Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Last upriver patrol of 2012 - Monday 11/19

Catskill at dawn. Sea smoke on the River because air is so cold. Deck covered with frost.
Mike Aguiar, owner of Riverview marine. Left hand is where water reached during Sandy, considerably higher than during Irene, right hand. All his shops and offices were flooded again.
US Army Corps dredge headed south to dredge West Germantown Reach. The River doesn’t really want to be 30 + feet deep - which is what is needed to accommodate the Port of Albany. The natural depth was much shallower before Europeans arrived.
Southbound light fuel barge

The dredge will come back to this temp dock at Houghtaling Island (not really an island anymore because of the Army Corps) and discharge its load of water and sediment onto the peninsula. Remember that the whole river is a Superfund site thanks to General Electric so this dredge spoil isn’t clean.
A photo of the dump on Houghtaling “Island” taken from a book I have aboard – ”Up River.” The land to the north of the dump is a state park. This once beautiful habitat shouldn’t be a dump for contaminated sediment. Notice the tree buffer around the shoreline. It reminds me of the clear-cuts in the Pacific Northwest.

We checked out the active dredging discharge at this dump a few years ago. The interior of Houghtaling “island” is a wasteland.

Duck hunting season. Some blinds are fixed structures and others are built on boats.
Saw this dead Wood Duck near Coxsackie. Could be that it got wounded and was able to fly some distance from the hunter before it fell. There are duck blinds in many of the marshes and on the shallow “flats” – where migrating waterfowl stop to feed and rest. In the pre-dawn twilight I often hear the gunshots - like today. Wood Ducks are beautifully colored, ornamental. Personally, I don’t get the appeal of killing for fun. I’d rather have more live ducks – it’s not like there are so many left in the first place.

A deer skin with head still attached. The fall is beautiful in the Hudson Valley, just not for everyone.

Approach to Port of Albany

Beautiful “strip marshes” below the Port, behind the “degraded” dikes that the Army Corps built years ago to channelize the River.

Port of Albany. A light double hull fuel barge.

Southbound again. The old ice house at Nutten Hook

Goodbye till spring.

Approaching Catskill, only southbound tonight.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Last patrol of 2012 - Sunday 11/18

Jack up boat off Palisades across from Croton Point. Presumably drilling for core samples related to either Champlain Express or West Point power cable projects. Both are using the Hudson as a conduit for electrical power cables for NYC. How much must the River give so New York City can have what it wants?

There was a lot of dock foam between Hook Mountain and Haverstraw today. We will be picking up man-made debris set adrift by Sandy for a very long time.

The Bald Eagle nest at Stony Point did not blow away during Sandy. Natural design.

Checking out rail work on east side just south of Bear Mtn. Bridge. We’re meeting with Metro North next week.

This little “marina” at Ft. Montgomery has been sliding downhill for years. Then last year Irene came along and nuked it. Now Sandy appears to have just about finished it off.

At Poughkeepsie there were a couple jet skis out. Water temp is 47 degrees. No wet or dry suits. Asking for it.

“Catch of the day” on deck. Several large foam blocks and a 50 gal trash bag full of bits. All dock foam from Sandy’s destruction.

Running fast for Catskill before light fails. Flat calm as only a winter river can be.

The Catskills

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pollution report: 11/2, 11/8 and 11/9/12 dry weather CSO discharge at Hamilton Av Br at entrance to Gowanus Canal

On 11/2/12, four days after Sandy, we sampled at the entrance of the Gowanus Canal at the Hamilton Av Bridge and found Enterococcus counts >24,196 per 100ml. The water was grey.

The Federal guideline threshold for primary contact is 104 Entero per 100ml.

On 11/8/12, the day after the Northeaster, we again sampled at this same location and again found Enterococcus count at >24,196 per 100 ml. See 3 photos below.

On 11/9 we visited site again and there was still some dry weather flow. See one photo below.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Southbound for two days in the Harbor 11/8

Running into Newtown Creek for the night to be in place for Gowanus patrols tomorrow morning. "Red sky at night - sailor's delight"

Trash and debris stranded by Sandy along Dutch Kill and Newtown Creek 11/2

During high tide during Sandy a great deal of trash was blown by SE wind into fence along the west side of the entrance to Dutch Kill off Newtown Creek (across from “Nature Walk”). All this material remains stranded above wall but will become re-suspended at next extreme high tide – perhaps during Northeaster coming tomorrow, Wednesday 11/7.

Dutch Kill
A similar condition exists along fence on the Exxon property on south side of Newtown Creek immediately east of the Greenpoint Av Bridge

At the entrance to the English Kill (an arm of Newtown Creek) there is a section along west side where a number of drums and other debris have been blown ashore, including a dumpster and several heating oil tanks.

Sandy at Westerly Marina: Monday morning high tide at 1030, 11/29

This morning’s high tide was one foot higher than the one last night, as models predicted. Tonight’s high tide around 2300 will be the big one.

The parking lot is on the left.
The dock systems are cut off from the land.
Circle Line boats running north to hide.