Wednesday, September 24, 2014

2014-07-03 Chambly Quebec on Chambly Canal - Hello Canada - Bye America.... for now

This next portion of our trip was one which Ron and I thought to be one of the most interesting:  cruising the Chambly Canal in the province of Quebec.  We left Vermont and cleared Canadian customs, and you'll note below how narrow some portions of the Canal are; you'll also notice how these locks are 'hand-operated' - the lock personnel 'crank' the locks open and closed!  It was fascinating!  We docked in Chambly on a lock wall just prior to entering three 'step locks' the next morning...the lock master had to allow some extra water into the lock to give Spirit Journey the depth of water she needed to clear (we draft about 5.5'). 

A wider portion of the Canal.

Getting narrower...

Note how close we are to a road on starboard...

Narrow passage through a swing bridge...
Texas Ranger clears the swing bridge right behind us, as another boat waits to pass through, southbound.  Note how close we all are.

More narrow passages...


Another swing bridge...
We exited this lock, as you can see Texas Ranger getting ready to enter the lock on the other end.  It was "one boat at a time" given the size of the locks, and the size of our boats.


Yes, they are hand-cranking the lock doors open and closed!




Getting ready to leave a lock and continue on the narrow canal.
Lockmaster's office.  Fortunately, virtually all of the lock attendants were bi-lingual in English and French; or at least had an elementary command of English; so with our elementary level French skills, we could communicate enough to get specific messages across. 

As one would expect in everywhere...even at the locks!


Texas Ranger awaits it's turn locking through.
Docked in Chambly, on the Canal wall.
This is the three-step lock we will be passing through on a subsequent boat at a time.  We walked over from the Canal wall dockage to take a peek at what lies ahead.

A portion of the three-step lock; we will be locking 'down'.

At the exit of the three-step lock, lies another marina for small boats.

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