Powerstation Road, Schaghticoke, NY (#17) to Hudson River Lock 4, Stillwater, NY (#18)
#17 Access: From the north, Rts. 67 and 40 and the Schaghticoke Fairgrounds, go south on NY Rt. 40 about 1.1 miles to Chestnut Street on the right. From the south, where NY Route 67 leaves NY Rt. 40 at the traffic light, go north about one-half mile to Chestnut Street on the left. Access signs are on that corner. Take Chestnut Street west, and bear left on Powerhouse Road. Stay on Powerhouse (it will become dirt, and cross a beautiful bridge) to its end at the signed parking area at the Brookfield Power substation. Limited parking, 3-4 vehicles.
Riffles, high banks, and impressive scenery reward floaters early on this reach. Downstream of Tomhannock Creek, the river slows its course, flowing through open farm fields and winding between gravel bars. The Hoosic becomes wide and shallow here, and may be hard to navigate in low water.
Floaters can end their journey in one of two places. The waters of the Champlain Canal’s Lock Four join those of the Hoosic at an easily seen shale-y point on river right (#17), the terminus of a path leading from Lock Four State Park to the river. The path is the most frequently used take-out route here. (After a short haul uphill from the river, it levels out for an easy ten-minute carry to the parking area. The oak woods on this point shelter a variety of native woodland plants, some of them uncommon.)
When water levels are appropriate (they fluctuate according to the needs of a utility downstream), floaters can bear right around the point and into the lock itself. The ride upstream through the lock is free.
#18 Access: Lock Four State Park is located just south of the Stillwater bridge over the lock and the Hudson. Be aware that the Park is open seasonally, and that the park gate is locked at 4:30 pm. The path to the point begins where the park road bears west toward the lock structures.