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The imp in my head wants to mess with the title and permutate this to “tugmotives and locoboats,” and I’m guessing way back when power began to be applied to hulls, there were those who thought they were seeing “loco boats” but I digress.  First, a historical photo to set the context.

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Just east of local 19, here’s Margot pushing a barge underneath the main line.  I don’t know the exact number, but these rails cross over the canal at least a half dozen times between Waterford and Tonawanda.

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As you’ll see in most of the next photos, it’s hard to get a photo of a complete tug and a complete locomotive if you happen to be moving on one of the other.  Difficulty notwithstanding, I kept on trying.

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With a drone I could have gotten the locomotive . . .

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or the rest of the tugboat.

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I know there’s no locomotive in sight, but the boxcars were colorful.

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Here’s an ALCO-built Genesee Valley locomotive, which may have been built at the Schenectady plant, itself once right on the south bank on the Canal.

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We had to wait at the top of lock 19 and my camera was ready, but no trains came.  As soon as we descended and started heading eastward . . . one passed.

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When one passed right near us, of course it was backlit.

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I took this shot from the upper wheelhouse.

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So at the end of the season, I had to conclude this was my loco-tug moneyshot, which had to be taken from neither.

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All photos by Will Van Dorp, whose focus will soon be leaving the canal.  Having said that, part of me wants to get back up there when the water levels are drawn down and the snow covers the ground.   Click here for some history of the relations rail/canal in the first quarter century after the opening of the waterway.  Click here for a basic introduction to the canal levels monitoring from the state hydrologist.

 

Some areas along the NYS Canals evoke tropical forests . . .

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Some bridges are so low even today that we approach dead slow, jackstaff–our measure of minimum clearance–ready to signal full astern.

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Many places along the canal offer a parallel path for the railroad like

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this automobile train pulled by Union Pacific locomotives.

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If it seems I have paid more attention to these canal banks than others, it’s true, because these are in the county where I grew up and first caught a fish.  Click here for close-ups of this former Agway and beet refining complex.

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These abandoned scows lie within 250 feet of Rte. 31, but I’d never seen them until I took the canal.

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Click here to see the large number of posts I’ve done on this 1912 tug I call Grouper.

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When this creature stands at the end of a dock like this, I’m happy to comply.

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So far, west of Palmyra, I’ve seen the most fabulous bike trails.

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More trains and

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And finally, just east of Fairport, I love this garden with repurposed metal “sculpture” that includes two harps.

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All photos taken by Will Van Dorp.

 

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