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The Long and Winding Trail: Nyack Beach State Park, Post-Sandy

by Grant Jardine

The popular walking, jogging and bicycling  trail at Nyack Beach State Park was literally washed away by the storm surge caused by Hurricane Sandy last Fall. The path, which runs along the Hudson River from Upper Nyack to Rockland Lake State Park, was partially re-opened in the Spring with final repairs to the gravel pathway and parking lots completed in July. New York State Parks Department and many volunteers worked up to 10 hours a day six days a week to complete trail repairs and make park improvements.

Walking down what was the river trail a few days after Hurricane Sandy was an eerie experience. “The parking lot had its pavement torn up, picnic tables were nearly in the water and the trees were either out of the ground or completely uprooted and unsafe,” said Emily Selover, a Congers resident and trail restoration volunteer. The gravel walking surface along the trail was washed away by the storm and replaced by filler rocks, up-rooted trees and mounds of dirt.

Volunteers worked with Nyack Beach State Park staff to restore the trail and repair the park, spending a snow, sleet and rain-filled day re-planting the up-rooted trees that line the parking lot and trail.  Construction crews rebuilt the wall separating the Hudson River and the park. New York State invested $930,000 to rebuild Nyack Beach State Park.

Whether walking, bicycling, fishing or picnicking, everyone who enjoys the parks can be grateful for the efforts of many to restore the river trail.  Thanks to everyone who worked on repairs and reconstruction, the popular Nyack Beach State Park is once again open for use and (hopefully not too much more) abuse, but either way, we can handle it.

Grant Jardine worked to document and repair damage in Nyack Beach State Park after Hurricane Sandy. He is in his second year in the SUNY Rockland Honors Program.

Photos: Nyack Beach State Park after Hurricane Sandy. Credit: Dave Zornow, Colin Heasman

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