To make the most of the time we had between family events, we decided to limit our travel to the ports west of Macedon. Our goal became simply to reach the western end of the canal and "touch" the Niagara River. That way if our travels bring us back to these parts with Orion Jr's mast in place, we can simply start where our track left off and put her in the water with her mast up. With that lofty goal in mind, we had about 160 miles to cover and a week to do it. At 20 miles a day, it would just be exhausting.
Spencerport, Brockport, Middleport, Gasport, Lockport. Are you starting to see a pattern? We spent some time at all of them and a few more. For many of them, their prosperity as canalports in years past has given them treasures of grand main streets that still have many of the original buildings. Some of them are still bustling towns: Spencerport and Pittsford as Rochester suburbs, Brockport as a college town, Lockport with the locks and the tourist traffic, Tonawanda as a Buffalo suburb with its own industries. The rest are quieter, more rural towns: Holley, Medina, Albion, Middleport, Gasport, each to varying degrees developing the canal as a resource for their economy.
It's been fun re-connecting with friends as we travel our old neighborhood. Gary, a fellow scoutmaster and his wife Karen, joined us on a ride from Spencerport to Brockport. Carol, a friend met in our early days at Kodak, biked to meet us in Middleport and rode with us to Medina. After a Sunday brunch at her house, we managed to track down the mysterious Soldier's monument in Brockport a few days later. Dave's dad helped us through the 2 Rochester locks on the trip west to Spencerport and Mark, Cathy's J&J co-worker did the same on the way east (after biking from his house in Penfield out to Spencerport). Since we found ourselves in Spencerport on 2 successive Sunday mornings, we attended the Spencerport UMC, which we used to attend and saw many of our friends there as well.
After a few days away on the road, we'll have another week to explore before Jr has to be hauled and we head south again.