We had a bit of a hard time finding this- and honestly the whole network of byways could be a bit better marked - but eventually we did locate the:
This byway followed along the old Erie Canal -
below- one side of the tow path has grown over mostly with bushes and the other is now a road- the canal itself - no longer used is covered with late summer algae.
you may not be able to read the badly maintained sign but it says that even as late as 1900 more than 175 boats a day passed through the closest lock-
we headed onward following the map I now had in a photo in my camera to navigate- and finally happened upon a sign!
we got out to explore and crossed a metal grate of a bridge which traveled over a waterfall-
and arrived at a pristine lock- clearly still in use-
and it didn't take us too long- LOL- to figure out this was the other side of the lock we had found on our very first afternoon of the trip- LOCK 3! And, it wasn't on the Champlain to Hudson Canal but on the Erie (just not well marked on the opposite bank) the Champlain canal is in Waterford and nearby- it was just that this was not that canal (never was - LOL- despite our belief as we started off the trip)
we laughed- this was seriously poetic- a literal full circle to match our "round trip" -
but there was more to see of canals on this side of the system - because there were a number of locks in close proximity and a road along the canal connecting them-
below- Lock 4
then several more-
this is looking down river at Lock 4 - shown a few photos above from below-
while in a parking lot figuring out exactly where we were and where we wanted to go, I spied a car with an old guy in a baseball cap sitting in another car. I went over to pick his brain and he told us he was there to watch the lock open because there were tow boats coming through this series of locks any minute now... and while we missed them heading through the Lock 4 gates, we raced back to Lock 3 to watch the process... we checked the time because from here we would need to go straight to the airport- but we couldn't pass up this opportunity for icing on the cake---
coming in to lock 3- first one and then their companions boat (they were traveling together and talking on cell phones between the boats about plans down river and stopping for lunch- LOL)
then the lights signal that the lock is closing behind them-
here you can see the upper gates closed behind them-
water begins to pump into the river below the lock in front of the lower gates
the boats begin to "sink" and then sink some more - until the level of the lower river is reached and the lower gates open and they motor through- and on down river under the same bridge I photographed on day one about an hour into the trip!
after they passed and we were headed back to the car for the final leg of the journey I caught a glimpse of an incredible spider web in one of the ladder wells along the canal-
and so our journey ended- and here is the byways map with an orange outline around all the places we went during the eight full days of ADK DART---
and now- I am heading in two days back to Florida for my last "decorating" foray- when I get back we are off to NYC for a week and then friends visit for four days and then China!!!! So as always- stay tuned for more fun and food and actually at least two plays scheduled at our local theaters before we leave for China... so lots to do!