Thursday, 30 June 2005
Day 50 Thursday June 30 Charlevoix to Leland
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FishtownThe National Weather Service forecast this morning was "SOUTH WINDS 10 TO 20 KNOTS BECOMING SOUTHWEST 15 TO 25 KNOTS EARLY AFTERNOON. SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS LIKELY EARLY THIS MORNING. WAVES BUILDING TO 2 TO 4 FEET. .TONIGHT...SOUTHWEST WINDS 15 TO 25 KNOTS BECOMING WEST OVERNIGHT. WAVES BUILDING TO 4 TO 6 FEET." It was not very encouraging but we cleared the Charlevoix bridge at 8:00AM and made it 36 miles to Leland MI by 12:15PM. The waves were more like 2-5 feet but most of the time we took them on the bow and it was not too uncomfortable. There was no problem getting a slip without a reservation and at 6:30PM there were still 7 vacant slips. Lealand is a big discovery for us. It is a really neat town with everything close to the harbor. The feature attraction is 'Fishtown' which runs along the Carp or Leland River. All the old sheds are either gift shops or sell food. One is a wine and cheese shop. This is a real Michigan summer place with lots of fancy cottages and homes. There are two gourmet restaurants beside the Carp River. Tomorrow the forecast is calling for waves 5-7 feet so we may just stay here a second night. Lat 45.03 Long 85.76

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Posted on 06/30/2005 7:18 PM by Bob Duthie
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Wednesday, 29 June 2005
Day 49 Wednesday June 29 Charlevoix 'smurf' houses
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Smurf houseToday we walked around Charlevoix to see the 'smurf' houses. There are 27 buildings in the town that were designed and built by Earl Young in the 1930's (see photo). They are unique with curved cedar roofs, stone walls, and dripping chimneys. Some use large boulders. There is a nice 17,000 sq ft house for sale here for a mere $9.9 million. The afternoon was spent shopping and planning the rest of the trip to Chicago. We will stick to the east side of Lake Michigan and cross the lake either from Holland or New Buffalo depending on the weather. Lat 45.32 Long 85.26

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Posted on 06/29/2005 4:24 PM by Bob Duthie
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Tuesday, 28 June 2005
Day 48 Tuesday June 28 Charlevoix
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CharlevoixRather than stay another day on Beaver Island we decided to head for Charlevoix. It was rough (2-5 ft waves) most of the way with a south wind on our starboard quarter. However, we made it safely arriving exactly on time for the bridge opening at 1200. We signed up for two days at the municipal docks where we stayed 6 years ago. They park boats two deep here as dock space is limited so our boat is beside the dock. Next year there will be all new docks. The town has changed with no great Ace hardware across the street and a fudge shop where there used to be a really good art gallery. However, all the smurf houses are still here as is the movie theater and grocery store. We had to take a taxi to do the laundry as there is no coin laundry at the marina. In the evening the folks from the Ocean Alexander in front of us came over and we talked about all the things that go wrong with boats for several hours. Mark is a car dealer from Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin. He said we should burn a quart of transmission fluid occasionally to keep the injectors clean on the engine. Lat 45.32 Long 85.26

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Posted on 06/28/2005 4:20 PM by Bob Duthie
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Monday, 27 June 2005
Day 47 Monday June 27 Crossing Gray's Reef channel
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Gray's Reef LightCell phone access to the Internet appears to be a lost cause now. The computer refuses to connect. Cingular had 3 different people work on the problem, and our office experts have also worked on the problem. I have put many hours into trying this and that and nothing has restored service. Accordingly we will only be able to update the blog when we have wifi access. Today we traveled through the dreaded Gray's Reef channel. This area is the shipping graveyard of Lake Michigan. It is also like the Bermuda Triangle with boats just disappearing. (see photo of Gray's Reef Light). However, we made it to Beaver Island safely and tied up at the Beaver Island Marina because the guide book said they had Internet service as compared to the Town Dock that does not have Internet service. The Internet service is nothing more than an analog phone line which you can only use during 'off' hours at the marina office. Beaver Island has to be one of the most remote areas in the USA as it is 33 miles by water to the nearest mainland town, Charlevoix. The ferry only runs from April 11 to December 23rd. There are several good restaurants and the super market is close to the dock. Mavis found a wine there that is no longer available in Nashville. Lat 45.75 Long 85.51

