Locks E-19 and E20 are the last lift locks we will take on our trek west. Locks E-21 and E-22 are descent locks going down to Oneida Lake. Oneida Lake looks like a small puddle compared to the Great Lakes but it is 20 miles long and 5.5 miles wide and must be taken serious with respect to wind and weather conditions.
Today looked like a good weather day to cross so Viridian and Dash Away were ready to go at 0645 to make the 0700 opening of E-19. The water was like a mirror this morning and the temperature was a chilly 48 deg. Speaking of a mirror, I went out last night at about 0130 and looked at the sky. The milky way looked like a huge band starting in the north and arching over to the south. I had never been this far north and looked at the Big Dipper. It was higher in the sky than I had ever seen and the North Star seemed larger and brighter. The real treat was when I looked down into the black, still, mirror like, water I could see the Big Dipper and the North Star reflected perfectly but in mirror image. What a treat!
The two trawlers and crew glided west in the early morning light on a path of perfectly still water. It was a shame to mess it up with a wake. We were still traveling in remote parts of upstate NY and there were only a few houses and fields along the way to remind us of civilization. I called E-19 on the phone and the lock master said he would have it ready for us and to just come on in and grab a line on the south wall. We did this in E-20 as well and had about a 2 hour cruise to get to locks E-21 & 22. Going down is much less turbulent that going up so we just basically let the lines slip through our hands as we slowly made our way down the last two locks east of Oneida Lake.
At Sylvan Beach, NY we entered Oneida Lake and began our 2.5 hour cruise across to Brewerton, NY and another free dock for the night. The wind was blowing out of the NW at about 10 mph and kicked up some 1-2 ft waves, but they were flattened by the trawlers as we powered across into the cool wind. Once at Brewerton we found the new concrete City Docks and tied up while Dash Away sailed on to Winter Haven Marina. This dock is only 1 year old and is in great shape. We were the only Looper boat on it and there was a local boat on the western end opposite Viridian. After resting a bit we walked over to the tavern on the bank and ordered off the Thursday Special menu and relaxed in the outside seating area that overlooked the river.
We will spend two nights here before we move 5 miles down the Oneida River to Pirate's Cove Marina for 2 more nights to wait out a passing weather system and do marina things. It is only 51 miles from here to the Canadian border. We will turn off the Erie Canal at the juncture of the Oswego River and head north to Oswego, NY on the shore of Lake Ontario. From there we will sail across Lake Ontario and into Canadian water to pick up the Trent Severn Waterway across Southern Ontario Canada, north of the Great Lakes.
That's the news and here's the views:
We are here
Today's Passage from Aqua Vino Restaurant to the City Docks in Brewerton, NY
Aqua Vino Restaurant
What a View
What is this? This is the fill/flush rate meter for the locks. The glass column lights in 3 sections from the bottom up for slow, medium of fast rate of fill or flush. Most of the time it is set to slow but there may be times when faster turnaround times are necessary.
Good ole NY Canal Boats
Crews working the dredge
It is 8.5 miles from here straight to E-20 but the earth curvature hides it
Yet another set of security gates. I think of a guillotine when we pass under one of these things
There are side dams along sprinkled all along the Erie Canal
Life is Good
E-21 going down
E-22 also going down
Entering Oneida Lake looking northwest no land in sight
Home in Brewerton, NY
City Docks in Brewerton, NY
Viridian tied for the night
(Our 32nd Wedding Anniversary)