The New Croton Reservoir is a testament to both nature’s beauty and human engineering. Stretching over 2,182 acres, this reservoir is the final touchpoint in the NYC DEP Croton Watershed, culminating its journey before blending with the Hudson River.
The history of the reservoir is intertwined with New York City’s growth. The Old Croton Dam, finished in 1842, was America’s first large masonry dam, paving the way for many others in the east. Yet, as NYC burgeoned, so did its water needs. This led to the construction of the New Croton Dam or the Cornell Dam, named after the land’s previous owner, A.B. Cornell. Completed in 1907, this dam towers at over 200 feet and is responsible for the reservoir’s impressive capacity of 34 billion gallons.
Anglers flock to the reservoir, attracted by its rich fish species such as the Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass, Chain Pickerel, and Black Crappie. Notably, the reservoir boasts impressive sizes: bass can weigh up to 7 pounds and crappies can tip the scales at 3 pounds.
Adjacent to the reservoir is the Croton Gorge Park, a 97-acre expanse that offers breathtaking views of the Croton Dam and its commanding spillway. This park is not just for anglers; it’s a haven for hikers, picnickers, and winter sports enthusiasts. With direct trail access to the Old Croton Aqueduct, history, and nature enthusiasts have a lot to explore.