July 29, 2012

July 29, 2012  Day 79                 Orillia                 Total miles to date:  1459.7 

Today is our last day at the Port of Orillia Marina. We used it to catch up more chart plotting, laundry, and major grocery shopping. The store is about 2 blocks from the marina and we took advantage of that proximity and the fact that it was a big store.
We did cook the peameal bacon for a late breakfast and agree it was awesome! We skipped lunch and then had tortellini for dinner.

Sarah and Brooks, Our Time, came over after dinner to visit and to discuss our next trip which includes the Big Chute, the Marine Railway Car that will transport us 600 feet by using a sling under the boat and then put us back in the water.  We will do the Big Chute in the next few days – Tuesday if the weather holds.

We will not have wifi again for a few days – probably Friday, so we will catch up then.  By then we will have finished the 240 mile Trent Severn Waterway section of Canada and will be in the Georgian Bay! 

July 28, 2012

July 28, 2012  Day 78                    Orillia              Total miles to date:  1459.7 

One of the entries in the painted chair
contest - the "cushions" are actually metal
Saturday morning in Orillia meant a walk to the Farmers Market near downtown. We came back with summer squash, two cinnamon rolls, and lemon tarts. Not a big purchase this time! The market had live entertainment and many food booths.
As we were walking back to our boat we spotted Gold Loopers Barbara and David on Memory Maker II at the marina. They are on their way back to Florida. We had not seen them since the Rendezvous so it was good to catch up with them.
We met Brooks and Sarah on Our Time for lunch then walked around the downtown area again. Orillia was holding a two day festival with vendors lining the street, live music in place in various locations, and other street performers.  We stopped at a local meat market and bought peameal bacon which we have heard people rave about. We were also told it is not available in the United States. So, tomorrow’s breakfast will include…
Lunch with Sarah and Brooks in Orillia
Lisa and Ron, Outbound arrived this afternoon and stopped by for a nice visit. We hope to continue boating with them in the Georgian Bay.
Gathering on Joy Ride
We met with five other boating couples at 6pm on Joan and Bruce’s boat, Joy Ride, (from New York) to discuss crossing the Georgian Bay – it is known for being beautiful and for having many rocks to be avoided. So we all brought our charts to the gathering along with appetizers. Two of the couples are Canadians who live in the Georgian Bay and are very familiar with the area and were very helpful.

Working on charts??
The guys fnished their charts
The remainder of the evening was spent working on chart plotting, updating the blog, and reading. The evenings are cool here and it is very pleasant to not have the air conditioner running!

July 27, 2012

July 27, 2012  Day 77           Kirkfield to Orillia       Total miles to date:  1459.7 

Yesterday may have been rainy but today was a beautiful sunny day as we headed out from our overnight stay on the Kirkfield lock wall to the town of Orillia. The thirty mile trip provided us with the diverse experience of being on an extremely narrow canal to a large lake!  You know the water is narrow and shallow when it is called Canal Lake. Then we went under a bridge called “Hole in the Wall”.  We went through five locks today, all locking down.

Lots of nice homes on the water!
Then we arrived at Lake Simcoe – what a change! We actually had water under us!  We enjoyed the lake as it was calm today and we could pick up the speed for a while.  We arrived at the Port of Orillia Marina around 2:00 and will stay here until Monday morning. Orillia is at the end of Lake Simcoe and is a larger city. We cooked dinner on the grill, talked with Sarah and Brooks on Our Time, and will get together with them for lunch Saturday. There is a Farmers Market and a festival Saturday, so we will check those out too!

