Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

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Chip Hindes
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by Chip Hindes » Fri Jul 25, 2008 12:12 pm

A couple more things.

Wearing a PFD is an absolute necessity; I beilev it's requred but can't recall. If not it ought to be. As stated, the currents and eddies in the locks when they're filling and draining are treacherous, the valves are huge, and I can imagine that you could be sucked right through a valve if you were to go under.

The sides of the locks are nasty, your fenders will get nasty as well, but IMO that's better than whanging the rub rail off the sides. Being sailors, we always pulled our fenders in between locks, but realistically it's smarter to just leave them out.

In the Erie and Champlain at least, there's a 10mph speed limit between locks, designed primarily to prevent bank erosion. The lockmasters talk to each other and they time you between locks; we stopped for lunch one time and the lockmater asked us where we had been. I understand they can write you a ticket for speeding. Though I didn't see this I did hear an interesting exchange over the radio between a lockmaster and a guy (powerboater of course) who had passed us in the canal at fairly high speed. The lockimaster told him he was early and wouldn't pass him through the locks. The guy argued but the lockmaster made him wait until we got there. He ended up waiting extra long since our preferred canal speed is 7mph, 10mph being too noisy with the Tohatsu 2-stroke. I amost (but not quite) felt sorry for the guy.

Other than that the lockmasters are extremely friendly, seem to love their jobs, are willing to help and will give you great advice on where to tie up, eat, get fuel, repairs, etcetera. One insisted on showing me inside the electrical switchgear cabinet; freshly painted cabinet, varnished mahoghany with huge, highly polished copper busbars and switches. I must admit though, most lockmasters are not like the pictures James provided. That one is truly outstanding.

Alex
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by Alex » Fri Jul 25, 2008 1:09 pm

James, as I understand, you going to lake Erie. What will be next points of route?

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NiceAft
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by NiceAft » Fri Jul 25, 2008 4:30 pm

If he is going east on the canal, isn't Lake Erie to his back :?:

Ray

Alex
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by Alex » Fri Jul 25, 2008 5:10 pm

Ray, I know, I just wondering about all route. Erie Canal-Niagara River -Huron - Chicago -Illinoise River and down to TX or some another route...

James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Mon Jul 28, 2008 4:21 pm

I am going East then South on the Hudson. I am in Baldwinsville for a day or 2 and then more East. No big lakes this trip. Nice and slow, about 10 miles per day.

Post more pics when I get better conncections.

Locking through in a Mac is SOOOOOOO easy, Just tie close midship and watch the water go up or down. Untie and pole off.

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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by david12484 » Fri Aug 01, 2008 4:45 pm

Hi James,
Donna Cason...from bimini trip. David has been following your trip to Abacos and has enjoyed the photos.

I have a few questions because the Erie Canal works for me! So where exactly did you put in and did you find it a good place to do so.

David and I would like to do a two week or so trip on the erie canal so what are the best of the best places...Thinking nice canal towns with amentities like food shopping, dining out occasionally, showers...what are the biggest canal towns. We are thinking sept or october for its coolish weather.

Okay, so where are you now? We are in Rochester doing a craft show so that is why I ask...trying to fit a canal trip into my schedule.

Best,
Donna Cason

Kelly Hanson East
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by Kelly Hanson East » Sat Aug 02, 2008 3:47 pm

Donna - Im sure James will chime in but the 'big cities' on the Canal are

Buffalo
Rochester - If you are in town go to Fairport and check out the Canalside village to get a feel for that...Route 31F off 490
Syracuse
Albany

Some of the nicer places to hang are

Tonwanda - greater Metro Buffalo area and
Lockport - has a small museum of Canal history
Fairport (near Rochester)
Seneca Falls (technically the Cayuga Seneca Canal) - Womens Rights Hall of Fame and Cayuga Lake/Montezima Nature Preserve
Syracuse downtown (Onondaga Lake and downtown area)
Oswego - take a detour up to Lake Ontario and Great Lakes Sailing!!

Waterford/Albany area - Capitol District has lots of places on Canal and Hudson and the famous Flight of Five Locks - plan on 2 hours to do those, minimum!


There are more places to put in a Mac than I can start to list so thats not a big worry.

In two weeks you could do 40 miles a day and do the whole Canal of course!!!

