Paddling The Hackensack River With The Interstate Hiking Club
Bill Maloney

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01RoyNLing 02Ling 03USSLing 04USSLing
01 Roy & Ling 02 Ling 03 USS Ling 04 USS Ling
05SubmarineLing 06USSLingConningTower 07CharlieNUSSLing 08USSLing
05 Submarine Ling 06 USS Ling Conning Tower 07 Charlie & USS Ling 08 USS Ling
09USSLing 10LingBow 11LingBow 12USSLing
09 USS Ling 10 Ling Bow 11 Ling Bow 12 USS Ling

These photos were taken on a paddling trip with the Interstate Hiking Club led by Roy Messaros on 9/14/07. My dad Jack Maloney used to be very active in the club. We put in the Hackensack River at Foschini Park which is right off river street behind the Toyota dealership. Roy led us about 1/3 mile south to see and paddle around the Submarine USS Ling. Seeing the sub from the water was a very different and interesting experience. The Ling is sitting in the mud with a slight list to port. The museum's Landlord, The Bergen Record, has asked that the submarine be moved as they want to develop or sell the land the museum occupies currently. The obstacles the museum currently faces are money, dredging (the Army Corps of Engineers must handle that. The entire channel downstream of the USS Ling must first be dredged before the submarine can be moved.), hull repairs, and a new home for the sub.

After getting out fill of the submarine we paddled upstream and quite amazingly when we got north of Route 4 the banks of the Hackensack River became green and lush with trees and vegetation. Herons and snowy egrets dotted the shoreline and large fish broke the water's surface. There were some bottles and trash here and there but no tires and nowhere near the amount of debris you would have expected in a river in such an urban environment. Surprisingly very few of the waterfront properties had docks or any kind of access to the river. The Hackensack River becomes very shallow as you paddle north of Route 4, in some places less than 2 feet at high tide. Roy timed the trip with the tides - 2 hours before and after high tide so the current was with us both ways. We stopped about 4.5 miles north at a municipal park and ball field who's name escapes me. Roy said we could have gone another half mile or more had the group been up to it. The Hackensack River is a very interesting and different environment to paddle, with wilderness seemingly springing out of an urban area.

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