Monday, June 10, 2024

Happening This Saturday

Once again this year, the residents of Hudson have the opportunity to become citizen scientists, trained to test and evaluate the water in Oakdale Lake. 

From 9:00 a.m. to 12 noon on Saturday, June 15, at Oakdale Lake, volunteers will learn to test the water, discover pH, and use ecology tools, in preparation for participating in three testing events planned for this summer. According to Friends of Oakdale Lake, training to become a citizen scientist is "super fun and simple and educational and helpful" and appropriate for all ages. For more information, email


  1. From the beach, Oakdale lake is the most uninviting I have ever seen it in 9 years. I used to swim in Oakdale regularly but not so much anymore and maybe not at all this year unless things improve. Last summer on my second swim (of maybe 4 total swims), the water literally smelled like rotten eggs in the middle of the lake. It was bizarre and gross.
    The DSS parking lot, next to the train tracks, once held an oil depot until, I believe, the 1940's. It left behind buried oil tanks and contaminated groundwater, and the DSS building was almost unusable when it opened in the 70s or 80s because of the smell of petroleum inside. There is at least one test well on the property that the state dug but they no longer test the water.

    The water in the tiny creek that runs along the trail into the back of Oakdale from the DSS driveway is constantly discolored - red, orange, sheeny, you name it -- it is NEVER even close to being clear water. I don' think it smells, but something is wrong with it. Of course, anything in that creek will eventually make its way into Oakdale, which sits downslope just a few hundred feet away.
    Also, the water that makes its way from the DSS property to the new CSO pipe south of the Oakdale parking lot is often a nasty orange red color that leaves a rusty residue on rocks. That pipe and eventual creek lead to Underhill Pond (also fed by Oakdale), which is choked with vegetation and algae, definitely getting worse every year. Both lakes are eutrophic -- overly rich in nutrients feeding too much vegetation and algae. Basically, they are both dead, without ample oxygen to maintain the good organisms that create a healthy food chain and body of water. And they are both probably contaminated by petrol and other nasty stuff found in runoff. The aerators in Oakdale that were recently turned on are like an oxygen machine for a life-long smoker. Life support for a dying or dead lake.
    The origin of the main inlet for Oakdale is kind of a mystery (at least to me) though it definitely comes from Greenport and possibly beyond, which is a problem in itself.
    We have to find a way to stop using so much salt on the roads in the winter. (Having fewer snow storms does not count.) It's unsustainable anyway you look at it.
    Humans lived in the Hudson Valley and they left us things as they always were, something modern humans can't fathom. The Hudson River was teeming with fish when the pale faces arrived. Now a little lake feeding the Hudson River needs aerators to keep it decent enough to swim in for another year.

    1. Oops : "Humans lived in the Hudson Valley for thousands of years before 1609 and..."