Lake O’s High Water Levels

Hi folks, do you live in southern Ontario in close vicinity to Lake Ontario and or the Saint Lawrence River? If so then you have probably been effected by the rising water levels of our water ways in one form or another.

If you follow my blog or any of my social media platforms then you are probably aware that I basically live on the water lol, (at least that is what my wife tells people). If I’m not working on a boat I am spending time on our personal boat our out fishing with friends and or family. Most of my water activities are spent on the eastern end of Lake Ontario and the St Lawrence River system.

Back in 2017 Lake Ontario, and the St Lawrence, saw some of the highest water levels it has ever witnessed on record. The levels reached a staggering 83cm above the average water level for this time of year.

Now just 2 years later and we are currently sitting at 76cm above the average for this time of year, (or for those of you that know what I’m talking about lol, 1.632 Meters above Chart Datum as of 16:00hrs this afternoon), and it is still rising. We are not expecting the levels to stabilize over the coming weeks and in other articles I’ve read, predictions are that we will see at least another 10cm to 12cm before levels begin to level off and start to receed.

It is expected that once again we will see record breaking water levels due to the excessive water flow comming over Niagara Falls from Lake Erie. Along with some very rainy weather we’ve had this spring. Niagara Falls let’s in %83 to %85 of the inflow to lake Ontario the remainder is from the tributaries leading to the lake.

Niagara Falls (picture credit to http://www.niagaraparks.com )

In 2017 the levels across lake Ontario and the St Lawrence river decimated some waterfront properties and washed away shorelines right across the southern part of the province.

Toronto 2017 water levels

Fish habitat was disturbed, fish were found in water treatment facilities and in some cases were found swimming along flooded streets and public parks that had been submerged. The water levels this year are going to get even higher.

People have been stating to me that they don’t understand why the province won’t open the dams along the St Lawrence so that Lake Ontario will settle down a bit? Well the best answer that I have seen is as follows

– The great lakes basin, the Ottawa river, and the St Lawrence River, all merge in Montreal Harbor. The levels in Montreal have already exceeded the record water levels, set in 2017. For every 1 inch that the Iroquois, and Massena Dams allow lake Ontario to drain, it will increase the water levels in Montreal, (and further down the St Lawrence river) by 11 inches. Montreal and further down river are already in some major flooding problems of their own so we simply cannot allow any more flow out of the lake than what we are already letting loose.

Iroquois dam 2018

I know around my home territory, in the Quinte region, businesses and properties are in desperate need for the levels to drop. However, I fear the increase in levels will be getting quite a bit worse before it gets better

I know at work, the levels are taking its toll on the locals, as even the slightest east wind now can affect the Glenora Ferry service. People in the area depend on this service to get them to and from work, taking them from the island to the mainland and back again. Businesses in the area depend on the ferry to allow their clients to be able to get to their locations, especially this time of year. if the ferry has to shut Down for any length of time, it can be devastating.

Glenora Ferry service leaving Adolphus Town

Businesses close to the water in the area are getting flooded out. The Picton Harbour Inn, (in Picton), have seen their docks starting to go under water, as well as their parking lot area has just started to get its first sign of flooding. The INN has placed water barrels along the docks in an attempt to hold the docks down and not RIP them out of place. So far this tactic has worked but if the water raises much more I’m afraid it may not be enough.

Picton Harbor Inn Docks (photo credit to Picton Harbor Inn Facebook page ) ,http://www.pictonharbourinn.com/

All the marinas and Yaught clubs in the Picton area are fighting to keep their docks afloat and their boaters from leaving.

Boaters are not putting their boats in the water yet due to the levels, potentially costing tens of thousands of dollars worth of expected income to these marinas for this time of year, not to mention possibly costing tens of thousands in repairs to equipment and the docks themselves. This is most likely indicative of all the areas that line the shores of Lake Ontario and the St Lawrence river throughout the province.

