Frum Outdoorsman: Rare but Possible

The wanderings and adventures of an orthodox Jew

Paddling the Basher Kill

Posted by Frum Hiker on August 16, 2007

This past Sunday I had the opportunity to paddle one of the most beautiful spots in the lower part of NY state. Basher Kill is really more of a swamp then a river. It also choked with weeds which made travel quite tough but well worth it. The swamp is this huge plain of all sorts of plants with a small sliver or pretty deep water meandering its way through. On both sides are mountains and the plain is vast affording a great view everywhere you look.

I launched my boat at the Basha Kill wildlife managment area parking lot which is off route 209- about halfway between Ellenville and Port Jervis. All was silent at the launching site and the second I got into my boat I realized what a gem this place really was. I could see one house high up on the hill and that was it. Surrounded by plants, interesting birds and placid waters I paddled my way south. It was slow going due to the weeds, but the silence and amazing beauty beckoned me to continue at every corner.

I paddled for a couple hours, I also brought my binoculars in my dry bag and had the chance to catch some really nice birds that occupy the wetlands. It was quite relaxing sitting in the fading light watching birds, and frogs and other wildlife lazying the summer afternoon away as the shadows grew long and the sun changed from yellow to bright pink.

There is a bridge in the middle that is too low, but you can walk over the road and launch on the other side. Several friendly folks were silently casting into the water in search of fish.

3 Responses to “Paddling the Basher Kill”

  1. reneez said

    I too have had many a silent moment on the Basha Kill

    Its wonderful – verturing out early in the year and early in the day to avoid the noise and distractions of people who dont really understand wildlife

    its amy only place to go for the last of a peaceful moment

    I’m writing to you to add that I havent portaged over the southern end bridge not the one in the middle and wanted to know the conditions on the other side and how it goes I dont think you can paddle that

  2. Hesh said

    Well I have actually only been there once and I only portaged over that bridge in the middle that is too low to paddle underneath.

    I was speaking to this fisherman and he said that in the spring before the algae buildup you can paddle pretty far, I happen to be paddling in a very thick buildup of weeds and water lillies making a rough go of it, but it was worth the trouble, my arms hurt, but I was all alone.

  3. Donnymeat said

    The “river” you speak of soon empties into the Neversink river just past the old Canal (right past the Canal museum on 209) its great trout fishing if you are interested in that…but also very fun to just paddle your way to Port Jervis if you want to.

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