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Old 05-06-2009, 18:50   #1
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Anchoring on the Hudson River?

Hello everyone,

I keep my Pearson 26 in Brooklyn and over the 6 months or so that I've had it I've enjoyed a number of weekend sails around the New York area and one invigorating trip out the Sound to Montauk and back in April (brrr!), spending most of the nights at anchor. Now I'm planning a trip up the Hudson River towards my hometown. My goal is to get from Brooklyn to Kingston without motoring at all, or hardly at all.

Does anyone out there have experience anchoring on the banks of the Hudson River? Looking at the chart, it seems like it will be straightforward enough. There are a variety of protected little areas, but considering the calm 'seas' (albeit with decent tidal movement) I'm thinking it won't even be too necessary to find real protection.

Since our progress up the river will depend on the wind, the more safe spots I have scouted out the better, so any info you could share is much appreciated.

Thanks,
Jack
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Old 05-06-2009, 21:07   #2
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The current on the Hudson can get pretty big and the chop would surprise you when the wind picks up - especially from the south or north. Add to that the immense amount of shipping traffic, and its wake, up and down the river. I don't know what you draw, but I would recommend that if you were to anchor out that you look at some of the estuaries that end in the Hudson, or a few of the islands along the way.
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Old 06-06-2009, 03:53   #3
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You'll suffer some nasty wakes from tows.
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:30   #4
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On our trips south in the fall from Toronto and north again in the summer we always used to anchor in the Hudson. There are many sheltered anchorages from Catskill to Upper Nyack, most of them on the west bank and one or two on the east bank. We never went into a marina on the Hudson.
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:36   #5
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The tough part will be the part around Manhattan Island up to the Goerge Washington Bridge. Not many places to anchor without being beat up from wakes. Above the bridge you can anchor almost anywhere close in to the banks. Get a chart and avoid the rocky bottom areas. North of the Tappan Zee Bridge, many people anchor at Croton Point (the North side), water is about 7-8 feet deep and well protected from Southerly winds. Just South of the Bear Mountain bridge is also a cove that is a common anchorage area.(Near the old steamboat dock). A word of caution.........the currents in the Hudson can be fierce.....3 to 5 knots in some areas........be sure to allow enough scope to account for the 3 1/2 foot tidal range.......
Enjoy the trip.....the Hudson is a great river to explore!!!

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Old 06-06-2009, 11:59   #6
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Thanks... any more info on the Bear Mountain location?

Thanks for all the responses; they are a big help. It sounds like my plan is reasonable as long as I find good holding ground against the movements of tides and wakes, etc.

I won't have to worry about anchoring south of the GW bridge. Depending on how far we get in the first day I think we'll end up anchoring around Croton Point, but if we cover enough ground I would love to try that spot you mentioned (capt 465) near the Bear Mountain Bridge. Can you be a little more specific about that exact spot? I'm looking at the charts and at google earth and I see a cove right off the railroad line where it crosses over the water. I also see what might be the steamboat dock. Do people usually anchor just south of the dock, right near the railroad causeway?
The chart shows an obstruction in the area and 1ft depths, although I'm sure there's a nice 10ft contour line in there somewhere. If you could explain that a little more it would be great.

Also, if I were to drop a second anchor for added security, would it make sense to use a stern anchor in this type of situation, to keep the boat parallel with the current? Or would it make more sense to drop two bow anchors, spread apart, so that I could swing around when the current reversed.

Thanks again, and if anyone else has favorite spots to anchor, especially between Newburgh and Kingston, it would be much appreciated.

Jack
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Old 06-06-2009, 15:55   #7
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You have the right spot!!!!!!!!!
There is plenty of water as long as you stay about 200 Feet off the railroad line. There is plenty of room there for many boats........No need for dual anchors, one good one from the bow is plenty......just allow for the 3 1/2 foot tide range. The cove is right behind Green "31". Just nose in till you see about 10 or 15 feet and drop the hook.
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Old 06-06-2009, 20:49   #8
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Are you talking about a literal cove, like the one at the north end of Iona Island? Or the general area to the west of Green "31"? I didn't know about that anchorage... looks like a good spot. OrangeCrush - Don't overestimate how far you'll get the first day out of NYC. The current by the GWB is wicked and always seems to be unfavorable every time I make it through there! Once you get north of Haverstraw, if you pick up a favorable current you can ride it all the way to Catskill in an easy day.
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Old 08-06-2009, 19:58   #9
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Iona Island