No room to pass!
Hole in the Wall bridge

Entrance to Lake Simcoe

July 26, 2012  Day 76     Bobcaygeon to Kirkfield     Total miles to date:  1430.2

Since we did not have to wait for a lock opening first thing this morning we decided to leave the marina at Bobcaygeon at 7:20 and entered Sturgeon Lake under a very overcast sky. As big as the lake is, we had it practically to ourselves. We arrived in Fenelon Falls by 9:20 and locked through immediately by ourselves.  We usually stop at the little towns but unfortunately needed to keep going this time.
It was very overcast when we left Bobcaygeon and by the time we arrived at Fenelon Falls it was raining steadily.  Thank goodness we bought good rain parkas! Joyce put hers to the test going through the lock. (Bill stayed dry as he handles the stern line from the sundeck). We continued on through the Rosedale Lock as the rain stopped and then entered Balsam Lake.  Balsam Lake is the highest point of the Trent Severn Waterway at 840 feet above sea level. We entered the Trent Canal – a very narrow channel with large rocks above and just below the surface along the sides. We were so fortunate that no other boat was coming because passing would have been very difficult. This three mile passage on the Trent Canal led to Lake Mitchell – another challenge with its narrow and shallow channel. This then led back into more of the winding Trent Canal.
Just entering the Kirkfield Lift Lock
We eventually arrived at the big Kirkfield Lift Lock by 12:15. We stayed on the upper lock wall and when the rain stopped late in the afternoon, we decided to take the ride down and stay on the lower lock wall. This would allow us to get an early start on Friday morning. Unlike the Peterborough Lift Lock, we went down this time! We entered the chamber at the top, which is more open than the Peterborough Lift, and were lowered 49 feet. It was a fun ride with a great view and we had the ride to ourselves!  An interesting note: the Kirkfield Lift Lock was our 100th lock on this trip!

Looking down!
Looking back at the lift lock after we were off

We had a nice dinner on board, caught up on some reading, and of course Bill relaxed by playing his banjo.

On Friday, we will go another 30 miles to Orillia and stay in the large Port of Orillia Marina for three nights.  (Stay two and the third night is free.) Our Time will also arrive there on Friday.

July 25, 2012

July 25, 2012  Day 75   Buckhorn to Bobcaygeon    Total miles to date:  1400.2

Leaving the Buckhorn lock wall and trying
not to awaken the houseboats!
We left the Buckhorn Lock wall at 7am and had a calm ride on Buckhorn Lake and then Pigeon Lake! Very few boats out this early –and definitely not the house boats!
We arrived at the charming little town of Bobcaygeon, Ontario and found a spot on the lock wall. We spent a few hours wandering through the shops and even had a late breakfast there.  After leaving the lock wall, we continued on another mile to our marina, Centre Point Landing where we will spend the night. Marinas mean time to catch up on the blog, email, and laundry.

Our Time is a day ahead of us now, but Sarah and Joyce are on the phone each day. We will probably catch up with them this weekend.

This is a short update for today but we have finally captured the past few days on the blog.

Thanks for checking in with us. We continue to have a good time and marvel at the Canadian scenery.

July 24, 2012  Day 74         Douro to Buckhorn      Total miles to date:  1381.70

Today’s travel on the Trent Severn Waterway was a blend of lakes and locks, sun and wind, dodging a myriad of houseboats (vacationers rent them for the week), and keeping in the channel to dodge even more rocks above and below the surface of the water.  All in a day’s boating in Canada! 

We left the Douro #24 Lock wall around 8:00 to be at the next lock when it opened.  We were the only boat in that lock and the next which made it quicker to get through. We stopped at the Young’s Point lock wall and spent over an hour wandering around some of the specialty shops and had lunch at a nearby marina. Then it was back to the boat to continue on our way.

St. Mary's on the Rock
We entered Clear Lake, which is fairly wide and was choppy today because of the wind gusts. That led us to Hells Gate, a narrow, winding passage through rocks and small islands – some large enough to have a house on them.  (Right before Hells Gate, we passed a small church, St. Mary’s on the Rock.)  Just an observation.  Then we arrived at Lovesick Lock – it is on an island! 
Going through Hell's Gate

When we cleared that lock, we were six miles from our destination of Buckhorn Lock.  While we locking through, a space on the wall became available and we were able to stay there for the night.  We shared the lock wall with at least seven houseboats, and several other boats of various types.  After we tied up on the wall, we walked to a grocery store and hardware store to get provisions. On the way back, a man that had we met in Peterborough recognized us and gave us a ride back to the boat. A small, friendly world! Finally, we walked to get a pizza and brought it back to the boat for dinner.   We talked with some of the other boaters and local residents and then prepared for our trip to Bobcaygeon on Wednesday. We will stay at a marina there – time to add water!