James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Mon Aug 04, 2008 4:00 pm

Hi Donna Cason - The Canal has 2 sections East and West seperated by Rochester. There is 2 main guides, NY Canal System and Skipper Bob's. Get both. The East section has more busy towns and people sites, The West is more out of town like and more free services - showers, power, water.

I do recommend taking the mast and boom tent and bimini as it will keep the rain and sun off. Screens as well, small bugs.

Putting in. I had my boat trailered and did not have to leave a truck and trailer somewhere. Somebody may be able to tell you a good place. I will check my charts and let you know.

Any events are packed and will be hard to get dockage.

Finall got wifi, slow connection.

This trip is so smooth it is spoiling me.

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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by John McDonough » Tue Aug 05, 2008 4:25 pm

NiceAft wrote:If he is going east on the canal, isn't Lake Erie to his back :?:

Ray
Correction...My great great great great great great Uncle Christopher proved that you must Sail West to reach the East.

Just curious..What do the tolls cost .? Are the locks open 24hours.? Can I turn-off my motor and have a mule tow me.?

Kelly Hanson East
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by Kelly Hanson East » Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:14 am

James posted this above - I believe its 75 USD for the season for a Mac.

You can also buy a day pass and a week pass for less.

Locks are open 7am-10pm in high season, then cut back to close at 5pm in October. This is subject to change however, you can get up to date information by googling NY state canal and going to the official site.

Mules optional

david12484
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by david12484 » Wed Aug 06, 2008 4:56 am

Thank you James and everyone else for the info. We have the NY canal book but not other one so we will get it.

I do flat water REALLY well...it is the choppy wavey stuff that makes me really nervous (reluctant sailing wife).

We are looking forward to doing this sometime next sept/oct as time permits.

Donna Cason

James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Sat Aug 09, 2008 1:47 pm

I can understand about the choppy water and being far away from land. It takes knowing it and yourself and it does take time.

I am at the end in Waterford next to Lock 2. I hope that the internet is good enough here to update pics. I will try tomarrow.

I have been told that there is some good cruising guides for the Erie Canal in some of the Looper's guides. I will see what I can find out.

James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Sun Aug 10, 2008 12:14 pm

Erie Canal -
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Nice free dock with power, water and laundry, clock musum in town.
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Ducks +
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Interesting houses along the way -
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Paddleing for donations for summer camp for boys
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Said that they can do 12 mph
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Took a side trip to Lake Sinaca, here is lock 2 and 3 on the canal, Lock 2 is open.
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MacGregor 25 in Seneca Falls (a bit overrated)
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Lake Seneca, please note that the lake is long and can develope 5 foot very choppy seas with strong enough winds.
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Sailing
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The town of Montour Falls. I stayed at the marina at the end of the canal. This is a powerboat Marina and R/V park. enough said.
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Town hall
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The Falls
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2 mile hiking/bike trail linking 2 the towns
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The Town of Geneva at the Northern end of the lake, You can see the free wall in the middle
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Notherern end of the lake with a North wind
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James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Sun Aug 10, 2008 4:06 pm

You see all kinds of craft on the canal. Never talked to the owner.
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Tieing off my boat was easy as the beam and the stern was about the same. Real straight. I just tied onto the wench and warped around a wire, pile or wrope. Most of the time the boat just went down without any attention. Gloves are recommended and dock pole required.
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Nice town, Baldwinsville
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Free wall
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The first time that I have see wild swans.
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Turtles
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which way? I had to think about it.
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Sunrise tied to a lock wall
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Kids Playing
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Interesting church
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An MacGregor X found me in Brewerton and a local to!
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James V
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Re: Erie Canal West to East, then South to Key West

Post by James V » Sun Aug 10, 2008 4:21 pm

Oneida Lake
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Lock your boat to the dock, sometimes they come untied!
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Mine, less than $ 20
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Restored 1901 tug, can be charted with crew. This is in Sylvan Beach.
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On the wall at Sylvian Beach with some new friends, about 100 people an hour come by to see your boat.
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Good for Kids
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A Morgan 28 locking through. Just a Gloved hand for this old salt.
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Little Falls, Nice Expensive Dock Wall
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VERRY pertty Town!!! Well worth the stop
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More duck babbies
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Lock 16, out in nowhere, well worth the quite stop.
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