Saturday, September 19, 2009

Locking through the Seaway

Pleasure craft are not the priority in the St. Lawrence Seaway, commercial traffic is; thus, we had to wait about an hour before we could transit the Iroquois Lock between Prescott and Morrisburg.

Click on any image for a larger view.

The procedure is simple. First, you tie up at the designated pleasure-craft dock.

Detailed information is displayed above the dock.

Instructions are straightforward.

You report in to the lockmaster via the call phone and pay $25 via credit card. The fee is the same, regardless of size of yacht.

While you wait, you watch mink scamper next to the dock.

When the Tim S. Dool departs the lock, you get a call on VHF 68 from the lockmaster informing you to enter the lock as soon as you see the control light go green. Linger and you might have to wait another hour or more.

You enter the lock. The lockmaster and his assistant will drop lines fore and aft on your boat, so you need at least two crew aboard. He'll collect your payment voucher and note the vessel name.

Then you depart the dock as promptly as you entered.

The next customer is already approaching the lock.

As is another customer.

At Crysler Park Marina, six miles down river, you stop for the night and smoke salmon.

Then savour it, with fresh yellow beans from the Brockville farmer's market and penne with pesto, and a mouthful or three of an Aussie cabernet merlot.

So ends another day on the St. Lawrence River.

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