Kayaking near Saugerties NY: Lower Esopus Creek

This offseason, my paddling explorations have been curtailed by other commitments. On Saturday morning I had business in Albany. I figured if we got back on the road by mid-afternoon we’d have time to squeeze in a short paddle on the way home.

kayaks on the truck

There is a good variety of choices for kayaking between Albany and my home in the southern Hudson Valley. With only a few hours to get out, I settled on a stretch of flatwater for kayaking near Saugerties: the mouth of Esopus Creek. I’d had an eye on this stretch of water for a while. Last season my curiousity grew when I paddled Rondout Creek, just a little further south.

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Haverstraw Bay Paddle

Last year I found myself part of a captive audience for a long presentation from the Rockland County Historical Society. It covered a lot of local area history. One story that caught my attention was about the collapse of a couple of blocks of the town of Haverstraw (originally called Haverstroo by the Dutch) in a massive landslide in 1906.

Haverstraw Bay paddler

I knew that brick making was a major industry in the area but hadn’t given much thought to why that was. An abundance of natural clay deposits was the reason the brick factories were located in Haverstraw. Extensive mining of the clay more or less directly under the town led to erosion that eventually caused a giant landslide.

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Shawangunk Trail Run

I usually take Sunday as the day for a long run or ride, but the weather forecast did not bode well. Having more than paid my dues working out in the rain, I headed for Lake Minnewaska State Park on Saturday.

Wolf Jaw connector

My goal was to run west, past Lake Awosting to the High Point Trail, which goes north towards High Point, and a landmark called Four Mile Camp. This is the most remote part of Minnewaska State Park. Two years ago, I’d tried to get there from Sam’s Point Preserve, and didn’t quite make it.

Rain was a long shot on Saturday, but low clouds blanketed the parking area where the old Wildmere resort hotel had resided. I laced my running shoes, stuffed a jacket, a hat, and couple of Clif bars into my hydration pack, and set out.

Millbrook Ridge
Millbrook Ridge

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