This past Sunday I paddle with some friends out of Inwood up to Piermont Marsh. It’s a popular destination, if a long one, about 25 miles round-trip. We left with the flood current and came back with the ebb, with some steady gusts on the way up against us.
There were only four of us: MH, the canoeist, El Lopex, another club member, and KT, a member of New York Outrigger invited along by MH. All are strong paddlers, but for the latter two this was the farthest north they’d ever ventured.
Along the way, we took in the fall foliage of the Palisades.
Along the way we encountered a large group of kayaks on the western side of the river. I counted at least a dozen, a mix of deck boats and sit-on-top doubles. I spoke with a woman named Lyn in a white NDK Romany, who said they were a meetup group from Long Island. They’d put in at JFK Marina in Yonkers and were stopping at the Italian Garden, another popular spot along the way, for lunch.
Eventually we came to our destination, Piermont Marsh. Situated just south of the Piermont Pier, the Marsh is thousands of years old – according to a naturalist we encountered on our way in. There are three channels, all with tall grass easily eight feet over our heads. After the wind, and the current changing against us, the marsh was a nice respite.
The way back was uneventful; we made good time with an increasing current. One paddler grew tired, but a decent resting spell cured him and we were on our way, passing more river traffic on our way down.
All in all it was a beautiful day. While the time up was windy, the wind subsided most of the way down, and we enjoyed what is likely one of the last clear, sunny days of autumn, before the air and water temperatures drop another notch, making trips like this one more complicated in the logistics.
I enjoy Piremont Marsh. It’s a bit of a reach for most Manhattan paddlers, but a worthwhile destination nonetheless.