North Channel Cruising

It’s been a while since I’ve updated everyone on what we have been up too. Looking at the calander we have been in Canada for over two weeks. We have found the people to be nice and helpful. We have been in Ontario in the towns of Thessalon, Blind River, Gore Bay, Little Current, and Killarney. We are now backtracking our way toward Sault St. Marie, pronounced Soo Saint Marie.

We have traveled through many channels with names like Whalesback, Claperton,  McBean, and Little Detroit. We’ve seen many beautiful islands and hideaways. We don’t anchor out. We say it’s because of the dog, but we are working on remadies for that, not getting rid of the dog, but a way to lift her off the boat and into the dingy.

Toots the dog has had a tough time. If we get into any waves or wind she is shaking badly. Really vibrating. I’ve even held her on my lap to try to calm her. A 60 pound dog on your lap is always a thrill. She has really been quite good throughout the trip with only a couple of bad times. She likes all the attention she gets in each port. Toots and I have been called look a likes more than once. We both tend to look a little dissheveled and windblown. My beard and hers both have quite a bit of grey. But from their I don’t see the similarity.

Some of the top memories so far are; otters, eagles, and loons. Here’s one; What do they call Canadian Geese in Canada? ——– Geese.

The Channel that has given me the most stress; Claperton Channel on the south side of Clapperton Island. It is wide open but the channel is narrow and shallow. Not shallow that you are in danger of bottoming out in the channel. But you can see the bottom through the whole thing and there are rocks down there the size of Volkswagons.

Blind River has the best sunsets. Just because the view is unobstructed from the marina.

Killarney has best Fish and Chips.

Gore Bay is the prettiest. Reminds me of Mackinac Island without the fort. It even has fudge. We ran into a boat from our same marina at home in Gore Bay.

Baie Fine is a pretty ride up the bay and back. That’s where we saw the eagles. Three for sure and possibly another, it was a long way away.

Out of Little Current is broadcast everyday during July and August is the Cruiser’s net. At 9:00AM each morning Roy Eaton goes on channel 71 on the VHF radio and tells the weather, news, and takes calls from the cruisers in the North Channel. He’s had up to 80 calls of boats reporting there positions during the show. It’s old time radio.

Many of the people traveling the North Channel have been coming here for years. We’ve run into many that started coming here with their parents in the 60’s. I remember my brother Mike traveling to the North Channel in the early 80’s. The old timers have seen many changes. The big problem now is the drop in water levels, caused by global warming, evaporation, and the lack of flow restrictions through the St. Clair River. This is actually draining the great lakes.


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