Week 2: Havoc!
July 9 and week thereof
Both the storm that knocked out the fuel dock at Donovan's Shady Harbor Marina, where we stayed on July 4, and what seemed to be many Loopers getting ready to enter the Erie Canal, helped us to abandon our original plans, skip the Erie, and continue to Troy, NY, positioning ourselves to head for Lake Champlain, then Canada.
After enjoying Troy's famous farmers market, the next day we went through the Federal Lock to what we thought would be a peaceful layover at Mechanicville, NY's wall.
Unfortunately, a second deluge dropped over night and when we woke up, it appeared that the Hudson River was about to flood the wall, putting us over the top and onto land.
Rather than wait for ruin, Capt. Phil contacted Lock Masters, checking to see whether the locks were open and if the water was low enough for us to pass under bridges. We then beat it out of Mechanicville, only to encounter Lock C 3 filled with logs and heavy branches washed into the flooded river along with turbulence.
From Lock C 3, we headed for Schuylerville, NY, the next boat bason. Upon arriving, the marina's manager wanted us to turn away because our boat was too big when considering more rain and flooding. Fortunately, he changed his mind and (very thankfully) gave us space.
As luck would have it, that evening, more rain raised the Hudson River. For the next two nights, the Hudson continued to crest and by Wednesday morning, the floating docks drifted several feet south.
The Schuylerville marina is also a camper park, with a beautiful lagoon, trees, and camper lawn. By Wednesday morning, a good portion of that lawn was flooded.
Also on Wednesday morning, we learned that all locks were closed, so by now, we had no place to go. Fortunately, we like the location, our boat is comfortable, and we feel perfectly at ease, even though New York and Vermont were flooding.
As for atmosphere and temperature, Thursday was a perfect day which we celebrated by eating at the restaurant next to the marina. By around 7 PM, however, the rain returned along with emergency warnings.
The piers at our marina are not strongly connected to land, so as the sky darkened, Phil lashed our boat up more tightly. Then, within 15 minutes of him getting back on the boat, everything slacked off.
On Friday the atmosphere was again perfect, marina management was busy fixing the piers, and we continued to wait for word that the locks were re-opening while eating cream cheese and crackers.
By Saturday, July 15, all the locks were cleared, the day was perfect, and we left Schuylerville to go to Ft. Edward, home of one of the state's best brew pubs.
While for us, the Schuyler Yacht Basin was our home during the flood, the marina was a peaceful harbor and the small city was pleasant. The city and area is known for its popular RV camping sites and the downtown tidy, but not many shops. It seems to be closed until 4 in the afternoon on most days.
The marina's managers, Terry and Dan, were lifetime residents of the area and love living there, however, marina will have new managers next year. They will be back to visit in 2024, so if you see them around, say "hi" from Karen and Phil.
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