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Posted on 06/27/2005 1:07 PM by Bob Duthie
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Sunday, 26 June 2005
Day 46 Sunday June 26 Mackinac Island
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Grand Hotel at Mackinac IslandDinner at the Grand Hotel (see photo) was a sumptuous 6 course dinner. You could have venison but we chose the roast beef. The Grand has to be one of the last great railroad hotels left over from the early 1900's. Everything is well done with a harp player in the lobby and and extra coffee service. You still have to wear jackets and ties after 6:00PM. While I had a jacket I borrowed a tie from the concierge. Women are supposed to wear skirts with pants outlawed but they seem to be ignoring that rule. This morning we toured Fort Mackinac and learned more about the 3 Confederates that were interned their in the summer of 1852. They had the run of the fort and were not locked up. Two were Generals and one was a judge. George Barrow, William Harding, and Joseph Guild were the wealthy Tennesseans that refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Union after Nashville was captured. We had to vacate the marina at 1:00PM and sailed across to Mackinaw City. We have now completed the Great Loop since this is a harbor we stayed in 6 years ago when we brought the Katy Leigh from Erie PA to Kentucky Lake. Tomorrow we start our 2nd loop! Lat 45.78 Long 84.72

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Posted on 06/26/2005 5:34 PM by Bob Duthie
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Saturday, 25 June 2005
Day 45 Saturday June 25 Mackinac Island
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Mavis enjoys the lilacsIt's the Fudge Capital of the USA. We made it to Mackinac Island in 5 hours from De Tour and got a slip without difficulty. Mackinac seems to be prospering with crowds of people, dozens of fudge shops, museums and gorgeous Victorian buildings. Everything seems to be newly painted. The lilacs are just about over but the clump in the photo was right at the marina. I checked a history book and determined that during the Civil War Tennessean southern sympathizers were if fact kept in the Fort here. Tonight we will have dinner at the Grand Hotel. There is wifi at the docks at $3.95 for two hours. Considering it is two days since we could get to the Internet it is worth it. Lat 45.84 Long 84.61

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Posted on 06/25/2005 3:11 PM by Bob Duthie
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Friday, 24 June 2005
Day 44 Friday June 24 De Tour Harbor
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1980's 42ft Gulfstar ketchRather than spend another bouncy day going to Mackinac Island, we decided that when we entered the Strait at De Tour if it was too rough we would turn around and stay in the De Tour Harbor. The forecast called for 15-25 Kts and when we got out the in open it was rough so we tied up at De Tour Village. A very nice friendly place and since we got here at 9:30AM (just 9 miles from the marina on Drummond Island) it was like getting a day off. We had lunch in a small restaurant in town, read books, and talked with Mark and LuAnn on a beautiful 1980's 42ft Gulfstar ketch that was laid up beside us. They taught Mavis a lot about varnishing which should pay off when we get back home. Mark had just finished sailing from Chicago to Mackinac on the boat in a single handed race. It took 60 hours as the winds were not very good. Hopefully we can make it to Mackinac tomorrow. Lat 46.0 Long 83.9

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Posted on 06/24/2005 2:56 PM by Bob Duthie
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Thursday, 23 June 2005
Day 43 Thursday June 23 Drummond
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DrummondAll the weather forecasts were good. We left Blind River at 8:00AM in overcast. Soon the waves were 3-5 ft and we were bouncing around pretty good. Then the radio started talking about severe thunderstorms for Northern Lake Michigan. We went 5 miles extra to reduce the rolling as it was a southwest wind. Finally off the northern coast of Drummond the waves settled down and the sun came out. The water is a beautiful green color (see photo). The marina at Drummond is also the US Customs port of entry. We just provided our Canadian entry number and the US Customs Sticker number. The lady filled in a form and we were back in the USA. We walked a mile to the grocery store but found it was just being set up for the summer. Next we went over to the Post Office and found it closed. However, the local museum was open and free. The island was settled by Finnish people around 1905. Back at the marina we rented a Ford Expedition ($8 to the family restaurant or $15 to the gourmet restaurant). We choose the $8 option. What a monster of a vehicle. We probably used up $8 in gas. Lat 46.0 Long 83.75

