Waterfall to close this weekend
A beautiful local waterfall will be closed to public view this weekend. YNN's Erin Vannella tells us why the favorite summer spot is off limits.
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RENSSELAER COUNTY, N.Y. -- “We've really tried to come up with a solution besides closing it. This is a last resort and it's very unfortunate and was a difficult decision to make,” said Rick Werwaiss, Nature Conservancy Eastern New York Executive Director.
Take one last look. Barberville Falls is closed for the summer. The Nature Conservancy is denying public access to the 140 acre Poestenkill preserve after years of bad behavior.
Werwaiss said, “People who have been coming here have been abusing the preserve. Misusing it. Swimming when swimming's not allowed, partying, drinking alcohol.”
But those who've respected the preserve's beauty say it's unfair.
“It was really peaceful and serene and that's really depressing. It’s like one of those spots that's a perfect winter or summer lookout, you know, it's a rare find around these parts,” Poestenkill resident Sean Cranston said.
But it's too late. New York State Police, the Rensselaer County Highway Department and the Town of Poestenkill support the decision to close the preserve. Try to visit after the holiday and you'll be charged with trespassing.
“The mission of the nature conservancy is to protect all the lands and waters on which life depends. We didn't protect this place for recreational use, we protected its ecological values,” Werwaiss said.
The falls will open again Columbus Day for the winter, but until then, preserve admirers will serve the sentence of the disrespectful.
Cranston said, “I can see where it would be a problem with people littering, when people are trespassing and they're doing the things they shouldn't be doing. Somebody’s got to ruin it for everybody I guess.”