Boating in Albany
Albany Yacht Club is Located 146 miles north of New York City and 8 miles south of the entrance to the NYS Canal System on the east bank of the Hudson River, which is a freshwater tidal estuary at that point. Overhead bridge clearances are 135’ from NYC up to AYC, and then drop to 60’ immediately north of the club (and to 21’ nine miles further north). The recreational and sightseeing opportunities are incredible, and boaters are encouraged to make the trip not just once in a lifetime, but repeatedly so that they may attempt to take in all that the area has to offer.
The club’s docks are floating fingers. The river is tidal with a lift of to 5 feet between low and high tide, and generally a 1kt current during tide cycles.
Public Boat Launches
|Corning Preserve||west||1.3 miles north|
|Rensselaer||east||1.6 miles north|
|Henry Hudson Park||west||6.5 miles south|
|Schodack Island State Park||east||10 miles south|
|Lansingburgh||east||11 miles north (via Troy Lock)|
|Waterford (below Lock E2)||west||11 miles north (via Troy Lock)|
|Coeymans||west||12 miles south|
If you do not have a boat but still want to get out on the river to check it out, there are two tour boats that pass by AYC regularly:
The Captain JP Cruise Line departs from 278 River Street in Troy (7 miles north of AYC on the east shore).
Now and then you might notice other cruise ships passing by AYC. There are two overnight cruise companies; Blount Small Ship Adventures, whose boats are sized to pass through the New York State Canal System, and American Cruise Lines whose boats can only go north as far as Troy, and then must head back.
Restaurants & Bars
The following are eateries with outdoor patios overlooking the river, and are accessible by boat via their own docks or nearby public docks.
|Riverfront Bar & Grill||(518) 426-4738||west||1 mile north|
|The Rusty Anchor||(518) 273-2920||west||7 miles north|
|Brown’s Brewing Company||(518) 273-2337||east||8 miles north (use Troy Dock)|
|Dinosaur Bar-B-Que||(518) 308-0400|
|Ryan’s Wake||(518) 270-9253|
|Yanni’s Too||(518) 756-7033||west||12 miles south|
|Boathouse Grille||(518) 756-3001||west||14 miles south|
Boat Repair & Service
|Van Schaick Marina||Repair, service||(518) 237-2681||west||9 miles north|
|Coeymans Landing||Boat dealer, repair, service, ship’s store||(518) 756-6111||west||12 miles south|
|Shady Harbor Marina||Boat dealer, repair, service, ship’s store||(518) 756-8001||west||14 miles south|
|Scarano Boat Building||Custom builder/upgrades, limited service||(518) 463-3401||west||2 miles south|
Getting into Boating
While there’s certainly agreement among recreational mariners about boating being one of the highest quality, most rewarding, and memorable of all leisure activities, it does require resource commitment. So before taking the plunge, it makes sense to research what type of boating one might want to do (powerboating, sailing, fishing, watersports), and what level of amenities will meet one’s expectations. A new boater can get into this sport for as little as a few hundred dollars by buying a boat and trailer off of someone’s lawn – but it only goes up from there.
As mentioned before, if you do not have a boat, you can get introduced to the Hudson River in Albany by riding on a tour boat, or you could visit one the many Hudson River waterfront parks, or you could join a rowing club. What are generally not available locally, though, are boat rentals. If you want to rent a boat, you have to drive west a bit and then there are a bunch of rentals available along the canal.
Once you consider boat ownership, there are several places to shop. For new or used boats you could go to any local dealership, or shop online at boats.com or boattrader.com (nationwide boat exchanges that enable local searches). There are also want ad sites like Want Ad Digest, and, of course, Craig’s List. If it seems intimidating going to a dealership when only casually shopping, try attending a boat show. These are usually held in the winter (NYC, Syracuse, Troy, Glens Falls), but there’s also an end-of-the-season Clear ‘em Out show in Syracuse (by the way, you don’t have to wait until September for “clear ‘em out” specials – any boat left in the showroom after 4th of July is considered a leftover).
A good place to look up boat specifications is boattest.com, but we cannot stress enough the importance of talking directly to boaters. The Albany Yacht Club encourages prospective boaters to come down to the club, meet boaters, and get a good understanding of what is involved. We are not just yacht club members, but ambassadors of the sport.
One thing that often gets overlooked when considering boating is the financial benefit. If the boat you select has a small head (bathroom) and galley (kitchen) then the interest on its loan is tax deductable because the boat qualifies as a second home. Additionally, the only tax you pay on it is the sales tax when you initially purchase it. After that there are no more taxes; unlike a lakefront second home that has thousands of dollars a year in property tax liability. Another added benefit is that a boat is mobile, so you get a fresh change of scenery every time you take it out, unlike a second home.