Between locks 3&4 Merrickville.
Our camping spot for the night.
We have been so impressed with Parks Canada and the service and accommodation they offer to paddlers.
We’ve camped so cheaply ($5.01 per person per night, when they charge. Also if you arrive after the lockstation closes and leave before it opens you don’t pay).
The lock staff are very helpful. Most lockstations have bathrooms and places to charge phones and batteries.
The Rideau Canal is a treasure and I’m so glad we’ve discovered it for ourselves.
I would highly recommend the route to any paddler interested in natural beauty and history.
Makes me proud to be a Canadian and so thankful that the government has preserved this.
9:30pm and we’re all tucked up in our tent, lights out. We hear young guys talking outside. As a mother to a young guy these boys sound like they might be 17-20 year old. Maybe students from the nearby private prep school?
There a few of them, maybe three. And they’re talking about jumping in the lock. (This is forbidden, but they’re teenagers and there’s no one around, well except us and the other paddlers camped by the 2nd lock, also retired to their tents.)
After a lot of talking and posturing and laughter we hear a countdown and finally a splash.
It’s a chilly night so we know they won’t be lingering and sure enough within a few minutes of climbing out they are gone into the night with a story to tell, which is the whole point!
I felt myself smiling the whole time, first listening to their bravado and challenge, reminding me of my own son and knowing he’d be in the thick of it.
Smiling as someone finally jumped because it will be a good story, and we all need those.
Smiling because this pandemic has taken so much from us all collectively but here we are camping in a beautiful countryside town in rural Canada, listening to flowing water and laughing kids.
It’s a good life.
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