August 3, 2012

July 30, 2012  Day 80         Orillia to Big Chute      Total miles to date:  1493.5

Following Our Time through
McDonald's Cut
As planned we left the marina in Orillia at 7:20 am and headed out toward the Big Chute, a 34 mile trip that would take us through lakes bordered by homes and evergreen trees. We also passed through the McDonald’s Cut, a narrow passageway that was excavated by hand in 1905. We had to make a Securite’ call to announce that we were there.  Our path also required waiting on a railroad bridge to open (the guide book said the bridge remains open unless a train is coming - not the case). We waited an hour before the bridge opened and it was 45 minutes before the slow freight train actually appeared! We mentioned this to a lock master later and she said many people have waited three hours at that bridge!
We went through two locks today, Couchiching Lock 42, which was a 20 foot drop and then Swift Rapids Lock 43 which is the tallest on the Trent Water Way and lowered us 47 feet. We finally arrived at the Big Chute Marine Railway at 2:30 and tied up on the dock next to Our Time.  Bruce and Joan on Joy Ride arrived soon and decided to ride the railway and stay on the dock below the lock where there was more room.  Watching them go through was the perfect chance for us to see a larger boat being transported this way. We will have our turn tomorrow!
A typical scene today
We had Bruce & Joan and Brooks & Sarah over for drinks on our sundeck and had a good visit.  Bruce and Joan live in New York but have a summer home on the Georgian Bay.

Later we cooked steaks on the grill and then took a walk around the area before dark.