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Captain Log ID: 1046
Title: 1000 Islands to Brockville, Ontario
Boat Name(Id): BlueJacket ( 58)
Sailor Name(Id): Geoff Schultz ( 306)
Geo Region: Canada:Ontario
Date of Occurance: 2008-07-22
Latitude: N 44º   35.28'
Longitude: W 75º   40.859'
Sender (if email-in): wcz5101@NO_SPAM
Earlier log from "BlueJacket":  1045
Newer log from "BlueJacket":  1047
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Ahoy from Brockville, Ontario!

Yes, we've made it into Canada! Actually we've been crossing back a forth across the boarder as we've been working our way down the St. Lawrence, but we're now officially cleared into Canada. We departed Clayton yesterday morning in less than perfect conditions to view the stunning scenery of the 1000 Islands. We had low clouds, lots of haze and the occasional rain drop. That hardly makes for great viewing (or photography), but it was still beautiful. One can only imagine what the area looks like on a nice clear day.

The 1000 Islands is a cluster of over 1700 islands on the St. Lawrence between northern NY and Ontario. Many of the islands are very small and some are quite large. The St. Lawrence as cut channels through the islands and the water in many places is deep, but the channels can be very narrow. I relied heavily on my GPS, but at times it was a bit scary as I was placing a lot of faith in the accuracy of the charts. The water can go from 80' to 8' in a matter of a few feet. I just hoped that they had all of the shallow spots charted. I didn't hit anything, so it worked for me! There were places where the channel was probably only 50' and I even abandoned one route that I had laid out because it got even narrower.

Many of the pine covered islands have rock cliffs that descend straight down into the water. Houses are perched all over and many of the houses are incredible pieces of architecture. On some of the islands, people have constructed castles, and I'm talking CASTLES! We stopped at the Boldt Castle on Heart Island. ??? Boldt built this castle as a present for his wife starting in 1800. He even had the island's shape changed to resemble a heart. He spent $2.5M in 1800 dollars, but abandoned the construction when his wife died in 1804. One can only imagine what the castle would have looked like had he finished it. We also sailed by the Singer castle, but didn't stop there.

After departing the Boldt Castle, we cleared into Canada in Rockport, Ontario. It was amazingly simple. We pulled into a dock, I went to a pay phone and called Customs who took a few pieces of information (which didn't even include our passport numbers), and was given a cruising permit number that we have to display on the boat. Canada has some Draconian duties that they impose on wine and liquor (greater than 65%), but luckily we were carrying less than the allowed limit of 2 bottles of wine per person...In all of the cruising that we've done, we've never seen such stringent rules.

We then began working our way down the St. Lawrence with Brockville, Ontario as our planned destination. Unbeknown to us, it seems that the province of Quebec has a 2 week holiday which started this week, and it appears that they just love to come to Brockville. As a result the dock that we were assigned wouldn't become available until 4 PM and of course we had 2.5 kts of current with us, so we basically had to idle down the river so that we wouldn't arrive too early. So we arrived at 4 PM sharp, docked the boat and explored the town. In a nut shell, it's a wonderful little town. Very clean and the old parts of it have great architecture. There's not a lot in the way of restaurants, but they've got a lot of nice shops.

Today we'll continue our trek down the St. Lawrence and we'll anchor off of Long Sault island after passing through 2 relatively shallow locks which are in place for current control.

Unfortunately I have a very bad Internet connection from here, so I can't imbed any photos or upload any videos or photo albums. That will have to wait until Montreal.

-- Geoff & Sue