Monday, June 18, 2018

Westport to Kingston

Sunday, June 17

It's Father's Day in Canada, too! The locks on the Rideau have extended hours on the weekends, so we took full advantage. We finished the Rideau Canal Waterway- 44 miles and 14 locks in 9 hours today. We are done with this waterway and its 49 locks, which is more like an obstacle course than a cruising area.  But, we still have the Trent-Severn Waterway ahead, which has another 45 locks.

At the Newboro Lock we started to descend on the canal instead of rising. It was downhill the rest of the day.

One of the hand cranks used to open and close the lock gates

The most interesting locks were the flight of 4 at Jones Falls. While we waited we had time to explore the history exhibits that were open- first a working blacksmith who was making nails.

She explained the meaning of the phrase "smash to smithereens" - smithereens are the tiny bits of iron that fall off the item being shaped on the anvil, in the smithy.

We also toured the lock master's house museum, set up as it looked in the 1830's.

Mara Beel tied up on the Blue Line, waiting for the lock to open.

The scenery varied along the waterway today. We enjoy the granite lining the shores. We went from lake to lake via narrow passages connecting larger bodies of water.

Speed limit 10K, No Wake, keep to the left of the green marker 

One of the narrow connecting waterways:

After a while the surrounding area turned to marsh and was very shallow for about 8 miles. It wasn't pretty scenery, but it is a nesting area for swans.

These are a welcome sight after the zillion Canada Geese that are everywhere. We saw a group of geese at our first lock of the day that had flown in the previous evening. The lock chamber was too small to allow the geese to leave, because they need enough space to take off. They had to be content with spending the night inside the lock. As soon as the gate opened at 9 a.m. they swam out. By the way, the Canadian people watching with us told us they refer to these birds as "American Geese".  Nice.  None of us like dodging all the goose poop littering the grounds!

We arrived at the LaSalle Causeway Swing Bridge in Kingston just in time for its hourly opening at 5 p.m. From there it was a half mile or so to our berth at the Confederation Basin marina. We were assigned a slip next to another Ranger Tug, Scotfree, our big sister at 29'. Leon and Karen are also Loopers and will finish at Sau Ste. Marie. We had docktails with them, Bill on Chip Ahoy,  and Robert and Caroline (who we met in NY) on Sauvy B, all Loopers. We are all spending an extra day in Kingston due to weather. We all need to cross a small but significant stretch of Lake Ontario when we leave here- today there is a southwest wind at 15 knots with gusts to 50 and thunderstorms. No boater wants 3 foot beam waves!

After eating breakfast in a mom and pop restaurant- home fries!! - we walked to a nearby grocery store for fresh produce, a wine store, and a bakery. Seven buses unloaded tourists in the park next to the marina. Apparently Canada is a popular destination for Japanese travelers. We noticed a surprising number of panhandlers on the streets downtown- perhaps taking advantage of the influx of tourists.

We cleaned out the strainers on our cooling system again, since we sucked up a lot of grass that was floating in the locks yesterday. The grass can clog the water intake causing the engine to heat up so we need to keep it free of debris. It's a poorly designed system, but that can't be helped.

Our next stop will be Trenton.

1 comment:

  1. Glad you are being careful. Hope you like the Trent Severn Canal.
    Wonderful photos as usual!