July 23, 2012  Day 73     Peterborough to Douro      Total miles to date:  1357.5
What an interesting day we had!  We were in the second group to leave our lock wall today which meant we were an hour later than planned. But we arrived at the Peterborough Lift Lock next with three other boats and had a quick (10 minute) ride to the top. We were able to take lots of pictures as we went up since we didn’t have to monitor our lines.  It was a fun ride up and provided us with a beautiful view from the top!  (Lisa on Outbound took our pictures also!)
We are behind Outbound in the chamber
ready to go up!

View from the top!
Carried Away in position going up
Carried Away leaving the lift lock
at the top
From there we went through three difficult locks and because of some wind, placement in the locks, and fatigue from the heat, we decided to stay at the top of Douro Lock#24 for the rest of the day. The lockmaster said the next lock would have even more wind, and there were also storms forecast.  We hope to stop at Young’s Point tomorrow since we did not get that far today. We always have the understanding that if one of us wants to stop then we do.  Flexibility is key and we are in no hurry. By 6:30 the storm arrived with golf ball sized hail, and desperately needed rain for this area.  When the storm cleared we cooked out on the grill and had another quiet evening on the lock wall.

July 22, 2012  Day 72         Peterborough               Total miles to date:  1350.5

Lift Lock - boat ready to enter on left to be
raised up - pan on right at top will be lowered.
We watched this the day before we took our turn!
Wow – we went all of a mile today from the marina to the Lock 20 wall!  Outbound followed us over to tie up also.  We wanted to be able to go through the lock early when it opens Monday morning. But the main reason was to have the chance to walk the half mile to the Peterborough Lift Lock and observe it in action. It is quite the engineering marvel.  We watched a boat enter from the lower side to be raised the 65 feet (which we will do) and then we watched a boat enter from the upper side (after we climbed the 60 steps to the top!) to be lowered. 
The Lift Lock includes a Visitors Center which is very well done, including a video of the history of the Trent Severn and several displays. We saw our friends names (Odyssey) in the guest register – they were here two days before us!

We walked back to the boat and had lunch, read, and had a relaxing afternoon watching boats go by.  We cooked dinner on the grill.  The couple from Ottawa that we met recently invited us on their boat after dinner and we had a nice visit.  We thought we were going to have some rain, but the storm that was only 15 miles away missed us. It is very dry here and they really do need the rain.

We will go through six or seven locks tomorrow including the Peterborough Lift Lock. Our destination is Youngs Point and we will stay on a lock wall.

July 21, 2012

July 21, 2012  Day 71   Hastings to Peterborough    Total miles to date:  1349.4

Following Our Time across Rice Lake
Today was a long travel day as we left at 7:00 am to travel over 39 miles to Peterborough.  We followed Our Time and Outbound. The Trent River immediately turned into Rice Lake as we left Hastings, so we enjoyed a wider body of water today for most of the trip.  We still had to stay in the channel because of rocks and shallow areas. We entered the Otanabee River around 9:30 and once again the water became more narrow.  There are many houses along the water – both cottages and large homes.  We only had to go through one lock today at Scotts Mills and it is right before we arrived at the Peterborough Marina.
Peterborough is a community of around 80,000 which is large compared to some of the smaller villages and towns we have been in recently.  We did walk downtown and later visited with Lisa and Ron on Outbound. They have their standard poodle, Gizmo, with them who has a fun personality.  He barks every time they go under a bridge!

Peterborough has a free concert every Wednesday and Saturday in the park next to the marina. So we enjoyed Suzie McNeil’s performance tonight.

