Locking our Way up the Rideau – 7/8/16

First of All -

  • First combination swing bridge/lock gate encountered
  • First time seeing 4 water skiers being towed by a single boat
  • First time having to clear aquatic weeds from the outboard lower unit
  • First time seeing a guy cutting aquatic weeds around his dock

Namely Speaking-

  • Kars
  • McGahey’s Bend
  • Kemptville
  • Burritts Rapids

Loop Log:

  • Miles Cruised today: Power: 35; Sail: NA
  • Total Miles Cruised to date: 5,603
  • Hours Underway: 8
  • Fuel: NA
  • Morning House Battery Reading: 12.53
  • Wind Speed: 10; Wind Direction: NE
  • Daily High Temperature: 73
  • Water Temperature: 77

DSCF5207It’s time to make some miles up the Rideau. The first few miles are in a dug canal and we soon encounter the first of 9 locks ascended in the course of the day. The lifts are moderate, only 10 or 12 feet in each lock. Locks 9 and 10 are flight locks, with the first chamber opening directly into the next. A little further on we pass through a lock which has a road swing bridge crossing integrated as part of the lock gate. Most of the days run is in the Rideau River channel, with locks creating navigable depths and enabling us to get past historicDSCF5212 rapids. We quickly leave the suburbs of Ottawa behind, and begin cruising through a pretty, pastoral landscape which alternates between natural wetlands and farmland, with scattered riverfront homes mixed in. The locks are mostly hand operated, and the canal workers are friendly and helpful. One gives us a good suggestion for a destination, telling us that we should be able to make Burritts Rapids by 5pm. He ends up being right on. The Burritts lock is our 9th of the day, and once we clear the chamber, the lock workers help us get secured to the wall for the night. The lock building has nice, clean restrooms which are open all night, and the grounds themselves are grassy and shaded by lovely trees. A nice restaurant is just across the street. In addition to a nice dinner menu they sell ice, have wifi, and even offer laundry and showers for passing boaters. We have no need for the latter, but it’s still nice to know that such services are available. We share this pleasant spot with half a dozen other boats who are, like us, traveling along the Rideau. Tomorrow we may only go a few miles, up to Merrickville, since rain and possible thundershowers are in the forecast. Depending on the weather, we might just go up to there and hang out for the balance of the day, waiting for better weather. We have no interest in standing out in a rainstorm while going through a lock, and I’m sure the lock workers would be less than pleased with us if we showed up during a downpour.

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