Vischer Ferry Nature Preserve is a 600 acre preserve that encompasses a 4 mile stretch of land along the banks of the Mohawk river. A section of the old Erie canal runs through the preserve. There are trails along the towpath, and the ruins of an Clute's drydock, where canal boats were built and repaired. There are a number of hiking trails in the preserve, some of which run along the old canal towpath. There's also a canoe launch at Clute's drydock, for exploring the waterways and wetlands in the preserve.
The first thing one notices upon entering the preserve is the constant call of all types of birds. The preserve is a great birdwatching area. Great Blue Herons, with their 3 foot wingspan, are commonly found standing in the marshes here.
The main entrance to the hiking trails crosses a restored 1862 Whipple iron truss bridge. This bridge design was a standard for canal crossings along the Erie canal.
Clute's Drydock is at the eastern end of the preserve. This drydock and its associated settlement was the home of a facility for the repair and construction of canal boats. The drydock was first built by a man named Volvyder in 1825, and was re-established by Nicholas Clute in 1852. The drydock and settlement were finally abandoned in 1902. There's a canoe launch at the drydock today.
The preserve is open from dawn to dusk. It is closed one week in the fall to allow for duck hunting.
The Vischer Ferry Nature Preserve is owned by the State of New York and is managed and maintained by the Town of Clifton Park, New York.
From northbound on Interstate 87 in Albany NY, take Exit 8 (Halfmoon) onto Route 92 (Vischer's Ferry Rd / Crescent Rd). At the exit, turn left onto route 92. From southbound on Interstate 87, take Exit 8 and turn right onto route 92 (Crescent Rd).
Follow Crescent Rd. for 2.1 miles to VanVranken Rd. Turn left onto VanVranken Rd and go 1.3 miles to the intersection with Riverview Rd. The main entrance to the preserve is just on the other side of Riverview Rd. There are picnic tables here, and a map of the preserve. This entrance is also where the Whipple truss bridge is located.
From VanVranken Rd, you can also turn left on Riverview and go about 1 mile to the Clute's drydock entrance, or turn right and go about 2 miles to Ferry drive. Turn left onto Ferry drive and there's a parking area at the end.
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|Just moved here,|
We are going to check this place out later and will comment after we do. Too bad the "more pictures" link doesn't actually load more pictures, though... We saw a sign at exit 8 and were curious. Off to explore.
|Oops! Sorry. It's fixed now,|
Sorry. I wasn't aware that the "more pictures" page was broken. It's fixed now.
Have been down to the preserve many times through the main entrance over the bridge. Are there any maps available of the preserve? I would love to know where I am going. I just love it down there. It is so peacful and soothing. I know there was a book written about the preserve but it is out of print. Gloria
It's pesty me again. The "more pictures" site isn't coming up. Gloria
Hi Gloria, What do you see when you click the "More Pictures" link? (Exactly what comes up on the screen). If you like you can email me at steve _at_ placewiki.com just replace the _at_ with an @ and take out all the spaces.
Does anyone know when duck hunting season starts and ends?
Who actually owns the Preserve?