Tomorrow morning (Sunday) we will leave the marina and go to the lock wall to tie up.  This is Lock #20 and we want to walk up to Lock #21 to see it operate before we face it on Monday. It is the Peterborough Lift Lock which was built in the 1920’s. We will drive into the pan and it will lift us 65 feet. There are two pans – one at the top and one at the bottom. They will add a foot of water to the one at the top and it will cause the bottom pan to raise with us in it– like a seesaw. Should be an exciting ride and a great view.  We are explaining it in advance because we won’t be able to post pictures until we are able to get wifi again in a few days.

July 20, 2012  Day 70             Hastings                     Total miles to date:  1310.3

Today was another nice day of travel on the Trent River as we headed to Hastings, Ontario.  We left the lock wall at 9 am and Our Time caught up with us promptly. We went through five locks today. That brings our total to 84!  We are staying on the upper lock wall with Our Time and another boat, Outbound from Florida. Outbound is not on the loop but is traveling in Canada this summer.
We walked through the downtown area for a while before returning to the boat.  The popular local restaurant here is Banjo Grill, so you know we had to go there!  Sarah and Brooks joined us and we all had fish.
Banjo Grill for dinner
We planned an early departure on Saturday for the 39 mile trip to Peterborough so we called it an early evening.

July 19, 2012

July 19, 2012  Day 69           Campbellford            Total miles to date:  1291.0

We left the lock wall at Glen Ross #7 this morning when it opened for us at 8:45. Our Time had caught up with us and locked though with us. We went through five more locks and arrived at Campbellford, Ontario at 1:15. We tied up to the city wall downtown for the afternoon so we could browse through the shops. Campbellford is home to the World’s Finest Chocolate Factory Outlet store and we did not leave empty handed. Bill insists some of it will go into the freezer! Then we visited one of the bakeries that is popular here (and with Loopers) and picked up muffins and bread.  
The Tooney
Campbellford is home to the Tooney!  This is their two dollar coin which was designed by a resident of Campbellford. It is in the center of their park where we are docked downtown.
The City also provides free wifi at the town dock, so Joyce could at least take care of all things needed on the internet (including the update of this blog!

Carried Away and Boreas in Campbellford
We will move to the lock just past Campbellford before dinner and spend the night there. We will go to Hastings, Ontario tomorrow.

July 18, 2012  Day 68   Entering the Trent Severn    Total miles to date:  1273.8

We began our journey on the Trent Severn Waterway today. We left Fraser Park Marina at 10am giving the mail time to arrive (without ours unfortunately). We also waited in line to get the holding tank pumped out.  By leaving two hours after the other boats also going this way, we had the six locks to ourselves and were able to get through them in about 15 minutes each. The Trent Severn has 44 locks!
This part of the Trent Severn is fairly narrow but not nearly as much as the Rideau.  It is abundant with birds and we spotted an eagle’s nest on top of a telephone pole with two eagles holding watch. 

We continued on and tied up on the lower side of Lock 7 at Glen Ross, Ontario. The lock wall is shaded and has picnic tables scattered around it. We were the only boat there as the others all stopped at Lock 6 which has electric hookups. 

Eagles on watch
Kawartha Voyager
coming out of the lock
Shortly after we got here we went over to the little convenience/ variety store across the street and had ice cream. We had heard from several sources how good it was and we were not disappointed. Richard, the store owner, told us within an hour a large tour boat was coming through the lock so we had our cameras ready. The boat holds about 500 people and goes from Peterborough to Kingston. Then the passengers take a bus back home as the boat continues on to Ottawa with a new group. This tour happens only a few times a year.  We were happy we were already on the lock wall and did not have to try to pass this boat in the narrow channel!
We cooked dinner on the grill and spent another quiet evening on Carried Away.

July 17, 2012

July 17, 2012  Day 67            Trenton                      Total miles to date:  1261

Not a lot to report today - this was a day to stay put. The 95 degree heat, high gusty winds, with a threat of storms later in the day did not warrant much activity off the boat.  We even decided not to go to the Royal Air Force Museum. 
Bill did walk to a NAPA store for oil filters this morning, and he got some routine engine maintenance done – changed some zincs, etc. but all in all, a day for reading and trying to stay cool.

