29 August 2012

Erie Canal

Three days in Brewerton getting repairs done left us with an urge to get moving.

Ever since we left Lake Ontario, we have been stuck in 5mph or 10mph speed limit zones.  The boat needs a good run.  Fortunately for us, Lake Oneida is right up ahead.  Unfortunately, it is Saturday and there is a Bassmaster's bass tournament going on.  The lake was littered with boats.  It was just like you see on TV, the guys in their fully deckled boats and their team shirts.  We even saw one boat that had his camera man with him on the boat.  Watch for us on WFN, he did turn the camera on us for a short clip.  Anyway, we did manage a bit of a run in between bass boats.  It felt good.  A bit of vibration on the starboard side as things break themselves in.

More speed limits once we are off the lake and we push on.  Ilion, NY for the night.  Ilion's claim to fame is it is the birth place of the Remington Arms Company.  Now they have LOTS of trains passing by.  We are not used to all that night time racket.  First thing in the morning (I use that term loosely), we press on.

Brewerton to Ilion was a bit of long day and Macara is in need of a bit of land time.  I promised her that we will be off the water at a decent time.

Along the way, we pass through Little Falls.  I would love to stop here on our way home.  A picturesque little town.

Little Falls, NY
Rock climbing by the lock in Little Falls, NY

Up ahead is St. Johnsville Marina & Campsite, that has got to have something for a kid.  It's now Sunday, about 2pm, when we pull in and there is a large gathering over at the boat ramp.  Yep, another bass tournament.  Except this time they were mostly off the water, and it was weigh in time.  This was no Bassmasters tournament, but fun to watch just the same.  Macara was off the boat and gone like a shot.

To set the scene a little.
St. Johnsville Marina & Redneck Boat Club

Trying not to be too blunt, but St. Johnsville is not exactly a land of economic prosperity.  A tiny little town with a lot of store fronts empty.  What we did find was a lot of nice, down to earth people.  But, it is a small town and we stick out like a sore thumb.  

We arrive on Sunday and we drink our last two beers immediately upon arrival.  The rum is all gone.  We need to do some shopping!  There is a pharmacy just up the street.  Still getting used to the go to the pharmacy to get your beer routine.  On the way to the pharmacy is a bridge over the railway tracks and we can hear a train coming, Macara is off and running.  Remember it is a very small town, picture the three of us standing on the bridge while the train goes by.  We are starting to stick out.  Because we do a lot of walking and beer is heavy, we have a couple little collapsable carts from Westmarine.  They are awesome, but only if you are really old and can't drive or a boater.  I have it on good authority that they carry 60 cans of beer.  So, there we are, the three of us on a beautiful Sunday afternoon strolling through town with our little cart full of beer.

Monday comes and nothing happens.  Macara and I continue to attempt to fish the wire for the new wifi and cellular amps.  Kerri heads off to find a real grocery store, with her trusty little cart.  She returns successful and with a bit of a giggle.  Apparently at the grocery store, a pair of locals took great pleasure in mocking her little cart, making a very poor attempt to conceal their laughter.  What had Kerri laughing was when the one lady counters the other with "so-and-so saw her yesterday at the pharmacy with it".  

Things we liked about St. Johnsville:  Fuel was a $1/litre.  Dockage was a $1/ft.  And we found $1 draughts.  They we were tiny little 8oz or 10oz glasses, but when was the last time you ordered a $1 dollar beer?

With Monday shot, Tuesday became a travel day.  Our goal, Schenectady, NY.  The distance wasn't outrageous, especially now that we have 30mph speed limits, but I underestimated our locking time.  And the locking was no fun at all, until we met the right lockmasters.  The wind was about 20knots from the west, no problem on the water, but in the locks it was catching us from behind and putting a lot of pressure on my ropes.  Some of the ropes are pretty slimy making a grip next to impossible.  I actually missed the Canadian locks today.  Mercifully, one of the lockmasters asked "would that be easier from the helm"? Awww, happy captain!

Some boat traffic in Schenectady.  I really didn't want to wake this bunch.

Schenectady Yacht Club is as "full service" as we have seen for a while.  It even has a pool.  Just what the doctor ordered after a long day of locking.  Macara dragged our sorry butts up there, but we had a blast.  I haven't heard Kerri belly laugh like that for a long time.  Macara was in her element.  Mask, snorkel and shorty wetsuit.  She was attempting hand stands and cart-wheels underwater.  The cart-wheels were particularly humorous.  The approach above the water was text book.  As soon as her feet left the bottom it was a train wreck.  Mom could not control her laughter.

Maybe one more day here, then off to Albany.  I want off these locks before any hurricane gets a chance to flood the area.

1 comment:

  1. Hope you guys are having a great time. I'm enjoying keeping up with you travels. Looking forward to seeing more pics, especially around West Point/Bear Mountain. Was in Albany/Lake George/Saratoga areas a few years ago. Nice scenery. Would love to camp on Lake George sometime.

    Have fun