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Posted on 06/23/2005 2:55 PM by Bob Duthie
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Wednesday, 22 June 2005
Day 42 Wednesday June 22 Whaleback Channel
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rocks outside South Benjamin IslandThe photo shows some of the rocks outside South Benjamin Island last evening. I cruised over in the dingy when the waves had settled down. Around 1:00AM the wind started to blow from the north west in the anchorage. The flags on the mast bang against the side stays and kept waking us up. Finally at 2:00AM I had to go out and take them down. Slept like a log the rest of the night and the anchor did not budge. We hauled up the anchor at 8:00AM. The water was so clear we could see how it had buried itself in the mud on the bottom 12 feet down. We cruised the Whaleback Channel to Blind River. Blind River was the white pine capital of Canada at one time with a big mill. Now there is only a small operation left. The marina here is large and well run but lacks boats. Everyone is concerned that this will be a slow year. A 1978 41 ft Chris Craft sedan cruiser, Sticky Wicket, pulled in and is the only other transient tonight. The boat has been completely rebuilt with new everything including the wiring and is gorgeous. There are a pair of Stidd chairs at the helm. Lat 46.18 Long 82.97

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Posted on 06/22/2005 8:49 PM by Bob Duthie
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Tuesday, 21 June 2005
Day 41 Tuesday June 21 Benjamin Islands
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North ChannelBreakfast was at the English Pantry in Little Current. Next stop was the Benjamin Islands in the North Channel. This is easily the most spectacular place since Cumberland Island off South Carolina. The water is crystal clear. You can see down 10-15 feet. There are high smooth rock cliffs on each side. I took the dingy over and climbed to the top for an incredible southern view of the North Channel (see photo). In a sheltered place high on the rocks I found the cluster of 4 very rare Pink Lady Slipper Orchids. We are anchored with three sailboats on South Benjamin Island in a bay that is sheltered on 3 sides. Only a south wind will make it uncomfortable. The forecast is for west winds becoming northwest so we should be OK. Tomorrow we will head back to civilization at Blind River. Lat 46.08 Long 82.26

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Posted on 06/21/2005 8:50 AM by Bob Duthie
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Monday, 20 June 2005
Day 40 Monday June 20 Little Current on Manitoulin Island
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Collins InletOur original plan was to spend a day at Baie Fine and another day at Birch Lodge. However as we are behind schedule we decided to skip these two points and go directly to Little Current on Manitoulin Island. The only road to this huge island crosses at Little Current on a one lane swing bridge. The bridge only opens on the hour and we made the 11:00AM. This is a really neat town with good shopping and a Laundromat. Mavis did the laundry while I tackled the aft head repair again. I should get my certification in head repair now. Mavis met a couple in the laundry and we had drinks and dinner together. The have a 42 ft Catalina sailboat. They have cruised here for 4 years in the summer and live at Burnt Store in Florida in the winter. This year they will start to head south and are leaving the boat in Cleveland. They are friends of Doc and Eileen, former Kenlake boaters . . .small world. There has not been a cell phone signal for the last two days. However the Anchor Grill here has wifi so I will be sending this by wifi. It is the first time I have seen wifi since Clayton NY. The owner of the Anchor Grill is a boater and caters to the Michigan and Wisconsin boaters that fill the harbor in the summer. Today's photo was taken yesterday as we cruised Collins Inlet which is a natural fiord with high cliffs on both sides of a narrow channel. Lat 45.8 Long 81.93

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Posted on 06/20/2005 9:03 PM by Bob Duthie
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Sunday, 19 June 2005
Day 39 Sunday June 19 Killarney
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George Islander MarinaWe left the Bustards around 8:00 and followed the Coast Guard's Cove Isle out. It headed up toward the French River and we kept going toward Killarney. At Killarney we tied up to the George Islander Marina owned by the wife of an old college classmate (see photo). We were the first boat of the season. The season there is just 6 weeks long. People can earn their year's income in 6 weeks. The marina was on the other side of the channel so we rowed across to town. The main attraction is Herbert's Fish & Chips. The fishing boats come in, the fish is cleaned on the dock, and sold out of an old bus on the property. It was a mob scene until about 8:00PM. I wanted to see the Killarney Mountain Lodge and we ate dinner there. In the afternoon the Cove Island came in and docked at Herbert's which is the public dock.

