Sue and I enjoyed a day off skiing today.
We popped down to MEC (Mountain Equipment Co-op) for a bit of retail therapy. I’d planned on getting another pair of Keen Targhee ll trail shoes, but a quick look at the prices led to the speedy conclusion that buying any gear over here would be foolish to say the least. Due to the dire exchange rate, what used to be a good deal is now at least 30% more than we would pay in the UK.
Thank you, Brexit people.
So we left.
Helen kindly dropped us off beside the Rideau Canal for a 7 km stroll back to Quinterra Court. We went via the Hog's Back Falls, officially known as the Prince of Wales Falls, but rarely referred to by this name. They are a series of artificial waterfalls on the Rideau River. The falls are located just north of Mooney's Bay and the point where the Rideau Canal splits from the Rideau River.
Prior to the construction of the Rideau Canal, these were a gentle set of rapids originally known as Three Rock Rapids. The name Hog's Back came into use shortly before canal construction. Civil Engineer John MacTaggart, in 1827, described them as “a noted ridge of rocks, called the Hog’s Back, from the circumstances of raftsmen with their wares [timber rafts] sticking on it in coming down the stream.” They were navigable by canoe, no portage was required.
The head of the original rapids is now buried beneath the canal dam, but the lower section of the rapids can still be seen today and is shown above.
This location marks where the route of the Rideau Canal leaves the Rideau River and enters a man made canal leading to the Ottawa locks. A series of locks lowers boats from this location to the Ottawa River.
Sue is pictured below, next to the Rideau Canal that is used as an 8 km skating route when temperatures are a bit lower than they have been of late. In fact, today brought the colder, sunnier weather that is more familiar to us on these trips. Consequently the canal should be open for skating in the next few days.
Here’s one of the locks near the falls.
Meanwhile, Susan enjoyed an energetic ski from P3 to MacKenzie-King and back.
Unfortunately ‘social media’ has failed to isolate us from the woes of the world. Luckily the Canadians are very sympathetic when we (jokingly?) describe ourselves as a refugee from Trump (Susan), and refugees from Brexit (Sue and me). There’s an all pervading sadness, and not a small level of fear amongst Canadians concerning these issues, in particular in relation to their nearest neighbour.