July 19, Wednesday, from Gatineau a few miles from Ottawa to the Rideau Canal in Ottawa.
The electrical issue was top priority today so I made some calls and we traveled to a nearby marina (Kitchissippi) that called their marina electrician to come in and check on our electrical problem. Bob was a great guy and he determined that the problem is in a breaker, but the local marine store didn’t have the parts we needed. The marina manager gave us another name to call for boat mechanic, and since he is closer to Ottawa we decided to finally get to Ottawa and then work on the electrical challenge. Again, people went out of they way for us and we are so grateful.
As we headed toward the Rideau Canal basin where we would be going up eight stair step locks in a row (!) we saw some impressive sites including the falls and the back-side of the Parliament building.
We tied up along a wall at the beginning of the locks along with another 5 boats to wait the estimated hour and a half before we could start the lift up to the Rideau Canal from the Ottawa River. During that time we walked up to the top of the locks and along the canal, checking for a tie up spot once we made to the top. It looked like there might be space and then we saw a familiar boat – Happy Happy – belonging to Terry and Pat who we’d met in New Jersey, saw again on the Hudson River, and again in Whitehall NY before the Champlain Canal. I sent Terry a text message and hoped to see them later. (Which we did!)
Back to the boat, the trip up 8 stairway locks began. The routine here is to move into a lock, use a gaffe pole (boat hook) to grab specific mooring cables attached at the top and bottom of the lock, then put forward and stern lines (ropes) around the cables tight enough to keep the boat in position but loose enough so it slips up as the locks fills with water. Once you are done with one lock, boats move to the next one, one at a time in a specific order, and do it all again. Eight times! It took awhile, about 2 1/2 hours, but we enjoyed talking to spectators watching along the sides of the canal.
Here the building at the top of the locks, and the locks as they looked at night as we made our way to Parliament to see a spectacular light show given every night a 10pm.