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As I said in another topic, I am considering a move to Lake Ontario. It would seem to me that Ontario, being smaller, would also be smoother. I know on Mich we often have to battle a steep chop. With 300 miles of fetch out of the NE, and a relatively shallow bottom, we can get some very steep 8 footers, which are tough to beat into. I have heard the sailing on Mich is comparable to the Gulf Stream.

Also, can one get from Ontario to New York City harbor for a shot down to Bermuda? And another also, can one get to the great circle - down thru Tenn. and to Mobile, AL?

Moving to L Ontario would give me the opportunity to live minutes from my boat ( now it is 70 minutes away).
 

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Living close to the boat would be a plus. It''s the best way to go. Living far away sucks.

Sorry for the news but having lived near Ontario I can tell you the eastern shore can be quite wild. I have seen 25 ft breakers crash ashore in heavy weather. The shallow depth kicks up some real weather from time to time. Ontario is every bit the danger as Michigan. The only lake that really has much of a difference is Superior -it''s very dangerous and the cold water deadly. Clearly the most serious of the great lakes. The Great Lakes deserve all the respect of a great ocean - even the smaller ones.

From Ontario you can get to Albany via the NYS Barge Canal entering at Oswego or Buffalo. You''ll need to step the mast to get there (21 ft clearence) howvever there can be assitance at both ends as it is done quite a bit. Very pretty trip! The great circle can be accessed via Chicago so you can''t really get there without going back though the other lakes.
 

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Ahoy from Ontario!

I second that notion!!!!!! I have sailed the great Lakes and spent months on the caribbean and gues what?????
Ask me where I encountered the worst weather.....................answer..Lake Ontario at least so far!
Remember so can encounter a terrible storm anywhere. I'm sure when I head to Antigua next time I see worse sea!!!!!
:D Shiver me timbers!!!
Allan
 

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Irwin:

Lake Ontario is known for it's steep chop when the wind picks up but I expect it's more noticeable in the east end given the prevailng winds. I believe Lake Ontario is of a somewhat comparable depth to Lake Michigan.
 

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Have you planned your route?

Through Erie and the Welland or Georgian Bay and the Trent?
 

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Erie Canal to Erie

I'm planning on a transit to Georgian Bay and wondering if exiting at Oswego, puting the mast up and doing the Welland Canal would be better than sticking with the Eire Canal to Buffalo?

John
 

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Having done the Welland Canal in a sailboat, I will chime in.
Remember, as a pleasure craft, you are low man on the totem pole on when you get to be locked through, the freighters take priority.
We arrived at the Port Colborne (top of the canal) at 7:00 in the morning and called to let them know we would like to come through. We were told to go have a loooooooooong breakfast because there were several freighters due in. He told us it would be about 1:00 pm before we would likely start. Turned out to be about 3:15 before we started. But, because the freighters were still in the lock system, we had to keep waiting for them to clear the locks. We finally came out the bottom end at 1:30 in the morning!
Another thing to remember is, if you are heading up the lock system (from Ontario to Erie) you are required to have 3 persons on board.
 

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Welland Canal

Thanks Dave,

How did you find the actual locking conditions? Did you use fender boards? I 'm going to be doing it in a 6,500lb 30' cat with a 13'-6" beam and also wondering what your boat weighs.

Cheers,

John
 

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John-

What catamaran do you have?
Thanks Dave,

How did you find the actual locking conditions? Did you use fender boards? I 'm going to be doing it in a 6,500lb 30' cat with a 13'-6" beam and also wondering what your boat weighs.

Cheers,

John
 

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I've made the Welland trip from Ontario to Erie for the past 6 years to deliver a Hunter 38.6, believe me the trip on th Erie canal would be an easier trip. It's for one FREE the welland is now $200 one way CDN or US there is no exchange rate, also you can be caught in the Canal any where from 4.5 hrs to 30 hrs making the trip thru. Remember the freighters have preferance over pleasure craft.
 

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Good point and I appreciate the input. Have you or anyone else done the full Eire Canal? The thought of motoring the entire distance is unappealing and I did live in Welland and have relatives there. Weather forecast would also be a big factor.

John
 

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Thanks Dave,

How did you find the actual locking conditions? Did you use fender boards? I 'm going to be doing it in a 6,500lb 30' cat with a 13'-6" beam and also wondering what your boat weighs.

Cheers,

John
The locks are huge so be prepared for a fun ride. First big lock we went through, we were heading down and all of a sudden this big identation in the wall appears with a huge discharge tube sticking up. Just as we go passed it, it spewed out a ton of cold water, right on top of my wife sitting on the foredeck. If looks could kill.....:eek:
I didn't use fender boards but I would highly recommend them.
My boat displaces 10600 pounds.

Dave
 

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Did 10 years on Lake Ontario and 20 in South FL. Don't know Lake Michigan. Always thought it to be shallow vs. Ontario.
On Ontario, I recall a major storm every 3 or 4 years and coming back from the St Lawrence in brisk westerlies was a problem.
Never had anything close to crossing the Gulf Stream in a norther.
Fitz
 
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