The Eastern portion of the Erie Canal starts in Waterford NY, a small friendly town that hosts a huge amount of boat traffic every year. It’s at the intersection of the Erie canal and the canal that goes north to Lake Champlain and the St Lawrence Seaway. The canal systems throughout NY and in Canada have few “marinas” but many docks where you can tie up overnight for free or minimal cost. Some have no electric or restrooms, others have the works (power, water, washrooms, showers, etc).

After leaving Waterford, we stopped at Amsterdam, which has a phenomenal pedestrian bridge over the canal (Mohawk River) filled with gardens and public art. We also learned about its connection to the fateful 9/11/01 terrorist attack.  Next stops included Little Falls, Rome, and Sylvan Beach. Each a small, walkable community with its own personality, restaurants, shops and even a few grocery stores to restock! 

Piece of concrete from the Twin Towers attack
Lots of low guard gates and bridges that require us to keep our mast down on the canal systems
Beautiful mosaic in Amsterdam
The Mohawk Frasers, a bagpipe band practicing for a weekend competition

Near the west end of the Eastern section of the Erie Canal we crossed 22-mile Lake Oneida to reach Brewerton NY where we will eventually (at the end of Sept) store ’tis Grand for the upcoming winter. We bypassed it for now and headed to Three Rivers, where the next section of the Erie Canal would take you on to Buffalo NY and Lake Erie or north on the Oswego Canal to Oswego NY on Lake Ontario. We turned north toward Ontario to explore a bit of Canada before hauling the boat out for the season. But first we have to get our “papers” in order and complete the ArrivCan app before crossing the big lake!

Three Rivers intersection showing ’tis Grand heading north