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Originally Posted by captain465 View Post
You have the right spot!!!!!!!!!
There is plenty of water as long as you stay about 200 Feet off the railroad line. There is plenty of room there for many boats........No need for dual anchors, one good one from the bow is plenty......just allow for the 3 1/2 foot tide range. The cove is right behind Green "31". Just nose in till you see about 10 or 15 feet and drop the hook.
I have often passed there but was wary of going in because chart shows shallow water. I draw just about 5'. Just to confirm, you are referring to an anchorage just north of Iona island? Also, would you have local knowledge of how it would be to anchor in the vicinity of where the old mothball fleet was, I believe thats north of Stony Point (I don't have a chart handy)....thanks in advance for the info.
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Old 08-06-2009, 20:31   #10
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Yes, just north of Iona,Just don't go in too far.... You can also anchor right north of Stony Point.......the area wher the old mothball fleet was is about another 1/2 to 3/4 mile north.....right opposite the Indian Point Nuclear Power plant...that area would be a bit more exposed, at least behind Stony Point you will be protected from the south........
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Old 28-10-2009, 17:52   #11
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I was eyeing the anchorage just north of Iona Island while hiking last weekend from the top of Bald Mountain. Did of any of the other people on this chat successfully anchor there? Is it secure enough to leave your boat there and go explore the island by dinghy or go hiking for some hours? OrangeCrush, did you already do your trip? Did you find any other nice anchorages in that area? I'm well familiar with the Croton Point anchorage but no others.
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Old 28-10-2009, 18:49   #12
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Hey Joe,

I did go on my trip back in late June early July. I scoped out that Iona Island anchorage from the river and it looked pretty serene, although it is in a pretty intense part of the river. I never ended up stopping there though... As a friend told me before I went, it's all about good holding.

I ended up anchoring twice on the way up and twice on the way down in the same pair of spots: Below the Palisades cliffs of NJ about a mile north of the Alpine boat basin and just south of Bannerman's Castle right where the river opens up before Newburgh.

In the first spot we found some nice mud. So nice, in fact, that in the morning I had to crank up the anchor line on a jib sheet winch and rock back the boat against the tension to work it out. I was very surprised at the strength of current even in places where the river is wide and shallow. If we hadn't have been so entrenched in the mud we might easily have popped out and dragged. It was extremely beautiful, dark and quiet. If you venture over there, watch out for sticks and an occasional spot of ragged rocks. Better approach in daytime or maintain some distance from the cliffs.

In the second spot we found some good mud south of the island. There is a little trench that runs close to the shore where you can find deep enough water to sneak north towards the island. You'll find it on the chart. But the second time we anchored there, we arrived late and tired and I didn't go in as far as I did the first time. I also obviously didn't set the anchor right, because in the middle of the night we were woken up by a bumping noise. We had broken our hold in the current and were along the shore. Luckily we weren't up against much except for an overhanging tree, so I maneuvered the boat back where we were the first time, dropped two anchors and turned in for the rest of the night. In the morning, the tide was ripping again and we were hanging on under a pretty good strain on the anchor lines.

I guess the moral of the story is that it's better to be safe than sorry. There are lots of spots to stop along the river, and there's no need to go from something dramatic if it will be dicier. We were lucky that we didn't drift into the channel or elsewhere when we dragged. In general, I found the Hudson to be extremely easy and relaxing. It makes sense to sail with the tides and time your sleeping accordingly. We slept in when the tide was against us and sailed into the night when it was with us and it was a great great trip.

If you want me to be more specific I am happy to elaborate... Now I'm busy squeezing out the last few sails of the season here in Brooklyn and planning for next year's voyages. Good luck!
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Old 30-10-2009, 18:33   #13
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Wow, your experience anchoring in the Hudson doesn't bode well for others. Do you think your anchor wasn't big enough or do you think the current is just too strong to anchor reliably?
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Old 31-10-2009, 15:11   #14
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I think my anchor was barely adequate and I didn't set it as well as I should have I backed it in, but it was the other direction that pulled us out. It's a 20 lb danforth anchor with only about 5 feet of chain on it. It did the trick in good mud but if the bottom is too soft or too rocky it wouldn't hold. It is tricky because when you arrive you set the anchor to the conditions that you find there, but you have to remember the current will swing back and forth and get stronger and weaker. This can have the effect of really digging you in, as it did in the first spot, or breaking you loose, as it did near the island.

If I had a plow anchor with more chain I think I would be fine in most places. Setting two anchors also did the trick but it got a little messy with all the swinging.
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Old 06-06-2015, 04:59   #15
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Re: Anchoring on the Hudson River?

I am planning on anchoring in Croton on Hudson during the Clearwater Festival this month. Has anyone done this before? Will the town allow me to anchor there?
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