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Old 01-28-2018, 10:49 PM   #1
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Lake Champlain

Hi all,

We're planning to take our 2018 vacation to Lake Champlain from about 20 miles south on the Hudson River of Albany this summer.

We are looking to spend 10-14 days exploring the Lake and maybe seeing the sea monster! We will depart Shady Harbor marina the night before and pre stage at the docks at Waterford, knowing that we'll need to make it thru the next 11 locks to get to Whitehall.

We are looking for any recommendations on the entire journey to include where to stay on the hook vs at a marina. We're planning on the last the two weeks of August for this journey, in a Mainship 430 aft cabin trawler (48' LOA).

Thanks,

Jim
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Old 01-29-2018, 12:02 AM   #2
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Sounds like a great trip! Will be going through Champlain in 2020 on the way to the Canadian canals.

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Old 01-29-2018, 09:13 AM   #3
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We went thru there in 2013.
Valcour Island has a couple of nice anchorages, and you can do some exploring on the Island and in the dink.
We also stayed at Rouses point marina (northern end of the lake) and it was nice, the owners were friendly, and it was a great last stop before entering Canada.
There are also a few nice areas to stay in the canal, so don't think you have to "make it thru" in one day. We stayed in Schulyerville, it was ok, we bypassed Ft Edward only because the water was rising and we had to make it under a 17 ft bridge, and I think Mechanicville had some free docks also.
Enjoy!
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Old 01-29-2018, 12:53 PM   #4
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Shady Harbor is a great way to start the trip. Brian and Kathy are great hosts and can start you out right.

We have done that trip twice and have friends that do it every year. Make sure you stop a few days at Burlington Boathouse on Lake Champlain. They have wonderful facilities and service just make sure you book ahead. Its a fantastic food lovers destination. Hen of the Wood is one of our favorites along with Flat Bread Pizza.

When locking Schuylerville Yacht Basin is a nice place to stay and visit overnight. Definitely visit the Saratoga Monument. The Dove Gate Inn does an excellent job with dinner. White Hall Town docks are a good place to stay. The entire trip is rich with US history so take your time to explore.
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Old 01-29-2018, 02:15 PM   #5
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We were up there last summer. We anchored on the north side of Ticonderoga. There is a dinghy dock and a beach landing . It is a bit of a walk up to the fort but worth it. If you anchor on the south side of the fort you have to scramble up the bluff through brush and stones, we could not see any discernible path,. Take a dinghy up La Chute to the village. In the cove north of Basin Harbor there are moorings. Pay at Basin Harbor Club. There is a great Maritime Museum here. Virgennes is lovely. We were up there in early June and the transient floats were not in the water yet. We tied to the wall. By August though it may be tough to get a spot to tie up. Shelburn Shipyard has good fuel prices. Burlington is a lovely town. Worth a couple of days visit. Malletts By we found to be Meh. The Inland Sea is lovely with many nice anchorages. We stayed at Burton Island State Park for two days due to wind and rain. Note: in the "Gut" the weeds are so bad, that they literally fouled our prop and stopped us dead as we made or way slowly across the gut waiting for the time for the bridge to open. , and we had to back and fill to clear them. Last summer the bridge opened on the hour and the half hour. Check to be sure, and then only enter the gut when you are close to bridge time so you can keep up your speed and keep the wheel clean. Valcour island is a great place with many protected anchorages no matter what wind direction. Sloop Bay has a trick. The north shore has a hard bottom and you cannot get a good anchor set but the south side of the same anchorage is fine with good holding. We were early in the season and we had several times that we were unable to move due to weather. We missed a lot, so this summer we are going to do the so called Triangle loop and hit Champlain again on our way back south.
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Old 01-29-2018, 05:22 PM   #6
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Deep Bay N of Plattsburg has moorings at the State Park. Nice spot.
Burlington worth a stop. Either at docks...need reservations ahead... or they have moorings and dingy dock.
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Old 01-29-2018, 05:26 PM   #7
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There used to be a spirited political discussion at Chipman's Point Marina every night.

Of course, now there is not much to talk about.
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Old 01-30-2018, 05:30 PM   #8
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I have read from several reliable sources that boating on Lake Champlain you are required to not only padlock any waste Y valves but actually remove your sanitation hoses from their tanks, valves, etc.

I don't know if someone actually boards and inspects your boat or not and I haven't been there so if anyone has the facts, pleas chime in.

And I don't know if there are restrictions on grey water discharge.
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Old 01-30-2018, 07:04 PM   #9
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The regs do state hose removal but some have questioned the enforceability.
There are references that seem to imply no discharge... even gray but that is not true.
There are several posts concerning this search for lake Champlain and they should turn up.
Not aware of any boardings to confirm hose removal.
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Old 01-30-2018, 09:17 PM   #10
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I agree that there's no need to race through the locks. You might find some good info on my blog of our 2016 Down East Loop trip. This link starts at Albany and you can follow along all the way up to the Canadian border. We didn't spend as much time in the Lake as I'd wanted.

