For the 1825 Erie Canal and again with the 1842 enlargement, two long aqueducts were constructed: one at Crescent; one at Rexford. Erie Canal crossed to the north side of the Mohawk River in Halfmoon and Clifton Park. One of the reasons was the geology, but of equal importance was the lowlands on the north side attracted the warming spring sun.
There remains plenty of snow and ice in the woods and communities along the Mohawk Towpath Byway in mid-March 2011. But if you look along the old Canal channels and towpath on the north side of the river there is very little snow and the ice is disappearing quickly. Despite record setting and persistent snow falls this winter, the March family moonlight ski is canceled. The Erie Canal rids itself of ice and snow and readies for navigation. Traffic started moving on the Erie Canal as soon as the ice was out in late March and would continue into late December when the ice would start to form.
As you are out on the Byway today, notice where the ice and snow remain and where it is gone. Also, pick out your eateries where the Irish traditional favorite, corn beef and cabbage are the special this week!