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Friends of the Gorges

Friends of the Gorge is a Cornell University student organization whose mission is to promote the stewardship and responsible, safe use of the campus gorges. Students are actively working to develop and implement recommendations and solutions to address a wide range of interrelated issues:

  • trail safety, maintenance, and repairs
  • litter and illegal trash dumping
  • risk of swimming in the gorges
  • access to and appropriate use of these important recreational resources for the Cornell and Ithaca communities.

Friends of the Gorges works closely with Cornell Plantations Natural Areas Program and has already implemented trail maintenance projects in Fall Creek Gorge, led freshman orientation walks, and promoted a gorge safety and responsible use message to freshman orientation leaders, resident hall directors, and resident advisers.

Please get involved and join us!

Attend weekly meetings and hikes every Thursday from 5:00 - 6:00 PM in Rice Hall, Room 300.  FREE PIZZA!  

Past Events

Read about our display of gorge trash that was part of the Earth Day display on Ho Plaza.

Friends of the Gorges (FOG) and their faculty advisor Marianne Krasny recently organized and completed a trail stewardship workday at the Monkey Run Natural Area with support from Cornell Outdoor Education, and its Director Todd Miner.  The trail is also part of the Cayuga Trails Club (CTC) trail network, and CTC volunteers Tom Reimers and Gary Mallow were also on hand to assist.  Joe Buttafuoco coordinated on behalf of Plantations, and reports, "The work party went really well.  There was a total of 6 student volunteers from FOG including Department of Natural Resources student Mike Roberts, who did a great job taking the lead on this project.  A retaining wall of locust logs was installed and then backfilled with soil and rocks from the edge of the old agricultural field.  Since this area is often muddy during wet weather, we installed a "bog bridge", which was also constructed from locust wood harvested nearby.  In addition, 600' of rope was tiedup to trees to keep people along the trail and away from the cliff in the steep section.  Mike really knew a lot and is great at leading people on trail work and instructing them in new tasks.  It was hard work, but the weather was beautiful and I think everyone had a great time

Friends of the Gorge VP and senior DNR student Michael Roberts led a natural history hike, "Explore your gorges" on September 22 to explore Beebe Lake and Fall Creek Gorge.

Friends of the Gorge teamed up with Alpha Phi Omega on September 23 to conduct a gorge cleanup event.  Students helped remove litter in Plantations' beautiful and treasured Cascadilla Gorge Natural Area.

For more information, contact the club at

or contact Marianne Kransy, FOG faculty advisor.