Rideau Canal

We arrived at the boat about 9:30 and started unloading our mini-van. My wife had packed the van just about level full of all our gear. The boat was essentially clean, so we had to take all the boat gear, tools, galley gear, food, bedding, and of course a duffle of clothes.

The Rockcliffe Yacht Club is a co-op club. Everything is done by members, including all the heavy work of building, launching docks, security, etc. We met a number of great fellows, all very willing to help and offer advice. We got all the gear in, and settled down into a reasonable space. There is even still room for us !

Finally, about 1:15 we headed out into the Ottawa River.

About 3 miles up the Ottawa River we came to the Rideau Falls. This is on the Rideau River, not the canal!
Here is our first view of the canal, looking straight up the first flight of 8 locks. I had never been through a lock before, so my first test will be this flight of 8 continious locks.
Just to the Right of the locks is Canada's Parliment building. Ottawa is a beautiful city, with very nice buildings, and walking trails everywhere.
Here we are- Solitude II looking very small in the first lock chamber
Looking ahead to the first lock gate
We made it through one!
The gates open again and we head into the next chamber.
About 3 or 4 chambers into the flight we were greeted by this falls, as the water from the higher lock overflowed the gate. We were told this happened because there were maintenance workers in a lock above and they had held the water level low while they worked. Then to get us enough water they overflowed the previous lock.
My wife, Bonnie, holds us off the wall. We loop a line around some vertical steel cables in the lock and our line loop slides up, keeping us snug to the wall.
Just about to the top- we can see the water level in the main canal ahead. While we waited here, we paid our fees for the canal transit and over night docking. I got a season pass for each, even though I should only be here a couple of weeks, but it was the lowest cost option. It was about $450 (CDN) for our 27 ft boat.
Looking back toward the Ottawa River and the 8 locks we just completed. It took just over an hour to complete the flight.
The last gate opens and we head out into the Canal.
This section of the canal passes through the heart of Ottawa- with bike paths and parkland on each side, for several miles.

Since we are in the first week of the canals season they only operate on a short schedule, until 4:00PM. We could not make the next set of locks, so we went into Dows lake, tied up at a dock and went for a walk along Preston Street, known as 'little Italy' We returned to the boat, and moved out into Dows lake where we set an anchor and had dinner.