Allen's great circle trip

and the
Trent Severn 

Elegant Living Indoors and Out.
image_map.jpg (73646 bytes) Planned Trip route

Trent Severn, Georgian Bay
De Tour Village , Michigan

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As we departed Oswego City Marina, in a misting rain, we were confident that the weather would cooperate. On crossing  Lake Ontario two to four foot rollers with an occasional five-foot wave were encountered. The fifty-mile crossing went well and we pulled into Trenton Park Marina, Trenton, Ontario and tied up.
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customs_boat.jpg (18716 bytes) Even though we had not cleared customs, the harbormaster allowed Winston to inspect the turf. Allen left the boat with all the necessary documents to confer with customs by phone. He soon returned to the boat with the orders that neither he nor anyone else was to leave the boat until the custom agents had personally cleared the boat. The problem being that Allen declared we had a non-restricted rifle aboard. When the two custom agents arrived, they were understanding to our problem and declared that the rifle was a hunting rifle with a trigger lock and in a case. After our passports and Winston’s papers were checked and after playing with Winston, they stated that, we looked harmless and granted us entry.
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Allen saving fuel as we cross the 5000 mark.

   After our ordeal in clearing customs and passing our 5000 miles mark, we decided that it was time to eat at the highly recommended Italian restaurant on the waterfront. After a nice meal and discussion covering the day’s events we returned to the boat agreeing that we were both tired and were going to sleep in the next morning. True to our word, Winston and Lee stumbled out of bed at nine thirty only to find Allen setting with his computer working on the web site. After a few barbs of being called Rip Van Winkle, Allen finally admitted that he had only been up for a few minutes.
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tim_hortens.jpg (17328 bytes) Long over due haircuts were the first item of the day after coffee and donuts at Tim Horton’s which is the Canadian Duncan Donut. 
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Awaking the next morning, we took on the challenge of The Trent Severn Waterway. In the first two hours we negotiated five locks and motored on to Old Mill Park, Campbellford, Ontario.
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 Locks 11 & 12 at Campbellford are  flight locks meaning that the lift is so high that it takes two locks in a series to accomplish the rise.
Adjacent to the lock the Rotarians had build a foot path around the lock which we enjoyed.
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choloate.jpg (25832 bytes) Being advised not to negotiate the waterway with the heavy weekend traffic we decided to stay another day and tour the chocolate factory outlet. While we were there, we were able to sample many of the different varieties and purchase some. 
That evening Allen joined the millions who went to see Spiderman while Lee and Winston stayed on the boat and chilled out.
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taelor.jpg (25005 bytes) At the marina, Winston met Taelor who was spending a week’s holiday navigation the waterway with her family. They had a great time playing and Winston was sad to see them leave.
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turbuance_water.jpg (21233 bytes) Hastings Village Marina above Lock 18 offered us a look at the force of water rolling over the dams. Lock 20 was us our first gate lock. A gate lock has gates in the doors of the lock to allow water to enter the well causing turbulence near the forward gate rather than near the rear gate as in previous hydraulic locks..
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We arrived at Peterborough, the day after the weekend celebration of the hundredth year celebration of the Peterborough Lift Lock. This was a planned arrival as  the marina was completely booked for the weekend and all available docking space was packed, even with boats being rafted off. Docking at the Peterborough Marina proved to be eventful when Sheena the harbormaster tripped over the dock lines and flipped her radio into the drink. After we were tied up, she changed into makeshift swimming attire and tried searching the bottom for the radio while tethered to one of our lines. After trying many different strategies, she finally crawled out shivering and decided that the radio was gone. 
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The next day was spent changing oil and filters and doing routine maintenance, it didn't seem like we have been underway a hundred hours sense Baltimore. However, to coin an old phrase," Time sure does fly when you’re having fun."  Early the next morning we moved to the Peterborough Lift Lock.
The Peterborough Lift Lock is a national historic site of Canada and is the world’s highest hydraulic lift lock rising sixty-five feet. Imagine two large pans of water supported on large cylinders. 
As a boat enters, the pan and the gates are closed  more water is allowed into the upper pan, which causes the lower level to rise and the upper level to lower. It gives one the feeling of riding in an elevator only the cage is a pan of water.
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Canadian Sunset and views along the Trent 

