Sunday, September 16, 2018

The Cayuga-Seneca Canal and Seneca Falls, NY, a little detour, September 14, 2018

We are now in the finger lake area of New York – really pretty country.  The land on both sides of the Erie contains some amazingly beautiful homes, some farms, and lots of woods.  There was one section where 4 out of 6 of the lovely homes had an in ground pool.  Of course, they all have their boat docks, some with gazebos or other fun structures.  Some have already pulled their docks out of the water for the season.  The Erie Canal closes on October 10, so any boat in the Canal will only be able to go as far as the lock on either side of their property.
along the way, some lovely bridges...
pretty views all along the way

not everyone's docks are in great shape....!

trees are starting to change!

another pretty bridge

pretty gazebo at someone's house on the Canal

bird taking off from a channel marker

gorgeous house and gazebo

another nice home


channel marker - don't go there!!

flock of ducks....

I did say there are farms!

hard to see, but several egrets in the tree

can't resist those bridges!

From the Erie Canal, you can take a smaller canal that will take you to either Seneca Lake or to Cayuga Lake.  We turned towards Seneca Lake, east of Cayuga, because we wanted to go to Seneca Falls.  The canal is quite a bit narrower than the main Erie Canal, and we traversed three locks before Seneca Falls.  Locks 2 and 3 are literally back to back, and lifted us a total of 49 feet! 
There are quite a few residences along this canal, most of which are a bit derelict looking.  In talking with someone in town as to why that might be, they said that area is very low-lying and probably folks that have property there are fairly marginal.  Who knows?  At least we do know they’re not spending any money to keep the property maintained.
The town of Seneca Falls, known as the birthplace of the Women’s Suffragette Movement, is quite lovely, and is extremely friendly to boaters.  The first morning there, I heard a large piece of equipment coming – it was a street cleaning machine, about half the size of regular garbage trucks.  It had a really nice picture of the town on the side!  Cool.  The Canal is about two stories lower than Fall Street, the first street from the Canal.  We docked right by the lower entrance to the Visitor’s Center, where there are nice restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities.  The docking and electricity are free – our favorite price!

Scenes from Seneca Falls...

The town itself is quite old with some interesting architecture.  Unfortunately, like many small American towns, many of the store fronts were vacant.  The town has mitigated the vacant look with displays in the windows, many about the women’s suffragette movement or products made locally. 
The visitor’s center had a wonderful museum which displayed the history of the town.  The town was quite an industrial/manufacturing place at one time.  They had a huge pump manufacturing plant.  One company patented and produced many foot-powered machine shop tools.  Dan is quite knowledgeable about machine tools, and showed me how one of theirs was set up by someone who didn’t know what he was doing!  Sylvania manufactured TV and radio tubes there.  I remember the TV repairman coming to our house, armed with his case that contained tubes of various sizes and function.
We did visit the Women’s Rights National Historical Park, which is quite humbling.  I hope I don’t know any women who don’t vote – those women fought so long and hard for that right!

approaching Seneca Falls

Seneca Falls in the evening

cool museum with interesting examples of their industrial past

memories of radios/TVs as they were in the past

outside the women's museum

outside wall of the women's museum

LOVE this!

statues represent folks who attended the first conference for women's suffrage

impressive collection of women who have contributed to our society in amazing ways

We enjoyed a couple of nice meals there, my favorite being at the restaurant that offered ‘Small Plates’.  Then, we made a happy discovery – the VFW Hall is right down the street.  Dan’s always welcome at those clubs, so we spent some nice time there.  On the day before we left, we went there and sat next to some guys who seemed to be all together.  Dan said “You guys look like cops!”  And, of course, they were!  Four were policemen, three of them brothers, one a friend of theirs, and the brothers’ dad.  They were there from Georgia, New Jersey, and were enjoying their annual guys get together at the dad’s place on Seneca Lake.
We were delighted to meet another Looper couple there at the dock.  We had thought about continuing on down Seneca Lake and visiting some of the many vineyards along the lake.  We were so glad we talked to this couple, because as it turns out, none of the vineyards has a dock or any way to get there except by car!  They saved us the trouble of going down the lake to be disappointed.
After two nights there, we decided to return north to the main Erie Canal and continue on westward.

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