River Front Pub ( Napanee)
Public boat launch on Haybay ( Bay Of Quinte )

Last week I did put my boat in the water and it was quite the adventure to say the least (link to blog https://oldsaltydog.blog/2019/05/20/the-inaugural-voyage-part-2/ ) however what I noticed was all the debris in the lake, from trees, and garbage to lumber and even an overturned row boat that someone probably had on shore ready to use this summer floating down stream. I mean sure there is usually some branches/ tree stumps, and things like that during the spring time, but there has been an unusual amount of other debris this year as well.

I hope for everyone affected by the water levels this year that it all turns out ok in the end, if you are putting a boat in the water soon, please take extra care and look out for that debris that can really put a damper in your day.

Also let me know in the comment section what you think of my blog.

Cheers

The Great Canadian, Cabbot Trail

Here is a link to an article I just read about doing the famous loop on Canada’s eastern coast, The Cabbot Trail.

http://www.bbc.com/storyworks/your-discovery/cabot-trail-drive-is-a-quest-for-the-best

Back in 2015 I spent a season in Mabou Harbor Cape Breton, working on a lobster fishing vessel. After the season ended a friend of mine flew out and we ended up driving the famous loop before making our way back to Ontario.

It was an amazing experience and one I can’t wait to do again in the future.

I’ll post the link to my story I wrote about working the lobster season below.

LAST POST1!!! for My Fishing Adventure on The East Coast

A Little Hidden Gem INN Picton ON.

After the Inaugural voyage of the Salty Dog(Follow link to read about the Inaugural voyage. https://oldsaltydog.blog/2019/05/20/the-inaugural-voyage-part-2/ )I started thinking about the small drip (leak) we had found on the transom, and although it was not a significant leak it still had me worried. On the way back home and after dropping off Friends, Peter, and Erin, to their respected vehicles I headed over to Robs place where his wife and my wife, had prepared a nice steak dinner awaiting our arrival.After dinner we all gathered round their TV and watched the finale of the Game Of Thrones. During the show I started thinking about that leak on the boat and decided after the show I would head back and make sure it was in fact, a small leak lol.

At midnight I finally got back to the boat to my great relief she was still afloat, LOL, so I loaded my sleeping gear into the boat and checked the engine room for damages. There was actually a substantial amount of water accumulation at the bottom, or at least more than I had hoped for ( approx 5 cups) Still not enough to be much of a concern but enough to know I will have to do something about it in the near future.After a long day it was off to bed for a well deserved bit of R & R.

In the morning I woke up early and immediately checked the water levels in the bilge. It hadn’t risen much over night so I figured its was a perfect opportunity to get out and eat something lol.I decided to head into picton to one of my favorite little spots.Now over the past few years a friend of mine Scott, his wife Sophie, and his Brother David, have been running the Picton Harbour Inn, and although they have all been working tirelessly around the clock, to make sure their guests have some great experiences, with new, state of the art rooms, and great service. They have also revamped the entire property both inside and out.

In doing so, they actually re-invented the harbour, the Inn, and the restaurant ( a part of the Inn) not to mention this Inn has been a big part of the towns history. Scott, and his team have renovated the much needed and very dated, restaurant over a year ago and it looks great. If you pay attention to the decorations and decor within the restaurant it has a very distinct nautical theme, from old ship pictures that used to Harbour in Picton, to the nautical lines tying back the curtains over the windows. Of course it is right up my alley, lol.

They have taken the shoreline and transformed it, by installing some great landscaping, new docks, used by guests, local guides as well as transiants coming to the area and looking for a good meal and a possible room for the night.

They have installed a fountain in the harbor as well, which lights up at night and is a nice little addition to the area. The locals are relishing in its glory once again, and It has become a local hot spot for breakfast and lunch, the food, is simply, amazing.

From what I understand, the restaurant gets much of their foods from local farmers, and they support as much local business and community as they can, Ok I also have to mention the service of the Lighthouse staff, talk about personable people, it’s like you’ve known them for years when you first walk through the door until you walk right back out again, just a fun atmosphere all round.

