Esopus Creek



The Upper Esopus Creek watershed covers a 192 mi2 area in the South-central Catskill mountain region of southeast New York State. The entire 26-mile course of the creek flows “clockwise” in a sweeping arc from the headwaters at Winnisook Lake on Slide Mountain to the Ashokan Reservoir.

Upper Esopus Creek and its tributary network drain some of the most rugged terrain in the Catskill Mountains. There are 21 peaks greater than 3000 feet above sea level (ft asl) that are drained by this network. Among them is Slide Mountain, the highest peak in the Catskills at 4,120 ft asl. The base elevation in the watershed at Ashokan Reservoir is 633 ft asl. The resulting streams are steep erosive forces as water and sediment make the quick descent from mountain top to the base of the watershed at the reservoir. The watershed includes at least 330 miles of stream.





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Click on the links below for more maps:
Bedrock Geology
Glacial Geology
Bank Erosion
Hemlock Wooly Adelgid Locations

USGS Gage Links

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) maintains 11 continuous-recording stream gages in the Esopus Creek watershed above the Reservoir. These gages measure the stage, or height, of the water surface at a specific location, updating the measurement every 15 minutes. Click on the Station ID number of your gage of interest to receive real-time water surface data from USGS.

Station ID Station Name Drainage
Area (Mi_)
Current Period of Record
01362200 Esopus Creek @ Allaben, NY
Sep 1988 – present
01362500 Esopus Creek at Coldbrook, NY
Oct 1931 – present
013621955 Birch Cr at Big Indian
Oct 1998 – present
01362230 Diversion From Schoharie Reservoir Dec 1996 – present
0136230002 Woodland Creek above mouth at Phoenicia, NY 20.57 Oct 2003 – present
01362342 Hollow Tree Brook at Lanesville, NY 1.95 Oct 1997 – present
01362380 Stony Clove Creek nr Phoenicia, NY 31.5 Feb 1997 – present
01362497 Little Beaver Kill @ Beechford nr Mt. Tremper, NY 16.5 Oct 1997 – present

Esopus Creek Photos

Demonstration Restoration Projects

Click here for Esopus Creek Restoration Project Report

Click here for Esopus Creek Project Power Point (file size 9.6 MB)

Stony Clove:
Click here for Lanesville Demonstration Project

Stream Management Plans

Click here for Intro and links to Stream Management Plans

Click here for Watershed Overview

Click on the following links for more information:
Esopus Creek
Stony Clove
Broadstreet Hollow:

Broadstreet Hollow Restoration Project Implementation Report (2.2 Mb)

Broadstreet Hollow Restoration Project Monitoring Report (Appendix F of above report)(4.2 MB)

Ashokan Watershed Action Plan(s)

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2017-2019

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2016-2018

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2015-2017

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2014-2016

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2013-2015

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2011-2013

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2010-2012

Action Plan to Guide Stream Management Plan Implementation, 2009-2011

Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Plan Implementation Funding

Mini Grant Program – The mini grant provides up to $5000 for education, training, community programs, small projects etc. in the Ashokan Watershed. Click here for application materials.

Matching Grant Program – The matching grant provides up to $100,000 or 25% of the cost of a project (whatever is less) to either match a grant or enhance a funded project that helps to implement stream management program recommendations. Eligible categories are research, community projects, training and education, and stream projects. Click here for application materials.

Ashokan Watershed Specific Studies and Publications

Ulster County Riparian Reference Final Report 2012

Technical Data & Resources – Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program

Guide to Stream Friendly Practices for Common Streamside Projects

Glacial Geology Description

Contact Information

For information on the Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program and the principal streams, contact Leslie Zucker, Cornell Cooperative Extension – Ulster County and/or Adam Doan, Ulster County Soil and
Water District at 845-688-3047. The NYCDEP project manager is Chris Tran who can be contacted at 845-340-7852.  The program website is

Stream Management Program - Interactive Project Pages

These pages provide information on a selection of full channel stream restoration, stormwater and infrastructure, riparian buffer restoration, streambank stabilization, and floodplain restoration projects that have been constructed to meet multiple objectives including: water quality enhancement, infrastructure protection, improved flood conveyance and sediment transport, improved fish habitat, improved riparian functions and natural channel design demonstrations.