Earlier this summer we completed a trip from Buffalo to Oswego on the canals. That trip is all down hill and the down hill locks are easy. The water drains out and tends to pull the boat away from the wall.
Each lock has lines, cables
amd/or ladders that you hold on to as you lock through. After entering the lock stop at one of these and hold on.
Have at least 2 boat hooks. Preferably ones that float. One of mine is sitting on the bottom of a lock. Oh well. Cheap
work gloves are essential, the locks are really slimy and muddy.
The lock master can control the rate water enters or leaves the lock. If he sees you are by yourself, he can slow the water entering the lock to keep the turbulence down making it easier to control the boat.
Can you do the trip by yourself? Probably, although it would be easier with an extra hand. When we went through the locks there were times that either my wife or I controlled the boat by ourselves for one reason or another.
Know how your boat likes to dock
. It is much easier for me to dock
port side to, so when I always went to the port side of the lock. No use fighting that prop wash. By the time to get to Oswego, you will be a master at docking
I lived on Oneida Lake for 10 years, it can be nasty or a mill pond. Pick your weather
window carefully. Fortunately is is only 22 miles long. If the wind
has any west in it and is above about 12Kts, it can get choppy. In a SW wind
you can skirt the south shore for quite a while, but you do want to have a good chart or chart plotter so you can find the shoals the easy painless way. Take advantage of the early morning when the wind tends to be lighter. This time of year you won't have to worry about the fools in cigarette boats.
is hard to come by on the canal. I think you can buy it in Sylvan Beach (east end of Oneida Lake) not sure where else between Albany and Oswego.