July 12, 2013

Day 259 - July 11, 2013: The Rideau Canal to Burritts Rapids

We would like to have stayed in Ottawa longer, but also wanted to see more of the Rideau Canal, so we embarked on a day which included 8 locks (1 of which was a pass through) and some interesting countryside. The canal through Ottawa and its suburbs winds under low bridges and is bordered by walking and biking trails which a surprising number of people were taking advantage of this morning.

Rideau Canal leaving Ottawa
A group of three other boaters, whom we did not know, joined us in the first lock and stayed with us throughout. These locks are narrow and short, and it took a shoehorn to get us all in each time. One of the captains was having trouble despite having headsets for communication with his Admiral. She was having difficulty getting the line on the bow attached to the side wall fixed ropes, and by the last lock she was quite tired and ready to quit. These are times we so much appreciate our boat with the easy access pilot house doors and cockpit. Anne can get around very quickly as needed.

4 boats shoehorned into the lock
In one of the locks we spotted a frog between the wall and our boat’s fender, swimming with great energy to make headway against the water rushing into the lock. He tried so hard, but never got far. Anne wanted to scoop him up and help him along, but we did not have a net to do so.

Frog between the fender and the lock wall swimming upstream
There continue to be float planes along the river, some just tied up to a dock or pulled a short way up a ramp, and one taxied out and waited to take off until we passed by. We made it to Burritts Rapids and tied up on the wall to enjoy the sun and one of the coolest days in weeks, as the wind had turned out of the north. The dock was next to a park and we had shade in the evening. One couple came by in a rare Amphicar, built by the Germans during the 60's, and which I remember reading about as a youth in Popular Science magazine. You can drive it on the road or down a ramp into the water! Only about 4,000 of these were ever built. 

Float plane ready to take off 

Enjoying the sun deck

Rare Amphicar 

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