Monday, July 27, 2015

July 7 - 21, 2015 ::: The Trent-Severn Waterway, Trenton to Port Severn


After we obtained our rental car from Enterprise we were off to Toronto to pick up Mike and Sue Morris.  They were joining us in our travels from Trenton up the Trent-Severn Waterway.  Mike and Sue started the first day as "deck-hands" and then graduated to operating SONATA on the waterway.


On the way to Campbellford we encountered swans and ... snakes.  The swans swam past SONATA, the snake, with his fish caught and in his mouth, traveled through the lock and enjoyed a ride to the next level. 

In Campbellford Sue went shopping for a card to send to her mom in the states ... and what did she find; the above card.  This postcard came from a picture taken when SONATA, NOVA  and LAST CHANCE  making the loop in 2011-12 stopped in Campbellford for Canada Day. What a surprise to see us on a postcard!!!

After Campbellford SONATA anchored in Rice Lake ... and again was covered with white bugs during the night.  When we arrived in Peterborough SONATA had a "remove the bugs bath", then we were all off for lunch at the local Taste of Indian restaurant. 

SONATA in Peterborough, then over to Lock 14, the lift lock, and then on down the waterway on the way to Bobcaygeon. The lift-lock consists of two pans mounted on a ram.  The one that ends up on the top is loaded with an additional foot of water to make it heavier than the one at the bottom.  The proper valves are opened and the top one presses down and pushes the bottom one up.

Through the lakes, past St. Peter's Church on the Rock ... Bonnie is resting while Sue, Mike, and Charlie pilot SONATA to Bobcaygeon.   Arrival at Bobcaygeon, obtain transportation for Mike and Sue back to Toronto so that may return home. We went through 32 locks during their visit and they were great line handlers and shipmates!  We return to SONATA in Bobcaygeon after reprovisioning at the local Wal-Mart.

The evening on the lock wall gave us a concert, which recognized SONATA as being from Virginia.
 as the performers presented the musical piece Shenandoah.

Through Fenelon Falls Lock and through the narrow Trent-Severn Canal.  Made a security call on the way into the canal, nonetheless, met a vessel to pass.  Avoided the rocky bank ... cedar branches clipped the starboard side of SONATA.  Next lock, Kirkfield.

We enter  the Kirkfield lock, we have been elevated about 600 ft and now it is time to go down. It is similar to the Peterborough  lock but this one we enter at the top, 65 ft up...It is a bit scary as we inch to the front and hope "stop" works on the engines!  All goes well and we exit the lock..We continue to Lock 40 for an overnight in the wilderness.  No phone service, no wifi, nothing but a beautiful evening along on the lock wall.


Met this vessel approaching us, through the "tunnel" without any warning.  We missed each other.  From Lock 40 down the canal and a coordinating bridge opens up to let us  into Lake Simcoe and on to Orillia. 

We arrived in Orillia and enjoyed the Scottish Festival Parade..We hosted a LOOPER get-together on SONATA.  These get-togethers are call "dock-tails."  Five looper boats were present; those in the photo are listed left to right by number:  1/5 Pat(PM) & Bob Amidon aboard VELOMER; Karen, Mark, Tim Nichelson of TIKA; 6=Charlie with the photographer Bonnie of SONATA; 7/8 Denise & Mark Gillispie of ISLAND OFFICE; and, 9/10 Bruce & Ginny Hilton of SNUG TUG.  We all had a wonderful time telling boating experiences and joys.
When we departed Orillia we had an hour's travel to meet a "low" railroad bridge.  It was to open at 0900 ... but there was a train coming.  It came and must  have 1,000 cars long.  Part of the boating experience.  Travel slow . . . and wait.
Everyone knows how Charlie loves his SONATA horn ... well Bonnie was at the wheel when this sign appeared on the canal and guess who had the enjoyment of blowing the horn . . . not Charlie; and Bonnie got the bridge to open quickly.


On down the canal to "The Big Chute",  a travel-lift-lock.  Once the boats from the other side are brought over and discharged, we are loaded.  We have the travel-lift operators use our camera and take pictures of SONATA as we are picked up, travel over the hill, down the other side and are released into the water to move to the end of the Trent-Severn waterway.  Quite an exciting experience to ride a gimbaled travel lift over out of the water, over the hill and back into the water.

We arrive at Port Severn, which is the last lock on the Trent Severn Waterway and stay the night at the Lock wall...We have traveled through 122 locks starting with the Troy Lock in Albany, NY, Lake Champlain, the Chambly Canal, the Rideau Canal and the Trent Severn...We enter Lock 45 and exit a tight channel....Hello  GEORGIAN BAY and NORTH CHANNEL!!!  This is what we have been waiting for..indigo blue waters so clear you can see the bottom....we are excited about the next month of exploring, anchoring, kayaking, swimming and enjoying this magnificent part of  God's wonderful creation....No more locks until Chicago...YAY!!!