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June 24, 2013

Program to allow guides on NYC reservoirs

Staff Report
The Daily Star

---- — Under a new program announced last week, outdoor guides will be able to gain access to city-owned watershed property. 

New York City Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Carter Strickland announced that the program will allow New York state-certified outdoor guides to utilize city-owned land and reservoirs in the Catskills. The program for certified guides underscores DEP’s ongoing effort to encourage low-impact recreation on city-owned property in the watersheds that will support the tourism economy in the Catskills, the release said. 

“Professional guides offer a valuable service for those who are seeking outdoor recreational opportunities in the Catskills,” Strickland said in the release. “By opening city-owned properties to these outdoor experts, DEP hopes visitors, including New York City residents, will find new places to enjoy the excellent fishing, hunting, and hiking in the scenic watershed.”

Outdoor guides that want to offer services on City-owned properties must be certified to do so by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. Among other requirements, the state program requires all guides to be certified in first aid, CPR, and water safety. Guides also must pass a state exam. 

Guides who are interested in utilizing city-owned land can call DEP at (800) 575-LAND. Visitors interested in choosing a guide may also call that number to ensure a guide is certified to offer tours on city-owned properties. DEP will not charge a fee, but guides will be required to complete an application and provide a copy of their state certification. Seasons for guide services will coincide with state hunting and fishing regulations, and the city’s recreational rules.

For more information about the DEP, visit nyc.gov/dep.