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Posted on 06/19/2005 9:02 PM by Bob Duthie
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Friday, 17 June 2005
Day 37 Friday June 17 Regatta Point on Franklin Island
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kayakersAnd another grey rainy day but not as much rain as yesterday. It was a 24 mile cruise through the rocks to Regatta Point on Franklin Island. It is a Provincial Park north of Parry Sound. There was a sail boat in the bay when we got here. We had a get together with Val and Flora. He spent 30 years with Bell Canada. Born in Switzerland he went to school in Germany during the second world war and emigrated to Canada in 1952. Having experienced Communism in Europe he is very pro American and doesn't mind telling us. We had a very interesting conversation and polished off the rest of the red wine. During the afternoon a college group came in on very fancy 25 ft kayaks. They are on a four day cruise. I think the kayak has pretty well replaced the canoe here. They set up camp on the rocks. At dusk 2 small cruisers arrived. They must have been here before and because the knew what they were doing and tied up to the rocks around the bay. The cell phone service is very poor here so this entry in the blog will be delayed. (Message sent while underway off Byng Inlet). Lat 45.38 Long 80.33

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Posted on 06/17/2005 10:28 AM by Bob Duthie
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Thursday, 16 June 2005
Day 36 Thursday June 16 Cognashene
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CognasheneAnother grey, rainy day. We were underway at 9:45AM and headed for Rob's cottage at Cognashene. Like many people here Rob has been coming up to Georgian Bay since he was born. They have a beautiful 1930's cottage that has been added onto several times. We had lunch, then did a temporary repair on the fly bridge windshield which broke in half in a storm Tuesday evening. Cruising here is exciting with narrow channels and rocks everywhere. The channels are well marked but you have to be constantly checking the route and making sure you don't miss a buoy. It was a 3 hour cruise to Henry's (world famous) Fish Restaurant at San Souci where we docked for the night. We were the only boat on docks that can handle 50 boats and planes. We had the fish and chips for dinner that were excellent. Some local cottagers from Indianapolis then joined us and we learned a lot about the area. The Toronto area TV stations have repeaters up here so we are able to get at least one watch able channel with the rabbit ears. Note that we are now at 45 degrees north, half way to the North Pole. Lat 45.17 Long 80.14

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Posted on 06/16/2005 9:13 PM by Bob Duthie
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Wednesday, 15 June 2005
Day 35 Wednesday June 15 Penetang continued
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float plane

Diesel man, Ron, came at 8:30AM. He removed the injectors and drove to Barrie to have them tested. One needed a new nozzle and all got new springs. It is 1,500 hours since they were last checked so it was time. I went to the Midland Rotary Club for lunch. The speaker was like an old time medicine man that had a cure for just about anything using HMS-90 which is made from milk. He answered his own question as to why the big drug companies didn't sell this miracle drug. The drug companies only would have bought it so it would never get to the market. It was just like the big oil companies that bought the rights to the carburetor that burned water. After the meeting a member approached me and within a few minutes it turned out that his mother and mine were great friends and that he knew an old girl friend of mine. We are going to cruise to his cottage for lunch tomorrow as it is on the way to our next stop. It rained just about all day today. We had a little excitement when a float plane landed at the marina at 6:45pm. It had flown in from fishing in Hudson's Bay. It was headed for Toronto but because of the lowering ceiling the pilot decided to land on the bay instead of going on. He and his young son will leave in the morning.

 
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Posted on 06/15/2005 9:10 PM by Bob Duthie
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Tuesday, 14 June 2005
Day 34 Tuesday June 14 Penetang
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marine railway car at Big ShuteWe had a great steak dinner last night with Karen and Bob and talked about the boating business until late. This morning Mavis went off to do laundry and I stayed on the boat getting a variety of small jobs completed. The diesel man is not coming until Wednesday morning. I spent several hours with Dennis who has a beautiful wood Europa style 46ft trawler 'Christine Marie'. He is having new artificial teak decks installed and needs to hang around to check on the job as it progresses. Dennis wants to start the Loop next year and had many questions. He also had many suggestions as to our route. Depending on when the diesel man finishes we may go further tomorrow to Henry's Fish Camp on Frying Pan Island. There is a dock there for overnight transients. In the afternoon we launched the dingy and motored over to the town dock, toured the local museum, and had milkshakes at the World Famous Dock Lunch (established 1957). I suspect the name has been the same since it opened. Since I didn't take any photos today the photo shows the marine railway car at Big Shute.

