Sunday, May 29, 2016
BOATERS HELPING BOATERS
Today was an extra special day. On the Severn River, there is a great spot to stop for a meal, called the Waubic Inn. The location was first settled in 1911 by a family who set up a remote inn, only accessible by water. They’d pick up guests by boat who’d come north by train for a holiday and take them to the inn. The family sold the property in 1944 and the inn burnt down a year later. Later, a restaurant was built and it continues to operate in the summers today to the delight and great pleasure of cottagers and boaters. We decided it would be our destination for breakfast and what a treat it was. We arrived and tied up on their docks in a fairly narrow section of the Severn River in serious cottage country at 0915 hours. We each had variations of eggs, bacon, sausage, pancakes, home fries and all the coffee you could consume. After finishing, we decided to call it brunch.
Continuing on our journey we went through Swift Rapids lock. This site was a significant power plant that the province established in 1917. For the Trent-Severn Waterway, it was initially set up as another marine railway. Later, in the 1960’s, the marine railway was removed and replaced by a very large lock that has a 49’ rise from one lake/level to the next.
Following that is a lovely run through more of the Severn River, Sparrow Lake and on to Lock 42 at Washago, at the top of Lake Couchiching. Our final destination was Orillia on the south west shore of Lake Couchiching at the Port of Orillia. Dave, from Sir Tugley had arranged to buy some docking lines and anchor rode from Redpoint Ropes in Orillia and I had ordered some stuff from them too. Unfortunately, the owner changed his mind about delivering the purchases to us at the Port of Orillia, so we needed to find other means of picking them up. After a while, Dave and Judy met up with local boaters, Bob and Wenda on a boat named Endless Summer. They volunteered to drive Dave to pick up the purchases and later volunteered to drive me to Best Buy to replace our camera, which had died an unexpected death.
I was raised in Orillia up to the age of almost 13 and when I learned Bob and Wenda had spent most of their lives in Orillia the dialogue got very interesting for me. We learned:
-Bob’s 1st cousin was partners with my uncle in a local insurance business
-Bob and Wenda are good friends with Fred and Cathy from Nova Scotia, owners of a sailboat named Winona, whom we’d met on multiple occasions in the North Channel. Bob and Fred worked together in police services
-Bob and Wenda know our good friends Randy and Audrey, owners of an American Tug named Heart Tug
and on and on…
On a very personal note, on the way back from Best Buy, Wenda stopped at 216 Nottawasaga Street, where I spent the first 13 years of my life. Dave and I got out so he could take a picture of me standing in front of the house. The current owners (since 1997) were sitting outside and we sent and spoke with them and had quite a conversation about the house and what had been done to it over the years. I can’t wait to send a copy of the photo to my sister.
This blog is a round about way of saying, wherever you go on a boat, there are endless examples of how boaters love to help each other in any way they can. How great is that!!!
Wings & Tug'n in a lock
Brunch at the Waubic Inn
Tug'n and Wings in a lock
My childhood home in Orillia