After dinner on the boat we did take a long walk, and although it was still hot it did not rain.  So much for staying cool!
We will start this part
of the journey tomorrow
Our mail did not arrive as hoped, and unless it arrives before we leave in the morning, we will have to depart without it and have the marina forward it. Our plan is to leave in the morning and go through at least 6 locks.

July 16, 2012

July 16, 2012  Day 66             Trenton                     Total miles to date:  1261

Several people "walked" Our Time 90 degrees
to the back wall and then "walked" our boat in their place.
We needed to move back from the fuel dock
and it was easier this way!
We are now in Trenton, Ontario at Fraser Park Marina with two other Looper boats – Our Time and Boreas. As soon as we arrived we added fuel and then got organized.  Having wifi is a bonus and Joyce spent some time catching up with the blog, email, etc. We were soon out walking around the downtown area.
The staff here is very friendly and helpful. Sarah and I needed to get haircuts and Sandy arranged for appointments and actually drove us to the hairdresser later in the day.  We cooked dinner on the grill and then headed to a nearby grocery store. We always seem to need food!  We will stay here another day before heading up the Trent Severn. The mail has not arrived and tomorrow’s weather forecast is not encouraging.

July 15, 2012  Day 65                                  Total miles to date:  1239

Sunday morning did not allow us to sleep in but found us departing with Our Time at 7:30 to make the 8:00 bridge opening in Kingston.  We left under a cloudy sky which soon turned to a light rain. We entered Lake Ontario, keeping Kingston to our starboard side and followed the lake to the Bay of Quinte.  What a difference having over 80 feet under us in a 1’-1.5’ sea from the shallow Rideau Canal we left behind.  For a Sunday there were few boats out with us.
We never get tired of sunsets over the water
We went about 50 miles today which was easy since we had no locks to enter. While underway we talked to our friends on Quest. They are a week ahead of us! We anchored at 2:30 with Our Time happy that the rain had stopped. We spent a quiet night at anchor in a little cove. 

Tomorrow we will go to Trenton, Ontario and stay at Fraser Park Marina for two nights. We are having mail delivered there and we definitely need to add fuel and empty the holding tank!  Trenton will mark a new phase of our trip as we enter the Trent Severn Waterway!

July 14, 2012  Day 64                                  Total miles to date  1189

Arriving at Confederation Basin
by dinghy
Today was spent touring Kingston!  As planned we took our dinghy (A Little Carried Away) into the day dock at Confederation Basin (about 2 miles from here) and spent the day seeing Kingston. We began with a one hour narrated tour by trolley car which provided us with an excellent overview of the history of Kingston. Following our tour we saw Brooks and Sarah as they were arriving, and we went to lunch together at Chez Piggy and had a very good meal. We said good bye to them and walked around the various shops. We also stopped to watch the street performers. They were here as part of an annual Buskers Festival with performers from all over the world performing for free.  Many people were there to watch the entertainers!  One of the shops we went in was a general store that had marine supplies on its mezzanine level. The clerk said we were his lucky 13 – we were the 13th Looper couple to visit since the boating season began this summer! We did buy two more Port Guide books for the Trent Severn and the Georgian Bay. We also bought two more fenders for the boat.
There were street performers
of all kinds!
Kingston City Hall across from
the waterfront at Confederation Basin
We took the dinghy back to the boat around 3:30 and did some boat chores and plotted our course for Sunday when we depart Kingston. We were happy to have this day to see Kingston – it is an active city on the water, again with much history.