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Posted on 06/14/2005 4:21 PM by Bob Duthie
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Monday, 13 June 2005
Day 33 Monday June 13 Beacon Bay Marina at Penetang
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Beacon Bay Marina at PenetangThe forecast called for lots of rain today. It held off until we were moored in Beacon Bay Marina at Penetang. The mast went back up at the last lock at Port Severn. It was quite a sight to be back with rocks all around and some really narrow channels between them. We got to the marina at 11:30am and refueled for the first time since Brewerton getting 404 liters at $0.929 Canadian per liter. There are 3.8 liters per US Gallon and with exchange at 0.78 it works out to106 gallons at $2.02 per gallon. Karen and Bob, the owners of the marina, have just completed the Great Loop and we got to know them at the last two rendezvous. We are having dinner with them tonight. Karen loaned us her car for grocery shopping and to visit Canadian Tire (one of my favorite stores). We will stay here tomorrow and change fuel filters and check the injection pump before heading to the wilderness of Georgian Bay and the North Channel. Lat 44.77 Long 79.95

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Posted on 06/13/2005 8:34 PM by Bob Duthie
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Sunday, 12 June 2005
Day 32 Sunday June 12 Lake Couchiching
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marine railway at Big Chute

It was foggy when we left the Orillia harbor but it cleared once we were out of Lake Couchiching. The rest of the route took us along the Severn River which winds through narrow granite canyons and lots of cottage country. There are shacks, trailers, and mansions sometimes all mixed together. At Big Chute there is a marine railway (see photo). It was updated in 1979 by building a fancy new device that you float onto. The boat is held from tipping over by slings but rests on the keel. The car rises out of the water over a hump and then down a steep hill. There are two sets of tracks that follow different profiles. One set of tracks is followed by the front of the car and the other tracks are for the rear of the car. In that way the boats remain level and don?t slide off the car. It is all over in about 10 minutes. We tied up at the bottom for the night. Just one more lock and we are done with canals until Chicago. Lat 44.88 Long 79.68

 
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Posted on 06/12/2005 8:02 PM by Bob Duthie
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Saturday, 11 June 2005
Day 31 Saturday June 11 "It will go or blow"
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Lake SimcoeI left the marina at 7:15 to drop the car off at Budget in Orillia. Ted picked me up at 8:00 and drove to the marina at Bolsover. We had breakfast at Twigs and by noon Ted had reinstalled the transmission. As he put it "It will go or blow". We started up the engine and it worked. What a relief! We got a pump-out, put the dingy back on the deck and left for Orillia at 2:00. There are five locks before Lake Simcoe. At the third lock we had to wait as the bar that opens and closes one gate had broken loose. The lockmaster was crouched under the walkway sitting on the gate fixing it. It was soon fixed and we went through. Lake Simcoe was very smoggy (see photo) but calm and the thunderstorms held off until we got to Orillia where we had a dandy storm with lots of rain to wash off the dust that had accumulated over 12 days at Bolsover. When the rain ended Ted and Ethel showed up with a bottle of wine to celebrate the successful repair.

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Posted on 06/11/2005 10:11 PM by Bob Duthie
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Friday, 10 June 2005
Day 30 Friday June 10 transmission parts arrived
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1970 wooden GrevetteToday we had some good luck. The transmission parts arrived yesterday and were reassembled today. Ted picked up the unit and will install it tomorrow. I will return the rental car in Orillia and he will drive me back to the boat. If all goes well we should make it to Orillia by boat Saturday afternoon. This morning we drove to Newmarket for lunch with a motorcycle friend of our son Andrew. His mother-in-law also joined us and it turned out that she went to the same high school in Toronto that I did. Then we continued on to the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. The McMichaels donated their house, a beautiful valley, and their art collection in 1965 to the province. It has been expanded a great deal since then and is a very fine gallery. On the way back we visited a Canadian Costco and bought some books and DVDs for the trip. Tonight Twigs cooked pizza and wished us well assuming we leave tomorrow. The picture is Don's wooden Grevette. It was build custom in Gravenhurst around 1970. He has it restored every 5 years.

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Posted on 06/10/2005 8:16 PM by Bob Duthie
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Thursday, 9 June 2005
Day 29 Thursday June 9 Kirkfield
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16 ft cuddy cabin cruiser built from a plan in 1958 Mechanics Illustrated magazineAfter breakfast at Twig's, another docker, Al, was loading up his 16 ft cuddy cabin cruiser he built from a plan in a 1958 Mechanics Illustrated magazine. Al took 14 years to complete the boat. A friend hand carved the wooden steering wheel. When the friend died a couple of years ago the wheel was at the funeral and now has a memorial plaque on it. The boat has a galley with fridge and running water as well as a head. (see photo). At 11:30 we left in Don's Grevette wooden runabout for Kirkfield. It was fun to be on the water doing 50 mph covering in minutes the same stretch in which we spent 3 hours 1.5 weeks ago. The milk shakes and hamburgers at Lock's Nest Restaurant were really good. This afternoon it looked like we would get a thunderstorm but it petered out with only a sprinkling. I am hoping for a good rain that will wash the dust from the road off the boat.

