Thursday, July 5, 2018

We F***ing Love Ottawa

Even the pastries display that trademark self-deprecating Canadian sense of humor
Is this a great city or what? The buses are hybrids, a display 50 yards from where we are docked educates visitors about global warming, an urban beehive is coming soon, and best of all, the tour boats on the Rideau Canal are electric.
The Q.E. Dr. cruises a route that parallels a road of the same name.
On July 3, we docked literally in the shadow of Parliament, just steps from the famous Chateau Laurier.

As it turns out we are just down the dock from the oddly named S.S. Queen Elizabeth Dr

It's an all-metal, low, narrow, barge-style boat on which you can take a quiet, low-environmental impact cruise.

Does that sound familiar?

We Have Battery Envy

A friendly crew member, Adam, cheerfully answered our many questions. 

  • She uses lithium-ion batteries weighing 400 lbs apiece. 
  • A single one of these batteries has the same capability as our 1,500 lbs of lead-acid batteries! (oooh, we're jealous!) 
  • She's made of aluminum (even more jealous!) 
  • All materials Canadian and locally sourced
  • She has steering stations at both ends, so you never have to do a donut in the narrow canal
A second eco-tour boat is named for our hero, Colonel By.

Today We Descend

We are coming to the end of the Rideau Canal and about to enter the Ottawa River--where we'll travel about 100 miles to Montreal.

To get to the river, we'll descend a famous staircase of eight locks. The passage is expected to take two and a half hours. Perfect for a SlowBoat.

This 1867 print shows the Parliament to the right and the staircase of 8 locks in the middle. Just picture a litte canal boat descending . . . they're virtually the same today as when they were built in the 1830s

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