About Tim Rowland

Tim Rowland is a columnist, author and outdoors writer living in Jay.

Reader Interactions


  1. Boreas says

    Very sad week watching this unfold with minimal, if any, media coverage. Much of the bitterness revolving around this destruction of history is that local residents and Adirondack Park residents were clearly kept in the dark about its future. There was virtually no opportunity for a potential movement to preserve/restore the vessel(s) AND the ferry service. Little information leaked to the press across the lake from the owners in Burlington. The only thing we heard was the possibility of sinking it for diving recreation. Then, a spill boom was placed around the vessel, then “dismantling” commenced with all the care and precision an excavator. The road to the dock was blocked and entry forbidden, despite your report to the contrary, although people on foot were likely not harassed.

    It would have been a nice gesture to allow residents who have been served by this vessel for generations to tip its hat with a ceremony prior to gutting it. When I moved to the area a generation ago, I could leave my porch on a hot July day, walk to the dock and onto the ferry, take a refreshing ride to BTV, shop, have lunch or dinner, and take the return ferry around dark with beautiful night skies and cool air offering respite from the heat. It was about the most affordable diversion we had. It also added to the value of living here.

    Over the years, the large ferries apparently became less profitable, and the smaller ones pushed into service. Schedules became more and more sparse while fees increased. The NY side of the lake became gradually more isolated from the only nearby cultural center. Not only did this involve mental well-being, it affected property values. Then when COVID hit the area, it provided a convenient excuse to cut the service entirely. It didn’t shut down other ferry routes.

    NYS needs to take ferry service on Lake Champlain seriously, or consider bridges. Our access to VT is throttled by purely VT interests, not NYS or local residents. In an era when unnecessary auto travel is discouraged, a 3 hour round trip in a private vehicle to BTV for some of us to access medical and other professional services, reasonable airline service – as well as cultural events and resources – is illogical. Many ports around the world are using more energy-efficient and faster ferry service by modern vessels that are as efficient as possible. If Lake Champlain Ferries is not up to the task of modernizing service to NY communities, then shouldn’t NYS take over? Indeed, where do our taxes go?

  2. ADK Camper says

    I’ve been following the dismantling of the ferry on the daily as well.

    Personally, I am glad the ship will not be scuttled in Champlain and have no problem with it being sold for scrap.

    That said, I am in full agreement that it’s not right that LCF has a monopoly on the lake and can close on a whim.

    The area needs a bridge. As you stated, VT isn’t worried about it.

    It would be nice to see just one NY politician bring up this issue.

  3. Le Bateau says

    All of the Swiss lakes have beautifully maintained boats with restaurants, sun decks, and visible boat mechanics. They run on time, making numerous stops at villages alongside every lake, and they would never abandon them to build a senseless bridge.

    The Swiss could design new boats for the Americans, who are increasingly in need of help accomplishing anything of enduring value.

    The Swiss would design an Adirondack Style port and authentic boats for the Americans.

      • S.S. S.C. C.T.M. says

        Okay. Then, the U.S.A. can invite the lowest American bidder to design a cheap, modern,ugly, steel ferry with a junk food concession stand that won’t attract any visitors, a concrete dock, and motors that fail on a regular basis so that it is compatible with the rest of America’s value system. And, all of the colleges around the Adirondacks can shut down to make sure that creative thoughts will never matter and never be applied to the Adirondacks, or elsewhere. That would be compatible.

  4. Diane Robideau says

    Great idea. All we do is let buildings rot, history is forbidden look at Aiden Lair outside Newcomb.

  5. Gerard Salem says

    The “Addi” was a beautiful vessel. Built around the same time as the Titanic. It was the oldest wood super structure ferry still operating in the United States. LCT started using it at the Essex Charlotte crossing when they were servicing the “Grand Isle ferry”. At the time I was commuting to Vermont daily. I loved that vessel. Even the restrooms were classy. I agree it would have made a great restaurant on the Lake. There aren’t that many restaurants accessible by boat on lake Champlain. I agree that LCT seems to be slowly whittling away services. For example they shut down weekend service on the Essex Charlotte crossing. State or federal subsidies should be considered to keep these vital crossings open and accessible. Kudos to the author of this article.

  6. Laura says

    We live in port Kent and yet the sign coming to port Kent say ferry to Vermont closed temporally says nothing about not reopening many people down to our camp site and around will miss the trips to Vermont

  7. Steve W Lindsey says

    This scrapping of the Adirondack was actually a watershed event in the nation as artificial reefs are now become radioactive to the Environmental Movement. Scuttling has become less and less popular as the recreational dive industry largely collapsed after The Great Recession and has shown little evidence of recovering with the pandemic and all. But the bold opposition to reefing this ferry is a first by the environmentalists such as the Conservation Law Foundation, and other green groups seeing this, will be embolden.

    The loss of the ferry also is more evidence that the Historic Movement has flatlined and may not recover for years, maybe decades. The citizenry, frightened by events beyond its control—the pandemic, economic downturns and political upheavals have made a stable future unlikely. Most of us are operating at a survival mode low on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

    Sad this conflict between historic preservationists and their near cousins the environmentalists, nominally allies, has not been covered in the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe et al.


    • Boreas says


      “Sad this conflict between historic preservationists and their near cousins the environmentalists, nominally allies, has not been covered in the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe et al.”

      From my experience this conflict is not news, so I am not surprised it is not covered much in most news media.

      Too bad the Shelburne Museum or other entity in the Adirondacks couldn’t have ended up with it and preserved the history. These old vessels were an important part of the history and economy of the Champlain Valley. I tried to drum up interest in preserving the Adirondack about a year ago when I heard about the possible scuttling of the vehicle in Burlington waters – to no avail. The Adirondack Coast residents don’t seem too concerned about losing touch with their nautical past. Too bad for the good ship Addie…

  8. Jeff Miller says

    Did the owners attempt to sell the boats, or contact preservation entities ahead of the scrap heap? Such historic vessels should have legislation to protect them from purely monetary or business decisions to destroy them.

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