Tuesday, August 06, 2019

More Random Inwood Things

Sunday was lovely, but Saturday was pretty darned good too -- I just blogged about Sunday first because it was SO pleasant. Saturday was the 2nd leg of the annual races for the Joe Glickman Cup. The first was at Sebago in July, the third will be at the Yonkers Paddling and Rowing Club in September, and Saturday's was at the Inwood Canoe Club, the oldest paddling club in NYC, going back to 1902! Sadly, the original boathouse burned down, and so did the rebuilt boathouse, but they rebuilt a third time and never gave up, even when the Hudson was at its most polluted. Check out their History page for the whole story, it's pretty interesting. There's a chapter in F. Scott Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise where the protagonist is wandering the city, broke, and catches a bus uptown.

"He got off and with no distinct destination followed a winding, descending sidewalk and came out facing the river, in particular a long pier and a partitioned litter of shipyards for miniature craft: small launches, canoes, rowboats, and catboats."

I instantly thought of Inwood and the neighboring boathouses that used to be up there the first time I read that, and although it was just one brief moment in the novel, it still spoke to me of the recreational boating tradition that the city had and then mostly lost. It's been pretty amazing being part of the resurgence - the growth in paddling and rowing since I took my first kayaking lesson in 1998 has been something to see. Inwood's one of the few places where it carried on unbroken. The boathouse is relatively new, but the history is still there. 

Their location is quite spectacular, being just north of the George Washington Bridge, as you can see above. I do love Jamaica Bay but I really look forward to these events at Inwood and Yonkers because it's just so nice to get back on the Hudson up along the New Jersey Palisades. I used to love coming up here back in my Pier 63 days.  

It was another beautiful day and I took a ton of pictures, so I thought I would put a few up tonight and more another evening. 

Here was a really beautiful boat - I wish I'd gotten the name of the builder! Couldn't resist taking some pictures. 

And of course the food at these things is always great - I was so happy to see this giant tub of sweet corn being prepared for grilling! 


Alana said...

This is a tradition I wish had been possible to maintain when I grew up in New York City in the 50's and 60's but things (as you point out) were so polluted. I remember smog so thick it was like fog. And the water - don't mention it. I am so happy to see what has happened thanks to clean air/water laws and the hard work of many people.

Mary Winchester said...

Thanks for sharing the post. It seems you have a nice touch with the work you do. The traditional design seems good on the wooden boat.