March 5, 2013 in Keepers Log

Open Water

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A week ago Sunday, ice floes still drifted in the river, but a few dedicated kayakers ventured out and paddled down from Malden. On Monday, full moon tides lifted the remaining piles of ice from the shoreline and carried them away with the ebb. By Wednesday morning, the water was free of frozen obstacles, allowing a downstream neighbor to paddle up in a kayak and return something he had “borrowed” last year. He kindly brought back a wooden Adirondack chair which had been swept away from the deck by Irene and washed ashore at his house in Glasco. While we chatted and lamented the untimely demise of the ice-sailing season, we watched the USGS-cutter Hawser depart from Saugerties, its ice-breaking services no longer needed. The open water beckoned, so on Saturday evening, I put my kayak into the river and paid a visit to a neighbor across the river in Tivoli. A light snowfall accompanied me on the crossing, a reminder that winter was not quite over despite the rapid thaw of the river.

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