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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Schodack Island State Park(Rensselaer County)

Got out for a nice walk at Schodack Island State Park after work today, located along the east shore of the Hudson River in Southern Rensselaer County.  The 1,052 acre Park is accessed off of Route 9J less than ten miles south of Albany.  Driving south, take a right turn at the large state park sign and follow the State Park Road until its end. 
There are over 8 miles of trails and many different trail options throughout the park.  A pleasant picnic area near the boat launch area provides wonderful river views.
 Here is a look upstream at the snow and ice covered Hudson River.
 A closer look at the Castleton Bridge(carrying traffic on the New York State Thruway Berkshire Spur) in the distance just beyond the Alfred H. Smith Memorial Railroad bridge in the foreground.
 I took the red marked trail that leaves the south end of the parking lot and passed several X-C skiers taking advantage of the several inches of fresh new snow pack.
 Peering up through the trees at the waxing gibbous moon.
 I followed the red trail, which is a wide woods road that follows the western boundary of the park  near the Hudson's shores.
 The Lafarge Cement Plant and Port of Coeymans Marine Terminal are located directly across the river to the west in Albany County.  Here is a look at part of the cement plant.
 Working roads and equipment across the Hudson at the Port.
 I could see a few vessels through the thick brush and trees.
 One of the clearer spots, where a view of the port can be seen.
 A screened view down to the frozen river just past the cattails.  Coeymans Landing Marina is located just to the south of the Port.
 Unfortunately, the park's gate was scheduled to close at 4:30pm so I was forced to turn back a bit earlier than I wanted to.  The walk back amongst the late afternoon shadows was very pleasant.
Fleeting sunlight.
 After arriving back at the parking lot, I took one last short walk down for a look at the setting sun over the wintry Hudson River.
Leaving the park and looking up at the Alfred H Smith Railroad Bridge, which has a clearance of 139 feet and was completed all the way back in 1924.
Walked 3.17 total miles on a cool but comfortably sunny winter afternoon.  Felt great and would've loved to kept going.  Looking forward to longer days.

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