As for the monster, you can't miss it.
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Old 01-31-2018, 10:43 AM   #11
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The regs do state hose removal but some have questioned the enforceability.
There are references that seem to imply no discharge... even gray but that is not true.
There are several posts concerning this search for lake Champlain and they should turn up.
Not aware of any boardings to confirm hose removal.
I would want to know for certain before I cruised onto the lake.

As it is, I'm planning a cruise north this year but my plan is to cruise the Erie Canal, not Lake Champlain, partly because of the hose removal requirement possibility.
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Old 01-31-2018, 12:28 PM   #12
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I don't know where your reading this but your either misreading the regulation or it is intentionally misleading. Being navigable from the sea Federal discharge rules are in effect . No discharge of sewage and if equipped y valve must be locked/tied to prevent overboard discharge. Grey water is allowed to be discharged overboard.

There are some landlocked lakes in NY state that grey water discharge is prohibited and hoses must be disconnected or thru hauls plugged.
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Old 01-31-2018, 12:42 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by johnrupp View Post
I don't know where your reading this but your either misreading the regulation or it is intentionally misleading. Being navigable from the sea Federal discharge rules are in effect . No discharge of sewage and if equipped y valve must be locked/tied to prevent overboard discharge. Grey water is allowed to be discharged overboard.

There are some landlocked lakes in NY state that grey water discharge is prohibited and hoses must be disconnected or thru hauls plugged.

I'm not an attorney, but from what I have read I agree that the state law is in conflict with federal law. But, until someone challenges it in court and gets it overturned, it stands. When we did the downeast loop back in approx 2012, we did not go through Champlain because there were recent reports of boat inspections and forced correction before the boat could be operated. They are very effectively driving away business with this policy which pains me as a Vermont home owner and tax payer.
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Old 01-31-2018, 01:11 PM   #14
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Peter,

Having extensively cruised the NYS canal system a few years ago I had the same concerns. In reviewing all the published material I could, nowhere could I find where it actually said that grey water discharge was prohibited on Lake Champlain. Some of the literature was in my opinion intentionally misleading.

I had no issues when there and when I asked many locals they had no idea what I was talking about.

I do know this had been an internet conversation/debate for at least the last 15 or more years.

I would love to see if anyone could come up with a copy of the law which actually show LC as being a no grew water body of water.

John
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Old 01-31-2018, 01:19 PM   #15
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The latest changes I have seen/found is when the Feds made not only LC and the LI Sound and other areas north of LIS a no discharge zone. As in no sewage discharged regardless if it's treated or not.

John
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Old 01-31-2018, 04:19 PM   #16
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I have been through Lake Champlain a few times and no one ever bothered me about the black water discharge hose.
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Old 01-31-2018, 08:09 PM   #17
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I have been through Lake Champlain a few times and no one ever bothered me about the black water discharge hose.
That's fine but it does not mean it's not illegal and it doesn't mean another boater will not be stopped and forced to disconnect his plumbing. On my boat, that's not a simple job.

We all know that discharge of black water is illegal within three (more in some areas) miles of shore and we know we have to wire our discharge handles shut, remove the handles or other "effective means" of preventing accidental discharge of sewage. What is in question here is the possible requirement to actually disconnect the hoses from the pumps or thru hulls.

And the question of discharge of grey water (water from sinks and showers).
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Old 01-31-2018, 08:52 PM   #18
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Here are a couple other threads with specific references cited.
Grey water discharge is NOT an issue - There is an implied no discharge printed in a brochure but it is NOT codified in law
the need to disconnect black hose vs lock out is the controversial issue. It is in NY regs but the legality vs Fed law is the problem if challenged.

MiniLoop Hudson River

Gray Water Discharge

Overboard Discharge
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Old 01-31-2018, 09:39 PM   #19
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Peter,

Having extensively cruised the NYS canal system a few years ago I had the same concerns. In reviewing all the published material I could, nowhere could I find where it actually said that grey water discharge was prohibited on Lake Champlain. Some of the literature was in my opinion intentionally misleading.

I had no issues when there and when I asked many locals they had no idea what I was talking about.

I do know this had been an internet conversation/debate for at least the last 15 or more years.

I would love to see if anyone could come up with a copy of the law which actually show LC as being a no grew water body of water.

John

I was referring to the requirement to physically disconnect the black water discharge. I should have been clearer.
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Old 01-31-2018, 09:44 PM   #20
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More importantly, congrats on your newly ordered vessel.
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