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My Day at Olana
About 18 months ago, WGBH-TV ran a series called
"Visions" hosted by Robert Hughes, Art Critic for
Time magazine. The TV show was a survey of American
art from Colonial times until the modern era. One
of my favorite segments dealt with the "Hudson River
School" of painters, typified by Thomas Cole and
Frederick Church. The latter made so much money that
he could afford to buy a hilltop property and
build a miniature Arabic-style castle, much like
"Castle in the Clouds" in NH. I made a mental note to
visit the site someday, and the chilly Columbus Day
weekend just past was the time I accomplished that
goal. By now, you're saying what does this have to
do with anything relevant to the B.R.I.G?
Well, get this picture: a glorious natural venue
with hilltop views of the Hudson River valley and the
distant Adirondacks during the height of foliage...
wouldn't this alone be enough to make the day
memorable? Sure, but with my naked eye taking all
this in, I became aware of even something even more
transfixing: RADIO TOWERS!
I scurried to my car and whipped out my trusty
binoculars and caught the three-tower array of WCKL
AM 560 in all its glory.
I believe that WCKL is of comparatively recent vintage
(the 1970's?) when new-from-the-ground-up AM's
erected fairly chintzy towers...but these are
90-degree structures for a very long-wave AM,
in good condition, freshly painted with a 3-bay
FM on one of them (don't know the frequency).
The precise location Rt 9G, south of Hudson, NY
a quarter-mile below Olana State Park and just
South of the Rt 82 cutoff.
Anyway, Olana is a must-see if you're ever in the
neighborhood, but it's a sure sign of radio
dementia if one of the most scenic spots in
the northeast is made even more so by three steel
Laurence from Methuen
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