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Posted on 06/09/2005 6:03 PM by Bob Duthie
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Wednesday, 8 June 2005
Day 28 Wednesday June 8 Bolsover continued
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Beautiful scenery in BolsoverThis was a slow day with no photos taken. However, since so far I have taken over 700, I'll use one from a few days ago that shows what a beautiful spot we are stranded in. We met Don's son, Steve, who is a croupier at the Niagara Falls casino. We learned quite a lot about the gambling business from Steve. His only incident so far was finding a couple of counterfeit $100 bills mixed in with several legitimate $100s from a customer. The police investigated but found no evidence that the customer was a counterfeiter. Lunch was in Beavertown at the Farmer's Kitchen. It was very unusual with over 120 bins of beans, sugar, spices, etc all along one wall. They also sell baked goods and serve breakfast and sandwiches. Tomorrow's big event is a trip in Don's classic Greavette runabout to Kirkfield for old fashioned milkshakes.

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Posted on 06/08/2005 9:52 PM by Bob Duthie
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Tuesday, 7 June 2005
Day 27 Tuesday June 7 Transmission update
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mangled gearsIt has now been one week since the transmission seized up at Kirkfield. I was able to visit the rebuilder in Orillia today and had a look at the mangled gears. Various teeth were broken off (see photo just left of the finger) and jammed the bevel gears, fortunately for us in forward. The parts should be here by Friday which means we could be underway by next Tuesday. It takes a day to reassemble the unit and a day to install it in the boat. The Orillia Rotary Club was honoring high school students they had helped today. Each student gave a little talk on how the club had helped them in choosing a career. On the way back to Bolsover we toured Lagoon City on Lake Simcoe It has dug canals like Florida behind every house and condominium and is very well done. It is large and caters to large boats. I measured 2.1 miles of canal are required to get from one lot to Lake Simcoe.

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Posted on 06/07/2005 7:23 PM by Bob Duthie
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Monday, 6 June 2005
Day 26 Monday June 6 Killing time in Bolsover
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Mariposa MarketBreakfast was the apple fritters we bought at the Mariposa Market.(see photo) They are far better than the ones you get these days at Tim Horton's. Then I tackled the rebuilding of the aft head. That is a horrible job with nothing easy to get at and tight spaces. There was one bolt that took 2 hours to finally get back in place. However, the head flushes beautifully again so I guess it was worth it. We have a loon that hangs around in the bay. The first one we have really got a good look at. He has not made any calls yet so must be single. After recovering from the head project we went to Beaverton for grocery shopping and a haircut. The barber shop had moved and was closed Monday and Tuesday. The Family Hair Center said it was open but it had closed at 1:00PM. Tomorrow there is a Rotary Club meeting in Orillia and hopefully I can get a hair cut before the meeting. There was no word on the transmission today.

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Posted on 06/06/2005 10:09 PM by Bob Duthie
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Sunday, 5 June 2005
Day 25 Sunday June 5 Another day Bolsover
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Breakfast at TwigsBreakfast was at Twig's with Gordy and Sue from the Loonasea. The pancake is superb (see photo) but I had to supply our own maple syrup. (Dave used to offer real maple syrup for an extra charge but only 2 people in a year asked for it.) Our syrup was a gift from Gordon Shaw whose cousin has a sugar bush. Dave at Twig's was in fine form again this morning and did his health inspector act. We did laundry at noon in Orillia and walked around. Lunch was at the Mariposa Market which is a fabulous bakery, deli, and candy store. We picked up a repair kit for the aft head at Beacon Bay Marina in Penetang and enjoyed a tour with the fellow loopers that own that marina. Another looper that was there knows the transmission rebuilder in Orillia and assured us we were going to get first class treatment. Back in Orillia Loonasea found that the vibration had gone and had no need for a diver. We had supper at a pizza place with Gordy and Sue and drove back to Bolsover.

