Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Ice on the hudson

“One of the reasons there are so many terms for conditions of ice is that the mariners observing it were often trapped in it, and had nothing to do except look at it.” 

Alec WilkinsonThe Ice Balloon: S. A. Andrée and the Heroic Age of Arctic Exploration

One of the most striking places to see the effects of below-zero temperatures is on the Hudson River. Though jet skis and leisure boats are not in season, the river remains a year-round shipping route for petroleum products as well as a source of drinking water for over 100,000 Hudson Valley residents in communities such as Poughkeepsie, Highland and Rhinebeck.

When the Hudson freezes over the route is cleared by icebreaking boats. This past January the 140-foot U.S. Coast Guard Penobscot Bay icebreaking tug made it’s way from New Jersey to Albany. Can ram through ice up to 3 feet thick with the aid of a lubrication system that forces air and water between the boat’s hull and ice.  

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