Ontario Travel Guides

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Quebec Canals

Carillon Canal

The Carillon Canal, opened in 1833, bypasses the rapids of the Ottawa River, especially those at Long Sault. Originally built for military purposes, the canal was used for commerce from the outset. The first canal system consisted of the Grenville Canal, the Chute-ĀEBlondeau Canal and the Carillon Canal. Altogether there were 11 locks and the draught was less than 2 m. The system was replaced to reflect the needs of its travellers. Today, the canal is used almost exclusively for pleasure boating. Its modern system includes only one lock which raises and lowers boats 20 m. in a single operation. Its 200 tonne guillotine gate makes it unique in North America. Close to the actual Carillon Canal are remains of the first and second canals, the superintendents and toll collectors houses and the Carillon barracks which house the Argenteuil Regional Museum.

Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue Canal

Located in the West island of Montreal, the canal links Lake Saint-Louis and the Lake des Deux-Montagnes, at the mouth of the Ottawa River. Used for commercial purposes from its opening in 1843, the canal soon became an integral part of the Montreal-Ottawa-Kingston inland shipping route. Heavy commercial traffic made a second lock essential. It was built parallel to the east channel and the work was completed in 1882. Beckerís Dam, which is a channel in the middle of Lac Saint-Louis, was also built, permitting vessels to cross through shallow waters. The old lock continued to be used intermittently until the early 20th century, before being completely filled in 1964. Today, the Sainte-Anne-deBellevue lock is used essentially for pleasure boating.

Lachine Canal

The Lachine Canal is much more than just a route bypassing the rapids of the same name. The Lachine Canalís history stretches over more than 150 years and takes several directions. It comes within the scope of the interdependence between shipping, industrialization and urbanization, which marked Montrťalís development. The canal was the port of entry for a canal network that linked the Atlantic to the heart of the continent. The value of the canal for recreational boating and enhancement of cultural resources was recognized, it reopened to pleasure boating in 2002. Now boaters are able to cruise through the heart of Montreal, with visitor centres in Lachine, Saint Gabriel, Cote-SaintPaul and Atwater Market.

Saint-Ours Canal

Opened in 1849, the Saint-Ours Canal is a continuation of the Chambly Canal, bypassing the final obstacle to navigation between Lake Champlain and the St Lawrence River. Known as the tenth lock of the Richelieu, the Saint-Ours Canal is situated between líÓle Darvard and the shore of St-Ours. It has been indispensable to international trade for over a century. Pleasure boating has replaced the canalís commercial traffic. Visitor may also learn more about Vianney-Legendre fishway ladder a successful environmental engineering project.

Chambly Canal

The Chambly Canal, which opened along the Richelieu River in 1843, played a leading role in the Quebec forest products industry and in shipping these products to the burgeoning United States market. The nine locks allowed the barges to bypass rapids and a difference of more than 24 meters in levels between the Chambly basin and the Upper Richelieu. At the beginning, the barges were tow by horses. Still now, the towpath can by see and visitors are using it to envoy a bike ride or a relaxing walk along the canal. Most of the locks have retained the main architectural features and are still operated by hand. Today the Chambly Canal is an exceptional heritage site.