Joe from Buffalo on 8/3/2020 4:31:05 PM:
In terms of locks, when I biked last week:
Lock 12 looked the nicest and most remote, but furthest from Schenectady, about 20 miles. Locals recommended this one to stay at. From Google Maps it looks like it has decent tree/shady areas to pitch a tent.
Lock 11 is in the town of Amsterdam. I don't know if camping is allowed there but on the western end of the trail I camped very close to a small town. With school out, there were kids hanging out in the park overnight, and fishers coming very early in the morning, wouldn't recommend.
Lock 10 is sort of an industrial zone, there's a concrete plant across the street with bright lights that reach the lock and some machinery noises. Didn't seem like a great place to camp either.
We put up camp at Lock 9. There's a port-a-pottie but no other services like water or bathrooms (most of these are closed due to COVID anyway). However there is a Stewart's right up the hill open until midnight. Some fishers arrived in the morning after 6 after the sun was up. There is a bit of noise from the water rushing out the lock but it was kind of like a white noise machine to me. No trees or shade to speak of.
Hope this helps.