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A hurricane – wait, it wasn’t, it was a large storm – whatever it was, Sandy hit New York City last week.

More accurately, it made landfall on the eastern seaboard, devastating beach communities in New Jersey, Staten Island, and Long Island. Power was knocked out for millions in the region, and massive flooding drowned lower Manhattan to a level where some buildings won’t be usable for weeks.

Relevant to this blog, the flooding came up very high at both of the boathouses I paddle out of.

At Pier 96, the water came into the boathouse to about four feet high, depositing a thin layer of mud on the concrete floor. At Inwood Canoe Club, the water came up higher because the boathouse sits lower. The flooding lifted the launch dock higher than the main dock, and swept away portions of the retaining wall that holds dirt onto the shore.

In both cases, the clubs had taken measures to lift everything up high that had to be and could be. Paddles, floats, papers, electronics – everything went up or went away. fiberglass boats were lifted to at least four feet off the ground. I’m happy to say the Argonaut, ten feet up and as high as could be, survived without incident.

The only damage, such as it was, was mostly cosmetic to the boathouses. In the case of Pier 96, the Hudson River Park Trust is tackling the major repairs, and at Inwood, the club is putting together a plan to replace lost soil, repair the walls, and clean the place up.

In both cases, work days after the storm cleared away the detritus that washed in, and throw out the wreckage of what was left. The boathouses are in good shape, though there is still work to be done at each.

This is all a long way of saying I haven’t been out on the water recently. There is a possibility of getting out this weekend, but following the storm, there was a sudden drop in temperature, and as the weeks roll by, we’ll soon be in drysuit-only season.

But fear not! The cowgirl has prepared for this contingency, and if she’s not out paddling, she’ll be blogging, and writing down kayak-related thoughts that she hasn’t had time for in the regular paddling season.

Published in 2012 Backpaddle Downtown Boathouse Inwood Inwood Canoe Club New York New York City NYC


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