September 14, 2000 - Waterford, NY - N 42° 48.320’ W 73° 42.874’
The river walk at Amsterdam
We spent the night at Amsterdam lock about 100 yards from the main rail line so we woke up a few times when the freight trains went through. The next morning a minor plumbing crisis in the sanitary department delayed our departure. We went off in search of a large well stocked hardware store reportedly right by the river in a new mall. Well, it was, but a busy four lane highway and rail line all fenced off lay between it and the water. Amsterdam was building a landing and an elevated pedstrian walkway to connect the river with the mall, but we found upon hiking across the walkway that the other end was still fenced off. After wandering around on the roof of the mall for awhile we finally climbed over a low section of chain link into an elevated parking lot and found the store and plumbing parts needed.
Going under the I-87 bridge
Chris then buried himself in one of the more fragrant corners of Titania to fix the leak as we steamed on across New York State. The Mohawk on this fair early fall day was very pretty indeed. Early morning stillness made for calm waters reflecting green and a bit of red and gold foliage along shore. The river meandered back and forth and widened steadily as the day went on. At Schoharie Creek a splendid ruin of a 19th century cut stone aqueduct arched across about a third of the wide creek bed. At Schenectady we motored through the city looking up side streets at fine old brick homes. And a few miles further on the river took a bend and entered a rock walled canyon. To port angular limestone rose in a wall perhaps 200 feet above us, while to starboard a city storm sewer cascaded down a 50 foot stone cliff in a picturesque lacy white spray. The river continued to widen and as we neared Albany we ran into a scenic stretch of high rocky shoreline interspersed with wide sections of river fringed with marsh and numerous small islands. On shore a half dozen mini mansions looked down from the highlands. Except for the brown water this looked very much like a stretch of the Thousand Islands and offered several possible back water anchorages against the forested shore.
A grey morning at Guard Gate 2 with another "good old boat"
We decided to tie up at the guard gate just before the Waterford "flight". It takes about two hours to go through this series of six locks to descend about 200 feet into the Hudson Valley. Then we will have reached tidewater!