One of the best parts about the Inn, is its location. It is located right at the end of the Harbour closest to the town of Picton. I’m telling ya, if you ever pass by this area you must give this little hidden gem a try.

In recent years the Picton Harbour INN, has been featured on many fishing shows and is a fan favorite for fisherman from all over North America.

The Lighthouse restaurant.

The Inaugural Voyage (part 2)

It was Sunday May 19th the day had finally arrived. I gathered a couple of my neighbors and good friends Rob, Mike, and, Pete to assist me in the first ever voyage of the Salty Dog. Mike unfortunately, was unable to make the voyage, however was able to assist in the launch of the vessel by using his truck which was much more capable than mine.

We still needed to test a few vitals of the boat, and I wanted to give her a good run as to test her abilities. I figured a 3 hour, 35 mile tour should be a decent test for the old girl, and little did I know just how right I was.

Well of course and just as expected, nothing was going to plan. After a few quick tests and trying to get the vessel running prior to taking her to the lake we find out that the ignition coil was defective. Should be an easy fix right? Nope, wrong.

With not much in the way of stores being open on a Sunday of a long weekend we had no choice but to start harvesting coils from other sources. We tried getting one off Mikes boat. It was the wrong size. We tried going to Mike’s shop. He had a brand new one there, It too was broken, we thought one might be over in Robs garage, it wasn’t. Canadian Tire was open, but they were sold out. Part source in Bellwville had what we needed AND, was open. Rob hopped on his Motorcycle and was off to get the part.

After a couple hours, Rob returned with the part. We got it installed quickly along with a couple sparkplugs and we were off to a nearby river to try and get the old girl started. A few tries, and SUCCESS, Salty Dog started, and actually sounded pretty good.

It was now after 2pm and getting late in the day, but I still had a bit of hope that we would still get Salty Dog launched this day.

Once in Deseronto, we launched old Salty Dog for the first time.

We gently lowered old Salty in the water and checked for leaks in the engine compartment below deck. So far so good. No water, “well, thats a good sign” I thought to myself as I let out a rather large sigh. Next was a test run around the Bay surrounding Deseronto. To the bridge, a few circles (testing the steering) and then back to the launch again.

My wife and Robs wife were standing on the dock when we returned. You would think this was because they came in support to see the launch right? Nope, it was because I was an idiot and forgot my keys for the car I left at our destination the night before so we could get back home once we got to the marina, and had to call my wife to come and drop them off to me before we left for our journey. LOL.

A good 15 minutes or so of looking around and last second adjustments and Salty Dog was good to go, she was all warmed up, one last check in the engine room and POOF, we found water . Wait what? Where did that water come from? It wasn’t much but enough that had me a little concerned lol. Well that’s what these tests are for right?

Now thinking (do I put her back on the trailer and pull her out of the water again?) “Hell’s no! “. (Lol) not for a dribble of water anyway. I call to my now “engineer” (Rob) who was directly beside me, a quick diagnosis of what it was? Tightened a loose hose clamp, and there was a very slow drip from a bolt on the housing, “PHEW”, (almost lost my Kool there), anyway no big deal. So we started off on our days journey. It was now 330pm and we had a 3 to 4 hour tour ahead of us.

Just as were were getting started a coworker Erin, messaged me asking how the voyage was going? “We were just starting” I told her. and since Mike wasn’t able to make the trip I had an extra spot so I offered Erin a spot aboard, and we picked her up on route 10 miles ahead of our starting spot at the public launch over at the Glenora Ferry docks. A quick stop to let Erin Aboard and we continued on our journey.

At this point the vessel was running very smoothly. I had noticed once we tried getting the boat on plane, she seemed a tad sluggish but I chocked that up to some old gas and full tanks of fuel along with a 4 man crew now making the vessel quite heavy. Anyway I didn’t pay much attention to that at this point.

