We spent 2 nights at Winter Harbour, we needed to have a gasket changed on the port engine, and it had to be flown in. Monday evening we invited the crews from Jill Kristy, Ocean Commotion and Stillwaters II, over and Andy talked about his favourite parts of Georgian Bay and the North Channel.
On Tuesday morning we did a little scrubbing of the deck, especially where the dirty lock ropes had made contact. Once the repairs were done we set off at 2pm to finish the last lock on the Erie Canal. We were through Lock 23 by 2:20, and then continued down the canal for 7 miles to the canal junction. Here you make a choice whether you want to take the Oswego canal to Lake Ontario or the Western Erie ending up in Buffalo.
We chose the Oswego canal, which is 24 miles long with 7 more locks to lowered us 118 feet to the level of Lake Ontario. We passed though Lock 1 at 15:36, there was also a lift bridge at this location that worked in conjunction with the lock.
Reached lock 2 at 15:56, here we had a 5 foot fixed bridge to get under
but since we were descending it was an easy feat.
Arrived at Lock 3 at 17:03. We then went another 6 miles to the free dock at Minetto,
just before Lock 5. This dock has 3 spaces but they were all occupied. We had considered just anchoring, when Loopers, Dick and Phyllis from Avocet offered to let us raft to them. What this means is we just tie our boat to theirs as if they are a dock.
Following supper we were invited to their boat for Strawberry shortcake. We had a tour of their Great Harbour 37- amazing kitchen with a full 36 inch side by side fridge and granite counter tops. The engine room was also well designed and accessible. We met other loopers Janice and Dave from Willy Nilly who were also on the dock. Andy had brought his charts and once again shared his knowledge of Georgian Bay and the North Channel.
We untied from Avocet and approached the lock before 8:00, there was a little fog on the canal.
The lockmaster was running late, and didn’t answer our calls until about 8:10. We were Lock 5 by 8:25, the ropes at this lock were the worst yet green and slimy! We went another 3 miles to Lock 6, and was through it before 9:00. Lock 7 was only another ½ mile down the canal and we were through it by 9:20. We had opted to tie up at the free dock on the north side of the lock and were secured by 9:25.
We went in search of lunch at the Oswego Tea company, which was just up the embankment from the canal.
We then walked to Fort Ontario which is on the waterfront, and leaned about the French, British and American’s fighting over control of this fort.
Here’s a view of Lake Ontario from the top of the Fort.
For supper tonight we will are BBQ with the other 3 boats that are tied up between the locks, Avocet, Willy Nilly and Sasha.
So now we only have Lock 8 and about 1 mile of canal separating us from Lake Ontario and the 55 mile crossing to CANADA!