About Zachary Matson

Zachary Matson has been an environmental reporter for the Explorer since October 2021. He is focused on the many issues impacting water and the people, plants and wildlife that rely on it in the Adirondack Park. Zach worked at daily newspapers in Missouri, Arizona and New York for nearly a decade, most recently working as the education reporter for six years at the Daily Gazette in Schenectady.

Reader Interactions


  1. Greg M says

    “one Champlain Canal lock closed would have minimal impact on canal users”

    Huh? The lock is a chain…without every link working it is no longer a canal – but two separate canals. Closing should be a non-starter without having a travel lift ready to get boats around. If there is no through traffic, why is the Canal Authority paying/up-keeping all the infrastructure that is not needed for small local boaters? If we close a lock…it really should to be all/nothing.

    The Big Chute Marine Railway is a solution used elsewhere and more complex than needed here for recreational traffic — though that would kill the little remaining commercial traffic.

    Further, the Glens Falls Feeder Canal is Hudson water used at the high-point and flows water east into Lake Champlain. Turning this off means there is not enough water to run the northern canal. This is more complex than just leaving a set of doors closed as some would want to believe.

  2. Mary Finelli says

    “’The round goby is a threat directly to the sport fishery'”

    Fishing isn’t sport, the fish are victims not willing participants. Science has shown that fishes can suffer fear and pain. They are sentient beings who deserve respect and compassion not gratuitous cruelty.
    Additionally, fishing is another major way that species are transferred to non-native environments.

  3. Rick Castle says

    Closing the canal should not be an option. It is not like closing a highway and detouring a couple of miles around. This closure would force boat traffic up the Atlantic coast to the St. Lawrence River or out the Erie Canal and back through the Great Lakes, and St. Lawrence and Richelieu Rivers. This is a detour of hundreds of miles, weeks of travel, thousands of dollars and not even manageable for some smaller boats.

    Also, according to your own article, these invasive fish are already in the St. Lawrence River. Some quick research shows that they are not only in the St. Lawrence River but also in the Richelieu River and the Chambly Canal which connect directly to Lake Champlain. Closing the Champlain Canal may block that avenue or ingress for them but is Canada taking similar steps? If not then closure of the Champlain Canal is a moot point.

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