After about an hour of slowly cruising at about 8 knots east in adolphus Reach towards the Gap. (The Gap is an opening in the Bay Of Quinte, between Picton County and Amerst Island, that allows access to Lake Ontario.) I thought it a good idea to take a couple pictures of the group. So I stopped the boat and positioned us to what I thought would be a good photo. Lined the gang on the back deck and as I was about to take the shot, everyone was leaning on the back rail and , SNAP. The rail gave way and all three passengers fell backwards into the lake. Rob did a backwards summersalt hitting his back off the swim platforms ladder, Erin’s legs and hands trying desperately to cling onto the side of the boat and not fall into the freezing 54° water, well she couldn’t hold on for long and (SPLASH) into the lake she went. And Pete fell backwards breaking our flag pole and landing right onto the swim platform. Peter really didn’t get too wet.

I quickly went and turned the engine off as everyone was right around the prop the I went to see if everyone was ok. I could reach Erin who was gasping for air, so I grabbed her arm and pulled her up on the swim deck Pete was already in the boat and then I went to give rob a hand but he was half way up on the platform already Pete was busy trying to salvage the broke handrail LOL. Everyone was safe and so I figured now was a great time for a photo OP, not really the one I was looking for originally, but this will do nicely LOL

After a couple moments to make sure everyone was ok and to stop laughing uncontrollably at the situation we got everyone out of their wet clothing and into dry ones. Ok now it’s time to just get to our destination I think.

I go to start the motor back up, and nothing. Now were dead in the water. A soaking wet and shaking cold Rob was quick to have a look at the motor we used ether to get the motor started, something I never want to do but it was necessary to just get going at this point, once she started we were on the road, or water I guess, once again. I got the boat up on plane, and this time and cruised at a cool 30mph on the way to our destination to Waupoose Marina.

Now 730 PM and just pulling into the marina we pulled up to my slip and there is a nice 35 foot cruiser beside where I need to park. No problem. I pull up so I could back into the slip and when I try going into reverse, nothing, she quit on me again. I tried to start her, and nothing again. Rob once again on his belly almost hanging upside Down took only seconds to get her going once again. And we backed into the slip, shut her down, tied her off and the inaugural trip had come to an end.

So I guess she’s not perfect, but that’s to be expected of a 1979 boat I guess. So looking back on this Inaugural voyage.

RECAP

A bit of a rough start I know, Some forgotten keys, a broken rail, a missing flag pole, a motor that needs some TLC, there is a very slow drip into the engine compartment that I must fix ASAP, A trip that should have been a total of 5 hours door to door ended up being 11.5hrs, and to top it all off, I only dropped 3 out of 3 passengers into the lake on the first trip out. (SIGH) I now have some fixing to do but all in all it was an adventure and a memory of a life time LOL this is exactly what Salty Dog was meant to do. (Create Memmories) now let’s hope the next trip is a bit less memorable lol.

The Inaugural Voyage. (Part 1)

It has been some time anticipating the first Voyage for the “Salty Dog”. Infact I have been looking forward to this day for years, before I even acquired the vessel.

Recently I watched the movie (The Green Lantern) I know , a weird reference, right? and it made me wonder!

If you are familiar with this movie, then you know that the ring of the green lanterns, actually seek out their masters, The rings will travel by themselves when a master is about to perish in search of their next master, whom will become United with the ring and become the next “Green Lantern”. This made me wonder about my new vessel, why?

