CROTON DAM PLAZA PARK
Westchester County, NY


Directions:

Saw Mill Parkway north to exit for Hawthorn; left turn at light onto Route 9A north (which empties into Route 9 north); get off at exit for Croton Point; turn right; at the light turn left onto Riverside; turn right onto Route 129; just after the green mileage marker 10 22 bear right off the road and onto the park entrance road. (In season there is a fee.) Drive over the small bridge and park in the parking area.


History:

The old Croton Dam and gate house (located under the old Croton Dam bridge) were flooded over by the new reservoir. The New Croton Dam appeared in 1907.

(P. 31. Linda Cooper and Alice Roker. 2003. Images of America: Yorktown. Charleston, SC: Arcadia.)


Facilities:

Picnic tables by the falls over the dam; play ground; ball field; short hikes.


Trails:

4/12/00.  There is a rectangular walk you can take around the park area. You can also walk down by the stream. Or you can take the gravel path (marked authorized vehicles only); it soon splits into a high road and a low road; I walked the low road for 15 minutes or so and came to a private house at which time I turned back and returned the way I came. Along the way I went under a big power line. Part of the path goes through a big plantation of white pine trees. Also here are a lot of the very invasive Japanese barberry shrub.

By the water there are lots of American sycamore trees. Also nearby are a lot of black locust trees.

10/16/03. Pick up the white circle trail that goes along side the Croton River riverbank. Go through a hemlock grove; pass under a power cut, trail heads uphill; come to a old stone shed and then to a Keep Out sign; turn around and go uphill on the white circle trail; come to a house; a sign points to go further uphill to the Croton Aqueduct State Historical Park trail; take that trail back to near the Croton dam; see three yellow circles for the yellow trail. Look for the Briarcliff-Peekskill Trail but cannot find it; descend steeply downhill on an unofficial trail; return to the parking lot.


PLANT LIST:
Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer platanoides (Norway maple) 4/12/2000
Acer rubrum (red maple) 4/12/2000
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree of heaven)
Aralia spinosa (devil's walking stick)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Gleditsia triacanthos (honey locust)
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Morus alba (white mulberry)
Ostrya virginiana (American hop hornbeam)
Picea abies (Norway spruce)
Pinus strobus (white pine)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Pyrus sp. (Crab apple)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus rubra (red oak) 4/12/2000
Quercus velutina (black oak)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust)
Salix nigra? (black willow)? 4/12/2000
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Thuja occidentalis (arbor vitae) hort.
Tilia americana (American basswood)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus americana (American elm) in fruit 4/12/2000

Shrubs:
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Elaeagnus umbellata (autumn olive)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Forsythia sp. (golden bells) 4/12/2000
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Ligustrum sp. (privet)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush) 4/12/2000
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)
Pachysandra terminalis (pachysandra) 4/12/2000
Rhodotypos scandens (jetbead)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry)
Salix discolor (pussy willow)? 4/12/2000
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum )
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum)
Viburnum sieboldii (Siebold's viburnum)
Vinca minor (periwinkle) 4/12/2000

Vines:
Calystegia sepium (hedge bindweed)
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Euonymus fortunii (Fortune's euonymus)
Hedera helix (English ivy)
Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle)
Menispermum canadense (Canada moonseed)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Solanum dulcamara (bittersweet nightshade)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vincetoxicum nigrum (black swallowtail vine)
Vitis sp. (grape vine)
Wisteria sp. (wisteria)

Herbs:
Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Allium vineale (field garlic)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Asparagus officinalis (common asparagus)
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster) 10/16/03
Aster spp. (asters) 10/16/03
Cichorium intybus (chicory) 10/16/03
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) 10/16/03
Geum canadense (white avens)
Lepidium virginicum (poor man's pepper)
Oxalis sp. (yellow wood sorrel)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed) 10/16/03
Polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese knotweed)
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal)
Pycnanthemum sp. (mountain mint)
Stellaria media (common chickweed)
Taraxacum officinale (dandelion) 4/12/2000
Trifolium pratense (red clover) 10/16/03
Viola sp. (violet)

Rushes:
Juncus tenuis (path rush)

Sedges:
Carex laxiflora type (loose-flowered sedge type)
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)

Grasses:
Andropogon gerardii (turkey claw)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)
Schizachyrium scoparium (little blue stem grass)
Setaria glauca (yellow foxtail grass)
Tridens flavus (purple top grass)

Ferns:
Equisetum hyemale (scouring rush)
Asplenium platyneuron (ebony spleenwort)
Dryopteris marginalis (marginal woodfern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)