Outdoor Recreation and Fishing

The Albany Water Department (AWD) offers outdoor recreation and fishing at two of its properties. This includes Six Mile Waterworks Park located in Albany, and the Basic Creek Reservoir located in Westerlo. AWD also recently “daylighted” a section of Patroon Creek located in Albany’s Tivoli Lake Preserve.

Patroon Creek in Tivoli Lake Preserve

During 2019, the green infrastructure practice of “stream daylighting” was used in Tivoli Park Preserve to restore a 1,500 foot portion of Patroon Creek to a more naturalized condition. The section of Creek previously flowed underground through a large pipe. During the process of “daylighting,” the pipe was removed and a naturalized stream corridor was constructed in its place. The new stream corridor will help reduce flooding, increase water quality through aeration, and create important habitat for various species of aquatic life and pollinator species; all the while providing a unique natural resource for the surrounding community.

About 6 miles long in total, the Patroon Creek begins in Albany’s Pine Bush Preserve and flows through Albany before entering the Hudson River at the Corning Preserve. The “daylighted” section of Patroon Creek includes a series of pools, riffles, and small waterfalls through Tivoli Lake Preserve. The Creek has much higher flow during wet weather than dry weather; and any overflow during wet weather will enter Tivoli Lake to help prevent localized flooding.

Visit Patroon Creek
A trail (consisting of a wide gravel path) is located just west of the intersection at Park Rd. and N Manning Blvd. Street parking is available and the path to the Creek is less than ¼ mile. The trail also features educational signs about aquatic life, green infrastructure and the history of the creek. By October 2020, the path near Patroon Creek will be connected to another newly improved trail within Tivoli Park Reserve

Six Mile Waterworks Park and Rensselaer Lake

Six Mile Waterworks is located on Fuller Road, just north of I-90 in the Albany's Pine Bush Preserve. The park has abundant shoreline as well as two fishing platforms. Row boats/canoes/kayaks can be launched from shore, but no gasoline or battery operated motors are allowed. The park also features picnic tables, a playground, a parking lot, and restrooms operated seasonally. No swimming or wading is permitted.
A permit from AWD is not required to fish at Six Mile Waterworks. However, a NY state fishing license is still required. Learn more about fishing at the park here.

Basic Creek Reservoir 

Fishing/Access Permit Information and Guidelines

The Basic Creek Reservoir is open from dawn to dusk, seven days a week, throughout the year. It is located in the town of Westerlo, NY

The Reservoir has much to offer for outdoor recreation. Shore fishing is the main attraction, which is stocked with American Eel, Northern Pike, Chain Pickerel, Bullheads, White Perch, Pumpkinseed, Bluegill, Bass, Black Crappie, Yellow Perch, Walleye and other species. Shoreline fishing is accessible from the parking areas and trails, as well as areas that are handicapped accessible.

Birdwatching is another popular attraction, with bald eagles and many species of migratory waterfowl and songbirds in the vicinity.

A permit is required for all access to the Basic Creek Reservoir lands. Photo ID permits will be issued at the AWD main office, located at 10 N. Enterprise Dr. Albany, NY 12204. Due to current social distancing guidelines, applicants must make an appointment before visiting the office, by calling 518-434-5300. Payments must be made by credit card or check, cash will not be accepted. A Basic Creek Reservoir information packet will be supplied to each permit holder. The information supplied in this packet will include the rules and regulations of the reservoir, a map of the recreation area, and information regarding fishing, invasive species, carry in-carry out, and other items of interest. If the permit will be utilized for access to the Basic Creek Reservoir for fishing, a valid NYS Fishing License is also required. All permit holders should look over the information and familiarize themselves with the rules and regulations of the reservoir as any violations to them will result in the forfeit of their permit for at least two years and they will not be reimbursed for the permit fee. The Basic Creek Reservoir is a “Carry In – Carry Out” facility. Ice fishing, swimming and wading is not permitted. Pets are never allowed in the water.

Fees for 2-Year Permit:
City of Albany Resident: $10.00 (With proof of residence)
Non-City Resident: $20.00
16 Years and Under: Free

For information and to obtain the Basic Creek Reservoir Access Permit please call 518.434.5300 or email water@albanyny.gov. View the permit application

Patrol of the Basic Creek Reservoir:
The Reservoir will be patrolled from dawn to dusk on a daily basis throughout the year. Guards check permits daily. The guards are required to document all persons checked and note: Full name, address, valid or expired permit, date of expiration, and reason for recreating. If a permit holder has been found to violate any of the rules or regulations, they will be given a warning for the first offense and asked to leave the premises immediately. If the permit holder has had a previous offense, their permit will be taken, they will be asked to leave the premises immediately and informed that they have forfeited their permit for two years. Offenses include, but are not limited to: Not having a current Access Permit, overfishing and littering. The Guards patrolling Basic Creek Reservoir will be supplied with an updated permit list weekly, including any violators.