Construction delays affect boating on Saranac Chain

Boaters should expect delays, limited launching access at Second Pond boat launch, Upper Locks

The state Department of Environmental Conservation Friday announced an ongoing construction project at the Upper Locks on the Saranac Chain of Lakes is causing launch delays at the construction loading zone at the Second Pond boat launch. Rehabilitation of the Upper Locks began in 2023 and is expected to conclude this summer.

The Upper Locks are closed for all public use, although paddlers are able to carry around the work area. When portaging, paddlers should exercise caution, heed signs, and avoid the fenced-in active work zone area.

At the Second Pond boat launch, the safety protocol for lifting of material and crossing of machinery will cause substantial delays in launching for members of the public. The downstream “right” side of dock will be closed to public use during active work hours Monday through Saturday until the project is complete. Boaters launching at this site will only be permitted to launch and take out on the upstream “left” side dock. All boaters, especially paddlers, should be cautious when launching and taking out as the wake of the contractors’ landing craft at low speeds in the river may be larger than normal due to the heavy loads carried.

Boaters should consider alternative launches and waterbodies for the duration of construction. For a list of boat launch sites by county, visit dec.ny.gov/things-to-do/boating/launch-sites.


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