July 12, 2005 Lois McClure
Ship's Log
 
 

CREW MEMBER

Janet Gibbs grew up on Lake Champlain, and has enjoyed boating since she was very young. This is her third year working for the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, and she joins the crew of Lois McClure this week as a volunteer.

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GREETINGS FROM THE CREW!

July 12, 2005 Fort Edward, NY
Janet Gibbs

Lois McClure was tied alongside the city dock wall in Fort Edward, putting the Churchill on our port side to save space. Several boats came in for the Ft. Edward Heritage Days weekend festivities. Townspeople were most hospitable - welcoming us with black raspberries, cookies and offering to help in any way. There is much interest in the lovely "old" canal boat. So many people have family members who were part of this canal era. The fire department offered use of their facilities, which we were happy to accept.

Rains over the weekend were too much for several vendors who never even set up shop but we hosted several hundred visitors. Dozens spoke of following our progress and could hardly wait to see the canal boat in person! Fireworks on Saturday night in a dry (!!!) sky and a special breakfast at the fire station Sunday morning helped to highlight the weekend.

Predawn Monday rain threatened to deflate our spirits but by the time coffee aroma drifted through below- decks the sky was clearing, promising a fine summer day passage.

We were all packed up Sunday night so setting off in the morning went quickly. With the Churchill tied at our "hip" we let our bow free to swing out with assistance of the river current. A spring line held us and the inflatable Oocher gave pivot nudging until we were turned, freed and then on our way downstream slipping under the bridge and out of sight of our new friends.

Along the river roads people slowed to wave and toot their horns. Some followed all the way to Schuylerville. A paddlewheel tour boat came north to meet and travel with us, even through a lock.

At one point we had information that a railroad bridge might not have enough clearance for our tugboat stack. Our captain, Roger, had then made advance arrangements with the lockkeepers to lower the water level on the short stretch of the "Offending" river. It worked beautifully!! Approaching that bridge proved interesting - one train was parked the length of the bridge and then another began its crossing in time with us - the engineer slowing to wave as we passed under his moving train!! We cleared! It was a picture-worthy moment.

The Hudson River in this section is peaceful and quite beautiful with long stretches of untamed banks. It's on southward tomorrow. It has been a very hot, very sunny, glorious summer day of the grand journey!


SMALL BOAT FESTIVAL July 16 & 17!

Come see live demonstrations on boat building techniques and boat handling as local and regional builders display their hand-crafted boats all weekend. Boats of all styles - kayaks, canoes, guideboats, sailboats and row boats - will all be on display, with many available for purchase and on-water test drives!
Bring the whole family and take part in our annual Duct Tape Regatta, where you'll design, build and race your own cardboard boat, all held together with duct tape. Construction is from 11:00-1:00 with the regatta at 1:30 on Saturday.
Or participate in the Challenge Race, a 3-mile rowing and paddling event, held on Sunday.
Don't miss this family friendly event. Food will be available on site, with picnic areas around the grounds.


Phone: 802-475-2022