Friday, July 7, 2017

Starting the Erie Canal

July 7, 2017

      Upstate New York and the Great Lakes have had tons of rain this spring and summer and they are having a hard time keeping the canal open.  We were able to stay at the free dock in Waterford Visitor Center because the lock there, which is the first on the Waterford Flight, a series of 5 locks right together which raise boats 200 feet above the Hudson River, had just opened after being closed for a few days.  The locks close when the water is too high, or the debris gets so bad that the lock gates get stuck.  We knew that the canal  was still closed further up but we decided to get started anyway.  After navigating the Waterford flight we feel like pros!  And my fender set up is working great.
Lock 5 with the green light to go forward

 After Lock 7 we started calling ahead for a marina for the night.  There are lots of places we can tie up overnight but not many marinas for a boat our size with electricity.  One night isn’t bad, but we found out that it will be three more days till the locks above Lock 14 open.  Everything ahead was full of boats waiting for the canal to open, so we went back to Schenectady, a mile or so and found a very nice marina with a pool and grills.  While John found us golf courses and tee times for the weekend, I checked in and we’re set to enjoy our delay.

Lock 7 on the left and the dam on the Mohawk on the right which creates the upper pool.

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