July 13, 2012  Day 63                                  Total miles to date  1189

Brooks (Our Time) had time to catch this guy
while we waited on the Jones Falls Lock
We completed the 126 mile Rideau Canal system today at Kingston which we entered on July 4 in Ottawa. It was an interesting trip that twisted and turned through many small towns proud of their heritage, and many rural settings. It was often very narrow and very shallow - the perfect place to find loons, gulls, and the occasional heron. At times the canal turned into rivers and lakes and we enjoyed the depth of the water and the view with homes, large and small claiming their place on the waterside. We also went through 49 locks on the Rideau, and we found the lockmasters and attendants very helpful and friendly.  Many of the lock sites have converted their old lockmaster’s house into a museum and all of the locks have a park like setting around them with many trees and picnic tables. Each of the locks has room on their walls before and after the locks for a few boats to dock overnight. Most have 30 amp power connections but none have water hook-ups. Local residents often come just to watch the boats go through the locks! Colonel John By designed this canal system in 1826 and it was completed in 1832. 
We arrived at the small Rideau Marina on the north side of Kingston around 1:00.  Joyce went into downtown Kingston by dinghy with Sarah and Brooks on Our Time.  The tourist centre, city hall, lovely Confederation Park, hotels, shops, restaurants, and street entertainers are on the waterfront.  The city provides free wifi in the park, so while Sarah and Brooks walked around, Joyce was able to update the blog, etc.  Bill stayed on the boat to do some small repairs.  After returning to the boat, we walked to the grocery store and found a small place for a quick dinner.  The grocery store was much farther than expected so we did not buy anything that needed refrigerating.

Kingston enjoys its position on Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and the Cataraqui River (Kingston’s end of the Rideau Canal), and it is the birthplace of commercial navigation on the Great Lakes. Kingston is also a “central” point for anyone doing the Loop. We arrived by taking Lake Champlain north from New York.  Other Loopers followed the Erie Canal to Oswego and arrived here at Kingston as well. Our route is a longer one, but we were happy not to have missed that part of Canada.
Tomorrow (Saturday), we will take our dinghy into the day dock and explore the city. 

July 13, 2012

July 12, 2012  Day 62                                  Total miles to date  1176

We were the first boat to leave Chaffeys Lock wall this morning and headed through more narrow passages to the Davis Lock opening 2 miles away. After that we headed to the Jones Falls Lock. It begins with a single lock and then is immediately followed by a flight of three locks. We had hoped to go right through but at the last minute we were told it would be a two hour wait on the blue line.  This did give us time to get some cleaning one and tour two museums on site. The old lockmasters house was converted into a museum and there is an active blacksmith shop also. 
The delay also gave Brooks and Sarah on Our Time a chance to catch up with us so we traveled the remainder of the day with them.  We cleared the Jones Falls Locks in over an hour and then both decided to anchor out prior to reaching Brewer’s Lock. We were not confident there would still be room on the lock wall there and the choices past that location were not great.  So we chose a beautiful anchorage on Cranberry Lake which is still part of the Rideau waterway system.
Carried Away at anchor in Cranberry Lake
Brooks came over on his dinghy to take us back to their boat for appetizers – such a great taxi service!  We had a good time visiting with them.  We came back to our boat for a quick dinner and just enjoyed watching the sun setting on the lake.  We will head out tomorrow to a marina in Kingston, Ontario with Our Time.

Subnote: It is now Friday, July 13 and we are in Kingston, Ontario. Our little marina has no wifi so Joyce came in by dinghy with Our Time to a city park downtown with wifi.
I will update on Monday from Trenton!

July 11, 2012  Day 61                                  Total miles to date  1161.4

We left the Rideau Ferry Marina at 9:00 and headed back out on the Rideau Lake.  The lake was wide and deep and was a stark contrast to the narrow canal – which we also experienced today.  We went through three locks: Narrows Lock, Newboro Lock, and Chaffeys Lock.  We had been locking up until today but when we arrived at the Newboro Lock we started locking down and will continue until we reach Kingston.
Little cabin in the woods
 We decided to stay on the lock wall at Chaffeys after we locked through there.  It filled up with other boaters spending the night shortly after we arrived and we were glad we stopped when we did. Our stays at the lock walls are covered by the seasonal mooring pass (in addition to the season locking pass) that we purchased before we left on the Loop.  We are traveling at our own pace and sometimes that just means shorter days.

We took a short walk toward a resort area on the lake. We had hoped to tour the Lock Museum but it was not open on Wednesdays.  Sarah and Brooks on Our Time stopped five miles behind us at the Newboro Lock. We will try to find space on the same lock wall tomorrow night.

