Croton-on-Hudson to Waterford, New York
Half Moon Bay Marina was a nice place on the Hudson. There were a lot of Loopers there at least 12 boats. We stayed for two nights. We took an extra day just to take a day off to get laundry done scrub the salt water off the boat (we are now in fresh water…yea) and some other chores. The Dock Master bought pizza for the Loopers and so we had a pizza party and hung out and talked with all the new people we met.
We left early to catch the ride of the rising tide. The Hudson river is beautiful there is some barge traffic and Pleasure boaters and this time of year it is normal to see many Loopers. There were a lot of interesting homes built into the hillsides and of course there is the West Point Fortress Standing Guard on this mighty River. It is a beautiful site and filled with a lot of history. It is one of the America’s first Castle’s. As we traveled there were several lighthouses as along the way. They added a lot of charm to the cruse. We passed through Albany the State Capital, which looked like the center of river power and industry. We were not able to get a good glimpse of the Capital Dome due to the buildings, but I think I saw a little bit poking out.
We stopped at Kingston and stayed at the Hudson River Maritime Museum Dock. I was a great experience and had a collection of historical artifacts related to the maritime heritage of the Hudson River and its tributaries. We learned a lot about the history of the Hudson river which was nice to know for our journey.
Our First Lock!
We went through Troy New York which meant we had to go through our first lock. The Federal Lock also known as Lock 1. We made it through with great cheers from the Lock Master and the on looking crowd! Just kidding, but Joe and I were cheering, I was dancing, and the Lock Master was laughing at us! The passage through the lock was not as bad as I expected. But imagine this, you pull your boat into a giant garage without a ceiling, with several other large boats. You tie a line around a pole or cable and back to your cleat if you are lucky and they have them, some locks only have lines that you must hold on to. The garage door closes. The Water starts to fill up and you slowly rise to the top of the lock. The Lock Master opens the front gate and you drive away. Throw in some wind, current and prop wash from the 60-foot monster in front of you controlling their boat with a joy stick and it makes it a little interesting. But then don’t forget where there is water there is algae, slim and little clam things on the wall that go crunch when you must touch the wall. I found out they were Zebra Mussels and when they come out of the water they spit water out. Not to hard or far because they are so tiny, but it was a strange sight. The walls and lines were slimy. I am glad we took the advice of experienced loopers and bought clothes for our fenders from Walmart! Yep that’s right. XL sweat pants on cylinder fenders (one leg per fender) and a tee shirt for our ball fenders. They were not a perfect fit, but we managed to have stretched them on (next time I will get 3XL).
Then we were in Waterford where we tied up at the free wall. It was the Welcome Center for the Canal system. We met several other Loopers, some new and some we had previously known. We had an Erie Canal Planning session and got ready for the next days travels.