in bridge repair and trail clearing.
The growing impacts of nature, including destructive weather episodes related to climate change, and demands of visitors require us to continue to invest in land management capacity to ensure that all of our unique pathways to nature are preserved for you today and future generations tomorrow.
Protecting Our Heritage
At Mohonk Preserve, we protect the places you love and we make sure that they stay protected forever. Since our founding in 1963 we have protected over 8,000 acres of breathtaking cliffs, forested hollows, hidden wetlands, and pristine streams. With help from our members and supporters, we do this through careful prioritization and adherence to strict quality standards for land conservation and nonprofit management. Our professional staff and volunteers are dedicated to protecting the places that make the Shawangunks special and upholding the Preserve's land ethic in perpetuity.
Our land protection work is multi-faceted and involves maintaining strong relationships with landowners and local communities, negotiating land transactions and land protection agreements, and monitoring our protected lands to ensure that they are not threatened or challenged. This work relies on sophisticated map-making systems, which also enable us to provide tailored maps and wayfinding information for the Preserve's visitors.
More than fifty years after we began, our goals remain unchanged: we protect the Shawangunk Mountains by conserving key recreation areas, fragile habitats and scenic viewsheds. Working together with you, we're leaving a conservation legacy that will remain for generations to come, fulfilling our promise of saving the land for life.
Continuing a Tradition of Conservation Science
In order to protect and perpetuate life on the Preserve's lands, we use the latest generation of scientific research techniques, and support our research staff, visiting scientists, and interns who monitor the environmental systems of the Shawangunk Ridge as part of our "living laboratory."
The Preserve is also extending the rich legacy of the Mohonk Preserve Daniel Smiley Research Center by adding to one of the best long-term phenological records in the country. Combined with more than a century of daily weather data, we provide a tremendous dataset that is shared with scientists and students and published in scholarly and scientific journals worldwide.
Researchers actively monitor the changing ecology of the Shawangunks and are using this information to sustain a regionally important ecosystem. Ongoing bird and vegetation surveys have documented changing wildlife populations and changes in the habitats on which they depend. Through forest management, staff are working to build integrity and resilience in our habitats against ecological threats.
Over a century of unparalleled research, collections, and natural history are embodied in the Mohonk Preserve Daniel Smiley Research Center. Applying this data to understand our changing world is of utmost importance. Your support today will ensure that this renowned resource will continue to contribute to our knowledge of nature into the next century.