Water, Water Everywhere

Monday, June 21, 2010 Road Junkies 0 Comments

Day 52:  Ottawa, ON to Bowmanville, ON
Ottawa offered up more interesting sights as we explored the city while looking for letterboxes.  In the Ottawa River near Parliament Hill is a small, low-lying island.  For some reason, sea gulls have adopted the island as their nesting home. Thousands of gulls cover the island, and one would suspect there are many, many eggs there as well.
 The raucous cries of the gulls were a constant background noise when we visited the Hill on a quiet Sunday morning.  Although it doesn't appear on maps becaus it is so small, we're told the island is known as Hull Island, perhaps because the city of Hull lies across the river.  Descriptively, Gull Island might be a better fit.

This morning we had the good fortune to witness a very interesting weed harvester on the Rideau Canal.  Manufactured by a Canadian firm, the Aquamarine Lowrider mechanically removes nuisance vegetation and algae from the canal.
Last month we noticed a profusion of dandelions on the lawns of residences and commercial buildings and learned that the use of most chemical herbicides has been banned in Canada.  Aquamarine, the manufacturer of this ingenious device, offers a line of equipment for environmentally safe cleaning, including a trash hunter to be used in rivers and lakes.

Searching for letterboxes took us to a couple of human-engineered waterfalls today, one in Ottawa and one in Port Hope.  Hogback Falls in Ottawa was formed by the creation of a water-control dam to harness the waters of the Rideau River.
Built as a part of the Rideau Canal project in the 19th century, today a park around the falls provides trails and walking paths offering visitors opportunites to enjoy this functional beauty.

Daily Stats
Miles driven:  261
Letterboxes:  3 (+1 hitchhiker)
Gulls on Hull Island:  8,502
Moms with strollers walking near canal:  117