Thursday, August 31, 2017

Stepping the mast

The guys here at Wyes Heritage Marina, here in Midland, Ontario, helped me raise my mast yesterday so I am a real sailboat again. Today the cold wind is blowing from the direction we need to go, out of the north so I will provision and finish the rigging on the boat.

Here is a catch up of all the photos I have been taking over the past few days on the Severn Waterway.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Big Chute Marine Railway

Yesterday I completely finished the Trent Severn Waterway going through the famous Big Chute Marine Railway and ending up at Midland where today I will have my mast stepped. Here is a video of my transit through the Big Chute.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Swift Rapids

Swift Rapids is the name of Lock 43 here on the Trent Severn Waterway in Canada. I have just 2 more locks to go to finish later today before I get to Midland. One of them is called Big Chute where they lift the whole Boat out of the water on a marine railway. Should be interesting.

Monday, August 28, 2017

It's getting colder

I had to have the heater on in the car this morning and the docks are starting to empty out, both of which are reminders that winter is coming so I need to get moving. I am leaving Orillia today and hopefully getting as far as the next lock on the Trent Severn Waterway.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

More in Orillia

I really liked this old truck with the young couple in it driving down Main Street here in Orillia. I think it was part of the old car show going on in town, and I reckon it qualifies. I'm not sure what she means to have two fingers pointed horizontally but it looks like a sign of approval. It sort of reminds me of when I was young and had an old vehicle. It's about the only kind you can repair yourself these days because new ones are so complicated.

Anyway I did a catch-up of photos that I took on the last leg of the Trent Severn Waterway and put them together into a video.

I'm actually visiting relatives at the moment so will be away for a few days. Will be back on the boat and blog heading on the TSW this weekend.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Orillia again

When I first saw one, I thought I must be seeing things but this one let me get REALLY close. It's a black squirrel and there's a few of them in the park next to my boat here in Orillia. Cute!

So I took a few photos of this place to give you an idea of what life is like on a lazy Sunday afternoon in Orillia, Canada.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Orillia, Ontario Canada

I am the ONLY Sailing Boat in this big huge marina! Can you believe that? Anyway it is quite a nice marina and I have been traveling non-stop for a few weeks now so I am going to give myself a bit of a break here for a week or so to go and visit nearby relatives.

The voyage here was across Lake Simcoe and all my charts and other boaters warned me about how bad the weather can effect the conditions because of the shallow lake and a funneling effect. Anyway it wasn't too bad and I got here early afternoon in time guessed it....yet another antique car show.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Thorah, Lock 40, Trent Severn Waterway

I'm here at the edge of Lake Simcoe waiting for the winds to die down so that hopefully I will have a relatively smooth crossing. It has a reputation for terrible waves because of it's shallow depths so I want to make sure that my crossing is uneventful.

I wanted to include something about the Canadian Loon because I have seen quite a few up here in the lakes and they are one of the most unusual birds I have ever come across.
Firstly they are quite a big bird and they always seem to be active. This bird has the strangest sound that I have ever heard. It sounds like the howl of a wolf and it is quite haunting. I can't figure out how to include a sample of audio on this blog sorry.
The loon is depicted on the one dollar coin so that is why it is referred to as a"loonie."

Friday, August 18, 2017

Bobcaygeon, Ontario

Delightful little town and as you can see, it was raining and was all afternoon. That was one of the reasons I stopped. Here is another.
My raw water strainer was clogged with weed and my exhaust was belching steam just east of here in Pigeon Lake. I stopped as soon as I saw it and drifted while I took it apart and cleaned it. They say that bad luck comes in three's and the other misfortune I had was that the nuts and bolts holding my drive shaft onto my transmission came apart. Now if you recall, the same thing happened back 6 months ago when I was in Dominica. This time I managed to find some lock nuts at the local hardware store so hopefully it shouldn't happen again.
I actually need to replace my engine mounts again because they are all rusted and I am sure that doesn't help my prop shaft alignment.