We grilled shishkebob and had fresh fruit salad for dinner.  Bill plotted the course for tomorrow and we called it an early evening.

July 10, 2012

July 10, 2012  Day 60                                  Total miles to date  1138.4

We left our lock wall at Smith Falls with Odyssey at 8:30 to be ready for the bridge opening. It was about a 20 minute wait. Odyssey tied on the blue line, but we decided to “tread water” since no one else was behind us. Once we passed through the swing bridge opening, we were in the Smith Falls Lock #31.  We locked through and were on our way down the Rideau again. It is amazing how narrow this canal is with rocks lining the sides. Staying in the channel is critical. 
The narrow Rideau!!

We locked through the Poonamalie Lock next. It is in the most peaceful quiet setting and is a favorite lock according to the lockmaster. It was our 51st lock.
Odyssey in the Poonamalie Lock
Seven miles later we arrived at the town of Rideau Ferry, said goodbye to Odyssey (they wanted to go farther today) and docked at the marina there.  We needed water and other services and decided to make a very short trip today.   This turned out to be a wise decision as Joyce became ill just as we were docking.  She had not had vertigo in a long time but had a bad case of it today complete with a stomach virus.  She was better by early evening and we hope to be on our way tomorrow. 

We will be on lock walls the next two days.  We will be in Kingston, Ontario by the weekend and will be in Trenton, Ontario on Monday, July 16. This will begin our journey on the Trent Severn waterway.
Our view from our boat on the Rideau Lake

July 9, 2012

July 9, 2012  Day 59                                    Total miles to date  1129.5

We departed Merrickville at 7:30 with Odyssey and followed the Rideau Canal through more narrow and shallow water.  We went through five more locks today and then reached Smith Falls before lunch. We thought about docking here for a few hours just to tour museums, but after we toured the Rideau Canal Museum and the Railroad Museum, we decided just to stay put for the rest of the day and depart on Tuesday. The lock wall empties into a basin and is surrounded by a park with shade trees, and picnic tables.  It was a much cooler day so we only needed to open the windows on the boat to be comfortable. 
Joyce and Sally walked to a grocery store and as usual bought more than they wanted to carry in their bags.  While they were gone, Bill took advantage of Greg’s experience and advice about boating in the North Channel and Georgian Bay and marked our charts accordingly with Greg’s help!

We had a light dinner on board and a relaxing evening.  We are still planning our route for tomorrow!  It will probably be a few days before we can post again. We will update photos when we can get a stronger connection.

July 7-8, 2012  Day 57-58                             Total miles to date  1115.6

Saturday: We arrived in Merrickville on Saturday and toured the downtown area complete with shops, restaurants, museums, and the requisite ice cream shop. We had dinner at a local restaurant with Sally and Greg. 
Sunday: Merrickville was one busy town today with its 12th annual antique car show. They had over 1,000 cars here proudly displayed by their owners. The crowds gathered around the vintage cars and trucks were large.  Many people browsed in the downtown shops since all were open today.  Sidewalks and streets were very congested!  We were happy to be on the boat and not looking for a parking space.
Merrickville United Church
We began our Sunday by going to church. The Merrickville United Church of Canada is located a block from where we are docked and we felt very welcome there and enjoyed the service.

After church we met Sally and Greg on Odyssey and went to the car show, where we bought grilled sausages at a booth for lunch, walked around the town, checked out more museums, and did some shopping.  There are three locks here and everyone enjoys watching the hand cranking of the gates and the boats maneuvering to come through each level.
Nice truck!
It is a breezy warm day but not as hot as it has been. One of the church members told me to convert from Centigrade to Fahrenheit by multiplying by two and adding 30 degrees. 

Late in the day we saw the people on Sally W, boaters that we first saw in Kingston, NY. They are going the opposite way, doing the Triangle Loop. It was good to chat with them again.

We had a very nice dinner with Sally and Greg on Odyssey to complete our day. We got to meet their cat, Hershey!  At the age of eleven, she is a veteran traveler.  Tomorrow we will leave Merrickville and head to Smith Falls, Ontario.