Photo: FLLT

Land Purchase Enhances Public Access to Chemung River

The Finger Lakes Land Trust (FLLT) today announced it has purchased 190 feet of frontage on the Chemung River in the town of Big Flats, Chemung County. The FLLT intends to convey the two-acre property to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation as an addition to the Big Flats Wildlife Management Area.

The property is located on the north side of the river, adjacent to 211 acres acquired by the FLLT in 2019 which the organization also expects to transfer to the state. Addition of the recently acquired property to the wildlife management area will improve outdoor recreation opportunities by providing public access to the river.

A river with green hills in the distance

Photo: FLLT

By protecting these properties from development, the FLLT is helping to safeguard scenic views enjoyed by paddlers and anglers. This stretch of the river between Big Flats and Elmira passes under the steep Palisades, a long sinuous cliff hundreds of feet high that looms over the southern shore.

“We are delighted that we were able to acquire this stretch of river frontage for the public,” said Land Trust Executive Director Andrew Zepp. “The Chemung is truly a remarkable resource that provides outstanding opportunities for outdoor recreation and education.”

This is the FLLT’s 18th project in the Chemung River watershed where the organization has contributed to a growing network of conserved lands. Other protected lands nearby include the FLLT’s Steege Hill, Plymouth, and Kehoe nature preserves, the newly created Big Flats Wildlife Management Area, and the Nature Conservancy’s Frenchman’s Bluff Preserve.