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Posted on 06/05/2005 7:41 PM by Bob Duthie
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Saturday, 4 June 2005
Day 24 Saturday June 4 Dinner in Beaverton
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45 foot LoonaseaThis has been a slow day until around 4:00PM when the 45 foot Loonasea arrived. Loonasea is also doing the Great Loop but hit an underwater object near here and limped into Port of Call Marina. Once again Ted was available to assist. They called a diver from Peterborough to come and check the props but he preferred to go to Orillia. They will go there tomorrow at slow speed. We all went to dinner in Beaverton with Don and Phyllis (the local cottagers). The specialty at Trillium is liver and onions. The photo shows Loonasea heading out on Sunday with a lilac bush in the foreground. The lilacs are in full bloom and are spectacular.

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Posted on 06/04/2005 7:37 PM by Bob Duthie
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Friday, 3 June 2005
Day 23 Friday June 3 Drive to Gravenhurst
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Wenonah IIToday we were picked up by an old Queen's University friend, Dr. Gordon C. Shaw, who has chosen in his retirement to be President of the Muskoka Steamship and Historical Society. This is a major attraction and economic development engine in the area with a museum, two restored steam powered ships and one brand new replica. Gordon helped raise several million $ to build the new ship. A hotel, restaurants, shops and condominiums are now being built next to the docks. We drove to Gravenhurst and boarded the replica ship the Wenonah II. The ship headed north up Lake Muskoka. Soon we were called to the dining room for a beautifully served lunch complete with a bottle of Pelee Island Merlot. As we were with Gordon we were treated like royalty and got to see every part of the ship including the Caterpillar engines and generators. Each CAT engine burns just 3 gallons per hour. Returning to the dock we toured the Segwun built in 1887 which I used to see on the lakes when I was on canoe trips at Camp Pine Crest in the '50s. The Segwun burns coal and was being readied for the summer season which starts next week. The ships are all available for private parties and conferences. On our return we found out that the decision has been made to rebuild the transmission. It will take at least a week to get the parts, reassemble the unit and re-install it in the Katy Leigh. So much for our itinerary; an update will be issued when we are more certain of our departure date.

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Posted on 06/03/2005 8:37 PM by Bob Duthie
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Friday, 3 June 2005
Day 23 Friday June 3 Extra Photo
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A view of the dining room on the Wenonah II

Dining room on the Wenonah II

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Posted on 06/03/2005 8:40 PM by Bob Duthie
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Thursday, 2 June 2005
Day 22 Thursday June 2 Bolsover continued
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Chicken story at Twigs The shop in Orillia took the transmission apart today and found a lot of damage. It will take them until tomorrow to come up with a repair estimate. Then we have to decide whether to rebuild it or buy a new one. How long this will take we don't know but it looks like we will be here in Bolsover for a while. My sister and a friend came to visit today and we went to Twigs for lunch. Everyone had the egg salad sandwich which is really good. The secret Dave said was the use of fresh eggs. He then went on to tell us all about how he grows the chickens and his one time pet chicken 'I-lean' which only had one leg. Much of the story he acted out (see photo). In the afternoon a local resident, Don, came by. He has one of the last Gravette mahogany inboard/outboard runabouts built. He bought it originally in 1974 and had it restored a couple of years ago. The boat is in beautiful shape.

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Posted on 06/02/2005 7:23 PM by Bob Duthie
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Wednesday, 1 June 2005
Day 21 Wednesday June 1 Bolsover
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Transmission repairBreakfast was at Twigs, a small restaurant beside the marina. Dave, the owner, spent a lot of time to tell me about the new water regulations that became effective today. He has to spend $3,000 per year on water testing. This is a result of a bad water situation in one Ontario town where the water utility was cheating on tests. Clearly the province is over-reacting. In spite of this Dave does serve a good breakfast. Ted came at 9:00AM to remove the transmission. He is the kind of mechanic that plans every move first. Consequently it went well and the transmission was ready to be hauled by 11:30AM lunch time. Two stands were set up on either side of the engine room with a steel shaft resting on their tops. A chain haul was fastened around the transmission and it was hoisted up on to a custom built for the job plywood platform. The platform was slide over to the door and then two men hauled it through the door and down the deck to the gap in the hand rail. Ted drove it to the re-builder in Orillia. Tomorrow we will learn about how long it will take to fix. Putting it back will be much easier as all the equipment is now in place.

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Posted on 06/01/2005 9:31 PM by Bob Duthie
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