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Education & Stewardship

Caring for the university’s gorges and the many community members who use them requires a team approach that brings together staff, faculty, and students from across Cornell University.

Gorge Stewards

Gorge stewards Lisa Malloy '16, left, and Samantha Kochman '16 are here to greet and guide, inform and advise.
Gorge stewards Lisa Malloy ’16, left, and Samantha Kochman ’16 are here to greet and guide, inform and advise.

The gorge stewards program was established as part of the university’s comprehensive approach to gorge safety. These gorge ambassadors walk the gorges from May to September to provide information about trails, safety rules, natural history, activities, and swimming alternatives. Guided tours are available weekly from late June through late August.

The stewards also track visitor use, including unauthorized or illegal uses. Since the inception of the program in 2012, the number of observed violations has decreased nearly 64 percent.

Cornell Botanic Gardens

Cornell Botanic Gardens is responsible for maintaining the safety of gorge trails and the health of gorge ecosystems. The Plantations manages over 3,400 acres of natural areas, including nearly 50 miles of trails, 18 of which are located on campus. Staff and volunteers also steward natural areas through controlling invasive species, restoring habitats, and managing other threats.

Cornell Outdoor Education

Cornell Outdoor Education serves the broad membership of both the Cornell and local communities, and develops experience-based education in the outdoor environment at Cornell University and around the world.

Friends of the Gorges

Friends of the Gorges is a Cornell University student organization whose mission is to promote the stewardship and responsible, safe use of the campus gorges.