 I have been taking lots of photos of the Beautiful "Kawartha's" and I put it into a video for you.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Burleigh Falls, Ontario

Pretty nice rapids this morning with the mist rising and the sunrise.
I have now done 27 locks on the Trent Severn Waterway and I have 18 to go. Yesterday I went through the Peterborough Lift Lock which at 65 feet is the largest in the world. It consists of 2 tubs, one up and one down and when one goes up the other comes down. It is easier to understand if you see the video.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Campbellford, Ontario Canada

Another delightful town and this one's claim to fame?
I had been told by several people that this bakery is the best and that there is a line out the door at 7am when they open! Well there wasn't a line at 7am but there was a steady stream of customers and considering nothing gets going around here until 9am, that's pretty good. And their cranberry cinnamon rolls we're to die for.

So I am very impressed with the Trent Severn Waterway. The locks are a lot cleaner than the Erie Canal and there are at least 3 staff on duty at them compared to just 1 on the Erie. I did a video of my transit through Lock 8.
Hopefully it will make up for the terrible one I did on the Erie Canal.

I am off again today along the TSW with 12 locks already under my belt.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Trenton, Ontario, Canada

I got as far as the start of the Trent Severn Waterway yesterday and had a fantastic day on the water with clear blue skies and puffy clouds. Take a look at  what I saw.

And while wondering around town, i came across an old car display.
Today I am starting to transit the first of 44 locks on the TSW (Trent Severn Waterway.) Should take me a week to get to The other side at Midland on the Georgian Bay.

Sunday, August 13, 2017


Today I am going to move further up the channel towards Trenton and hope to get as far as Sandy Cove. I had a delightfully easy day yesterday in Prinyer's Cove, mainly reading and doing boat chores waiting for the wind to lessen.

Ok so this is why I like Canada.
Tim Hortons, a coffee chain that sells awesome coffee was founded 53 years ago by hockey legend Tim Horton.
The exchange rate is 1.27 US$ so that means that stuff here is cheaper. Plus they use dollar coins which I like and their money is colored with Queen Elizabeth on their $20 bill. Cute!
No Frills supermarket is seriously bare bones. The only credit card you can use is MasterCard otherwise it is cash only. They have cardboard boxes at the exit that you can put your groceries in with NO plastic bags!
Neat public art for it's enjoyment.

Finally, Canadians are nice. They are more likely to apologize to you if you bump into them even if it wasn't their fault. I had a motorist wave me across a pedestrian crossing even though he had a green light.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Prinyer's Cove, Ontario, Canada

Video of my voyage from Oswego to Gananoque through the 1000 Islands.
Yesterday, the weather forecast was not good for this weekend so I ended up Motoring a good 6 hours to a well protected bay at the start of the bay that connects to the Trent River. Today we have WSW at 16 knots.
The Canadian mounted police stopped me on the way and searched my boat.
They have a shipyard program where they have an American USCG official on board. I can't say enough nice things about these guys. All four of them were superb. It was like a night and day experience compared to the terrible Islamorada experience I had with officials down in Florida a couple of years ago.
I happened to pass by the Cork Sailing Regatta off Kingston which included the Laser and Optimist Sailing Championship.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Gananoque, Ontario

A voyage to Canada yesterday took me nearly 4 hours through some breathtaking scenery in the 1000 islands area.
Lake Ontario is very high at the moment and a lot of waterfront properties are under water like this one.
I was able to check in just over the phone with Canadian customs and border patrol when I arrived at the municipal marina.
There was a market going on down town with lots of maple syrup and blueberries being sold.
And a Joni Mitchell lookalike singing in the bandstand on a gorgeous Thursday evening.

Today I am off to a place called Braky Bay not too far west of here. My plan is to hang out in the area for a few days before beginning the Trent-Severn Canal.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Cape Vincent, New York

Another delightful little town. It has everything you need, coffee shop, market, library,  Restaurant and even this.
It has a lovely park in the center of town.
But no wi-fi or cell coverage so I had to walk a mile out of town to get it. Sunrise this morning was pretty good and so was last night's sunset.
From what the locals tell me, this place has the "lake effect" in that they get a lot of snow. Oswego, where I just left from, got 17 feet of snow dumped on them last year. The population dwindles during the winter when 2 out of 3 residents head to Florida.
My voyage yesterday was very rough with a swell directly on my beam but it settled down as I got near the St Lawrence River. Today I am heading to Gananoque in Canada through some of the 1000 islands so it should be very picturesque.