If you had a chance to read my introduction on the discussion board you would have learned that I am a Coast Guard officer. I have spent many years at sea both in the merchant fleet and the Coast Guard and all of my voyages have been with a specific purpose. In other words, I went where I was told to go and when I was told to go. My wife and I have had an agreement for years now that I would not get my own boat until I retired. I have spent half of my adult life at sea and it wouldn’t be fair to take off on my time at home. However, I am nearing retirement and working ashore now so we have collectively decided to dip our toes into the water. Fresh water. Calm waters (my wife’s demand). The answer for us was the Trent-Severn Waterway, a 386 kilometer series of rivers, lakes and canals from Trenton to Port Severn, Ontario.
This was not new territory for us. We had vacationed ashore on the Kawartha Lakes in the past but spending a week sailing the waterway was a dream come true. We could go when, where and how we wanted, entirely on our own schedule. We initially planned to go by power boat and stay at hotels and B&B’s along the way but they book up fast. Fortunately, we chose to houseboat and that is something that we have never regretted. While “sailing” in a houseboat is a much slower pace than I was used to, it was the perfect way to relax. We could tie up alongside a wall in one of many picturesque towns along the way or simply drop anchor in a lake for the night. We chose both. We spent most of our time in the Buckhorn and Bobcaygeon area (see map above) because you can travel through multiple lakes without having to lock in. “Locking in” is a process where your boat enters a lock and the water level is either raised or lowered to meet the next section of waterway. This picture shows a houseboat entering the lock. I can’t think of a more relaxing or ideal way to spend a week of vacation than sailing, or drifting, around one of the beautiful Kawartha Lakes, dining at fabulous little dockside restaurants or just unwinding. Yes, the fishing was just fine, too. If you are interested in learning more about the Trent-Severn waterway, “Wikipedia has a pretty informative listing for it at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trent%E2%80%93Severn_Waterway. If you are interested in house boating I would recommend Egan’s Houseboats: http://www.houseboat.on.ca/
Have you ever thought about spending some time on the water? This is an easy, fun and really relaxing way to do it. They can teach you everything that you need to know quickly and no license is required to operate a houseboat.