Esopus Estuary

The confluence of the Esopus Creek with the tidal Hudson River is designated as the Esopus Estuary, an area of Significant Coastal Fish & Wildlife Habitat. It is an approximate 970-acre zone that includes: the lower portion of Esopus Creek (up to the head of tide at Cantine Dam), freshwater tidal wetlands, submerged aquatic vegetation beds, tidal swamp forest, mudflats, shallows and littoral zone areas, and a deepwater section of the Hudson River.

The tidal Esopus Creek is also the centerpiece of the Ulster North Scenic Area of Statewide Significance. In dramatic fashion, the creek flows over the Cantine Dam, turns through a sinuous horseshoe curve of steep banks, and gives way to extensive tidal flats as it enters the Hudson River.

In 1985, the Village of Saugerties approved a Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers surveys and reports on Saugerties Harbor channel conditions and depths. In 2015, maintenance dredging was performed in the navigation channel from the Hudson River to the U.S. Coast Guard Station to restore a 12′ depth for full access for U.S. Coast Guard vessels. Note that the level of water in the creek when the tide is high is minimally affected by the shape or depth of the channel bottom. No matter how deep the channel is, the tide reaches an elevation established by the water surface elevation in the Hudson River and ultimately the Atlantic Ocean, which provides unlimited water to fill in dredged holes or channels.