Our Top 3
Although we enjoyed virtually all of our trip through the canals, we thought we’d list our top three places that we stayed.
#3… Phoenix, NY
Phoenix is probably best known as the home of the Bridge House Brats, a group of youngsters that frequent the dock area, assisting visiting boaters with various tasks. The area offers free dockage, electricity, water and Wi-Fi. We were greeted when we arrived by several youths who took our lines to help us tie up. We were also served some breakfast by another lad at one of the patio tables they have on the dock.
Negatives? The dock area was an evening hangout by almost a dozen teens. They weren’t bad kids, spending their time fishing primarily, but they were all around a neighboring boat and had it been mine, I wouldn’t have been too happy about the noisy company.
#2… Sylvan Beach, NY
Sylvan Beach is on the eastern end of Lake Oneida. With a full-time midway right by the docks and a nice beach to swim on, it was a great stopover. There was free dockage but no electricity or water. I think I managed to scrounge a Wi-Fi signal with my hi-power amplifier, but there were no easily accessible free signals. We enjoyed the whole town, including the nearby park, bars and restaurants.
Negatives: No amenities beyond the free dockage. Electricity, water and Wi-Fi would have been appreciated.
#1… Waterford, NY
Waterford should give seminars to those towns looking to increase their boating traffic! They offer free dockage, water, electricity, Wi-Fi, Showers and a visitor center. There are stores, restaurants and bars a short walk away. The nearby grocery store even allows visiting boaters to take their shopping carts back to the marina and leave them there, to be picked up by a store employee at some point in the future. Add to this an overall friendly atmosphere on the docks, it is obvious that the people at Waterford appreciate the boating visitors and want to encourage them to come back. Waterford gets our top marks!
Negatives: If I have to pick one, and this is really just a tiny thing, there is a bit of a wake created each time Lock #2 dumps its water. For this reason I would recommend docking closer to the end of the dock away from the lock as opposed to right beside it.