A huge part of what makes New York so great is the waterways that surround it. New York has so much deep-rooted history in the buildings and landmarks that it is easy for many to overlook the history and significance of the NYC coast. Skyline Cruises is proud to call these waters home, and we want to share five interesting facts about the waterways of New York with you. We hope you enjoy learning more about another aspect of what makes New York so spectacular.
- The East River Isn’t a River
- The Hudson River is Important for Trade
- The Erie Canal Has an Unofficial Song
- The Long Island Sound is an Estuary
- The Delaware River Has Superior Ecological Integrity
Even though it is always called a river, the East River is a tidal strait because it does not flow from a freshwater source. When the Wisconsin glacier melted more than 11,000 years ago, the waterway was formed, causing the Atlantic Ocean to advance. The East River is known for its narrow channel and difficult currents, however, it did become easier to navigate with the clearing of reefs from the Hell Gate, a section of the East River located between Ward’s Island and the Queen’s Coast.
Even though it is smaller in size than other major rivers in America, such as the Mississippi River and the Ohio River, the Hudson River has been used for trade and as a travel route throughout history. People from all walks of life are attracted to the Hudson River’s splendor and beauty. Present-day, many important industries are located at the Hudson River as it continues to serve as an important trade route.
An ode to the Erie Canal was written in 1905 by Thomas Allen and was called “Low Bridge! Everybody Down!” and quickly became known as the Erie Canal Song. First recorded in 1912, it has been covered by great legends like Pete Seeger and Bruce Springsteen.
An estuary is a place where saltwater from the ocean mixes with fresh water from rivers draining from the land, and that is exactly what the Long Island Sound is. Estuaries serve as feeding, breeding, and nursery areas for many species that spend most of their adult lives in the ocean. The Long Island Sound is home to more than 1,200 species of invertebrates, 170 species of fish, and dozens of species of migratory birds.
The Delaware River hosts an abundance of wildlife including mink, muskrat, beavers, white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, owls, bobcats, and otters. More than 200 avian species rely on the Delaware River. The watershed also hosts one of the largest populations of wintering bald eagles in the northeast.
Enjoy NY Waterways Aboard the Skyline Princess
As you can now see, a great deal of history flows through the waterways of New York. We hope you will join us here at Skyline Cruises for a memorable journey aboard the Skyline Princess. For more information, contact the event planners at Skyline Cruises today!