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Our next port was Lovesick Lock where we tied to the wall for the night. This was truly an isolated island where the lockmaster must boat in each day. We were cautioned by the lockmaster to watch Winston as there were three bears on the island and that one had crawled on a boat the previous morning. 
Listening to the radio the next morning we learned that Peterborough was under a state of emergency because of a downpour, which flooded the city. We also learned that the dock master’s office had water flowing in the door. This is one time we were glad we left one day earlier.
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  Fenelon Falls Lock  offered us a surprise when the lockmaster informed us that the mooring fee was seventy cents per foot to moor at all locks on the Trent. This came as a surprise as we were three fourths thru the system and had never been charged. Needless to say, we were a little miffed as all the amenities were just a wall to tie up.
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The Port of Orillia proved to be a  surprise when we discovered that we had finally docked at a port on the right day. They were having their annual poker run which drew boats from Canada and the US. It was awesome to see the boats parade out to the staring line. An interesting fact was that all the boats were using mufflers until they were on the starting line, then bypasses were switched and off they roared.
As an added treat, a Scottish Festival was being held in the adjacent park. The festival started off with a parade of twenty bags and pipe group marching thru town and ending in the park where Scottish dancing and various other contests were held.

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  We left Orillia early in order to dock on Georgian Bay. We were arriving at all the locks as they were opening and were making good time, when Lee casually mentioned that we were becoming bored and that we needed some excitement. As we were about to exit Lock 43 Lee got his wish when the runabout behind us in the lock couldn’t start its engine and Allen offered to toe them to the lock wall. When Allen went to the helm to start our engines, our starboard engine wouldn’t start. We limped out on one engine, runabout in toe, to the wall where we assessed our problem. Because this was an isolated lock, the decision was made to motor on with one engine to Port Severn, ON. The only obstacle ahead of us which was the world famous Big Chute.
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speed_limit.jpg (14702 bytes) Speed limit in the Trent Severn is 6 miles per hour.
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Our original plans were to dock off to the side and observe how the lock worked and just be tourists. However, with the long line of boats waiting to use the lock we decided to forgo our previous plan and wait our turn. It was interesting to watch boats being loaded and unloaded onto the open carriage as we waited our turn. 
The lockmaster had been advised that we were using only one engine and gently placed us aboard. Not knowing what to expect we were snapping pictures just like real tourists, while the seasoned boaters just sat and waited for the ride down. Allen trying to get an award-winning photograph was seen hanging over the swim platform trying to snap a picture of the props. Even with all the excitement of the day this is one lock we will always remember.
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lee_swinning.jpg (22908 bytes)  Severn Boat Haven in Port Severn,ON was awaiting our arrival with a mechanic ready to check out our starter. Early the next morning the starter was taken to be repaired in a nearby town. As we patiently waited around the marina, Lee finally decided to go swimming, something he hadn’t done on the whole trip.
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At lock forty-five, we were able to close the gates on the Trent Severn’s last lock and our last lock. The lockmaster advised us that the North Channel had some shallows and might give us a problem. We scrambled around and altered our course, which meant a hundred and twenty miles across Georgian Bay. 
The bay was calm and the crossing was uneventful.
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We docked at the Tobermory Government dock in Tobermory, ON and immediately went off to find something to eat after Winston gave his approval of the turf. Arising the next morning, we were faced with the decision on whether to leave and take a chance that the weather would hold or hold out for a more promising weather report. Needless to say, we decided to stay and tour the many shops and polish on the boat. The next morning we watched a few boats head out only to see them return after reaching the mouth of the bay and faced with three-meter seas. Finally on the third morning we had our window and departed.
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de_tour.jpg (14008 bytes) The crossing of Lake Huron was quite pleasant with calm seas and crystal clear water. As we docked at De Tour, MI we were unable to reach the customs office and be cleared for entry. Early the next morning we were finally cleared and left for Mackinaw Island, only after a hearty breakfast in town. 
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