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Old 16-01-2010, 11:59   #16
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Originally Posted by wkd928 View Post
... boatpoker, do you have a contact number for the canal authorities? ...
NY State Canal System Phone Numbers:
Navigation & Boating Information: (518) 471-5016
Canal Tourism Information: (1-800-422-6254) 1-800-4CANAL4
Administrative Headquarters: (518) 436-2700

Pretty much everything you need to know is available at my previous link at:
New York State Canals: Excursions and Vacations: Boating on the Canal

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Old 16-01-2010, 13:19   #17
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The preferred phone number is the first one Gord gave you. When are you planning passage. The cal does not open til' May and closes in November.

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Old 17-01-2010, 01:54   #18
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so far i had only been thinking about going out of the great lakes via the St Lawrence, i had discounted the Erie canal mainly because i couldnt get any consistent info on canal depths. we had been planning towards being in Halifax by the end of october although i think the trip via the canal and ending in New York sounds ideal.
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Old 24-01-2010, 14:53   #19
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Hi wkd928,

The route you should look into if your interested in the canal is up the Hudson River, into the Erie Canal, and then west to about Syracuse, NY, and then turn north and head out the Oswego River to Lake Ontario.

The canal system has a depth of "14" feet on this route and 21' of bridge clearance. If you take the Erie Canal out to Buffalo, the draft is down to "12" feet and bridge clearance is only 15.5 feet. Its confusing, but the Oswego Canal route is the main route across the state, and thus the most generous in size.

They are constantly dredging, but unfortunately it is not 14' deep anymore. Give the canal corporation a call to get their thoughts. Barges and tugs regularly use this route, so they do try and attack the difficult spots first while dredging. If you do call, can you let us know what they say.
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Old 17-02-2010, 09:53   #20
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Hi guys, i did call the canal corp and they confirmed that a minimum draft of 12' is maintained with a farily aggressive dredging program as mentioned. they also said that it should not matter what time in the season you went but that if its a year with water shortages it can be different. Looks like we will go this way and avoid a longer trip northwards.

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