burgeetree.jpg (15266 bytes) The Adventures of Lynn and Les on "Cottonwood"

   The 1000 Islands and Trent-Severn
wheel.gif (3486 bytes)7/1/2004 to 8/10/2004

We stayed anchored in Clayton for another day. There was a beautiful little island across from the anchorage not far offshore. It had a lovely landscaping and a huge “C” spelled out in flowers. That evening, July 3rd, the town hosted a fireworks display in the harbor. Naturally we had a front row seat.

Clayton is kind of the gateway to the 1,000 Islands for northbound cruisers. The Thousand Islands, from which the salad dressing gets it’s name, is just a short distance up the St. Lawrence River, so we decided to have a look since we were so close. We’re not sure if it was because it was a holiday weekend, or because the people here go nuts as soon as the snow thaws, or what, but it was a zoo out there in the waterways.  Zooming seadoos, speed boats, and sailboats, were everywhere and going bananas. Our large slow trawler looked very out of place chugging along. There literally are a thousand islands, that show above the water, dotting the river. Some several acres, others little dots of land with trees on them poking up out of the water. Regardless of size, every one large enough had one or two houses on them.
Some, were literally castles!

July 4th we entered Canada illegally, as we later found out. We called Customs, as we read we were supposed to do, as we approached our destination for the day. The officials said to call when we arrived. A little later we anchored off a town called Ganonoque, ( the que is pronounced qway) Ontario, Canada. After we anchored we called Customs again and said we had arrived. They said call when you go shore. We didn’t go ashore until our next stop, opps, Big hassle, but with the help of the Picton marine owner, and councilwoman, we got it all straitened out.

We spent July 7th and 8th in Trenton at Frasier Park Marina. The town was right by the marina so we took the opportunity to stock up with groceries, buy donuts for Les at Tim Horton’s (a company like Dunkin’Donuts with stores on virtually every corner in Canada), and go see Spiderman 2.

July 10th and 11th found us at Campbellford at a town dock. Not much there, but we went in search of a cheese factory that was supposed to be a long walk out of town. We walked forever and never saw any sign of it. It was very humid and hot so we got a good workout and admired the country side with wild flowers and lots of buzzing insects which fortunately we did not see and did not bite.

The next day we stopped in Hastings which had a really great little hardware store close to the free dock.  I have become quite fond and interested in hardware stores, much to Les’ wonder and delight. First basketball, then hardware stores, what next?  When we were watching TV that night, with the generator running, all of a sudden it quit. Then the inverter quit also. We are in deep trouble, we thought. Seems the batteries weren’t holding a charge and Les discovered only one of the 5 batteries was devoid of dead cells. This was after freaking out that the generator and the inverter were shot.  The next morning we were relieved they started up at all and we limped into Peterborough Marina after going thru several locks and hoping it would start up again since we have to turn off the engines in the locks. When we got there we had to plug the freezer into the dock outlet since plugging the boat into shore power did nothing since the inverter wasn’t working.  I wasn’t about to have all of our frozen food ruined. The next day a very nice, but way too chatty, man came and confirmed Les’ diagnosis of batterius interuptus.

The next day we had new batteries installed and went out to discover Peterborough. Then the rains came the next day. Peterborough had the worst flood in 100 years. Luckily our boat just floated up with the rising water, even though the docks were rising Up from the walls.

We stayed in Peterborough for another 2 weeks until our daughter, Cheryl, arrived to cruise with us to the end of the Trent-Severn.  Cheryl instantly became part of our crew, learning quickly how to tie up inside the locks.  She couldn’t figure out how we could have done it with just the two of us. Peterborough is a nice sized town with all the amenities a boater needs. They even had a “Boater’s World” and the owners, a couple about our age, we discovered had been in Roatan the same time we were and may have been at the same restaurant at Hole in the Wall the same day we were.

August 1st we went thru the famous Peterborough Lift Lock that had just celebrated it’s 100th year in operation. It works differently than the other locks we had gone thru in that it has two huge pans filled with water which are counterbalanced on hydraulic lifts. As one pan filled with water and boats are raised, the other is lowered, 65 feet in 2 minutes!

From Aug 2 to Aug 5th we went thru 16 locks and stopped at Young’s Point, Buckhorn, Bobcaygeon, Fenelon Falls, crossed Cameron Lake, then Rosedale, Kirkfield had another lift lock, and then Portage.   

Just before reaching the end of the Trent Severn at Port Severn, we went through another very fun lock. this was the Big Chute Marine Railway. You actually drive your boat into a large railway lift, belts are put under your boat and the rail car goes over a hill with your boat in it. Really fun!

August 6th we went thru 2 more locks before crossing 2 large lakes, Simcoe and Couchiching, to reach the Port of Orillia. Our cruising mate for the first part of our journey, Sandy, lives close by in Bracebridge, and we were able to catch a ride and visit Niagra Falls from the Canadian side. Great side trip.  Cheryl had to leave us on August 8th, from Toronto airport. It is so great when family or friends can join you on part of the cruise! Her appreciation and enthusiasm for all we had been doing kind of rekindled our sense of the adventure of it all.

Big Chute Lift Lock

Big Chute Coming Down

Last lock, Orillia, before Georgian Bay

Sea planes are common up here

Next, the Big Shute lock and entry into Georgian Bay...

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~ Clic on Pics to Enlarge ~

St. Lawrence River

An Island Home

An Island Castle

Any Island will do

Up the Trent-Severn Waterway

Entrance Peterborough Marina

Canadian Geese everywhere

Cheryl and Lynn line tending in the rain

The Peterborough Lift Lock

We regain our Mustache

How did they name this lock? Lovesick?

Niagra Falls side trip

Cheryl shops with Dad in Niagra

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