In celebration of Aimee’s 30th birthday, I decided to take her on an excursion….a sailing excursion. Could it be possible to find a (resonably) affordable way of taking to the Hudson River in a sailboat and doing minimal environmental damage? Impossible you smirk?
No; in fact it is possible. Thanks to Pete Seager (yes, that Pete Seager)’s efforts. In 1969, he decided to build/ fund the building of a reproduction of a 18th century sloop….one like the kind that used to sail the Hudson River during the time of the Dutch settlers. A combined effort to rebond community members to their river as a public (not just private and commercial) space and to raise awareness about environmental issues of the Hudson Valley. At the time, the Rondout Creek and the Hudson River in general were wastelands with dumping going on as a matter of course.
So…..onto that sloop we went!:
The tugboat collection we passed on our way back up Rondout Creek. There was a party of friends having dinner and wine out on the deck of the brightly colored tug. Apparently, one of them owns and lives on that tug while working to restore the rest of his fleet of tugboats.
A shot of the rest of his tugboat collection. There were also a few more tugs further down the Creek that appeared to be from (much) earlier generations…..and were in a (much) greater state of disrepair.
Here’s some shots we took from the boat of the area we sailed through as well as some of the other sailboats that were out on the Hudson. Everyone was very friendly…most people who passed us waved hello…including the zippy jetskiis.
The Clearwater has a program that aims to get women and teen girls the opportunity to sail and learn about working on a sailing crew. The participants can spend either a week onboard the Clearwater helping out the staff or an entire summer if they are picked for staff. The woman in the blue t-shirt was our captain. Also, notice the head of the keel steer….one of the people on the boat said that an artisan friend of theirs who lives in Kingston, NY carved that for the sloop.
In both of these shots, the main sail is tacked down and has not been raised yet. Notice the wooden pulleys and also the wooden rings that connect the sail to the mast in the latter photo:
Before sailing, we did a little antique hunting and poking around in the cute town of Kingston. It was settled by Dutch explorers……who….apparently had a lot of praying to do…..here:
We passed about 6/7 churches on our short walk in just the downtown area.(!!!) Some had been made over into private homes….A more scary oneh though was abandoned and had giant “watch out, move to other sidewalk signs” in front of it….um, uh, but only viewable AFTER you passed in front of the church. Guess Kingston folk don’t believe in personal injury lawsuits.
View from the middle of the Kingston Bridge over Rondout Creek and looking toward the Catskills in the background. Great weather, about 70 degrees.
Ship to Shore
15 West Strand Street
Kingston, NY 12401
Hours: 9am-11pm, 7 days a week
112 Little Market St.
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
Tel.: 845.454.7964 ext. 107