Well this past winter, I was not actively looking for a new boat, at least not at that time. Salty Dog, formally named, (Groovin) was offered to me by a good friend of mine over this past winter. In fact the odds were definitely not in my favor to acquire her at all. At the time, I was not working, I was on Unemployment (which I haven’t been on for over 20 years), my cash was going towards household Bill’s. However, never the less, the boat was offered at a price that was too hard to pass up, and an agreement made. Before I knew it, I was the proud new owner of a vessel that would soon become the new “Salty Dog”

Now Salty Dog, actually started its voyage over 2 years ago, in search of a new Captain, she came from a family up near Huntsville who had obviously taken very good care of her. She was on route to auction, headed to Windsor and eastern Ontario when my friend Brian was approached and asked if he was interested in purchasing her. Although Brian wasn’t really looking for a boat, he didn’t hesitate when the offer seemed too good to be true for such a fine vessel. Apparently the previous owner may have got a dirty look and some words were exchanged by his misses about the agreed upon price LOL. So instead of going towards Windsor, she was now doing a 180° turn and heading towards The Quinte region. Now Groovin Although she has needed some TLC mostly due to the fact she had been sitting on dry land for nearl 2 seasons before I finally got a hold of her. She had made her way to this area, put herself in the right circumstance to make sure I found her. This is why I say she reminded me of the Green Lantern movie. She had been searching for a master or (captain), and it took her very close to 2 years to finally get a hold of one,

Anyway so since my last vessel (Sea’s The Day # 2) had its misshap in Picton almost 2 years ago ( around the same time Salty Dog started her voyage to find me) I have been dreaming of the day I would be able to put another one of my own vessels back in the water and begin boating once again.

PIC OF SEA’S THE DAY #2

I had described in one of my latest blogs

Link – ( https://oldsaltydog.blog/2019/05/06/setting-up-my-new-boat/ )

that I have changed my priorities and need to switch my set up on this new vessel. Instead of using this vessel as a fishing boat, to set her up as a navigation/ pleasure/ &personal fishing vessel. I intend on using this vessel primarily with my wife to explore the St Lawrence river, and Lake Ontario. However for the first run My wonderful wife will not be on the old Salty Dog.

Stay tuned for part 2.

Cruising The Great Lakes.

As a former, (and possible future) employee of a passenger vessel of the St Lawrence seaway and Ottawa River systems, the Canadian Empress, and the St Lawrence Cruise Lines.

https://www.stlawrencerivercruise.com/

I find this a very interesting read. When working in the industry I really didn’t see too many cruise lines that offered or does exactly what the St Lawrence Cruise Lines offers their passengers along the river. And although in the below article link, the vessels and companies mentioned will be offering a somewhat different kind of cruising experiences for their passengers. It certainly will be interesting to see such an increase of activity in the river and Great Lakes cruising industry and right in my back yard to boot.

Some very interesting passenger vessels setting their sights on the great Lakes for the coming years.

An interesting read about cruising the Great Lakes and how it is becoming a booming industry.

Follow this link to read about it

https://expo.cleveland.com/life-and-culture/g66l-2019/05/1da58e9525280/cruising-the-great-lakes-more-ships-more-passengers-more-stops-in-cleveland.html

Calm seas, don't make great sailors

The Eternal Traveller

Remembering past journeys, recording current trips and planning for the next one!

RTW Roxy

23 years old girl travelling solo on a motorcycle.

The Eclectic Shooter

My photography journey as a hobbyist

TESSEROLOGY

A MOSAIC OF BITS AND PIECES ON TRAVEL, LIFE AND TIMES

Mitch Teemley

The Power of Story

The Journey of My Left Foot (whilst remembering my son)

I have Malignant Melanoma, my son had Testicular Cancer

Poopin' in the Woods: An Ultrarunning Saga

Experience ultra and trail running through the eyes of an average Joe

An Unexpected Journey

From Mexico to Canada along the Pacific Crest Trail

✨The Irresponsible Blogger✨

.... a girl running wild with the wolves....

Travel Tales of Life

Travelers. Adventurers. Storytellers.

Our Travel Blog

Travel and tourism news, special promotions for tours, cruises, resorts, specialty travel.

Rellbell Travels

Leave A Piece of Your Heart All Over the World

www.iccebrand.com

Back Recovery

garyfultz

Outdoor adventure stories and picture truths

The Blog of Travel

Motorbikes, dogs and a lot of traveling.

over the water

sermons, poems, and other words

Green Life Blue Water

Where Eco Meets Life