Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Winterlude 2013 is Coming Soon!


One of the first signs that Ottawa's Winterlude is close by is the opening of the Rideau Canal Skateway.   
 
Rideau Canal Skateway and Mackenzie King Bridge
 
This past Sunday I slapped on my skates and headed out from near the Mackenzie King Bridge.  The Canal was bustling with people.  So much so that there was no room on nearby benches or in the chalets to change your skates.  Thus, I improvised by using my back pack to sit on the ice and do the skate changing.

Rideau Canal Skateway looking toward Laurier Street Bridge


I skated southwards on the Canal towards the Pretoria Bridge.  Ice conditions were far from ideal with ruts and light snow on the top.  This is because this past weekend was the first weekend the entire Canal from Rideau Street to the Hartwell locks was open for skating. It seemed everyone and their grandma was on the Canal getting in their first skate of the year.  

Rideau Canal Skateway near the University of Ottawa (left)

I got down as far as Pretoria Bridge before giving up for the day.  The ice conditions, the number of other skaters and the fact I can't remember the last time I had my skates sharpened were all contributing factors.   I've since remedied the skate sharpening issue and hope to take to the Canal like I did in January 2009.

Winterlude though, I'm even more excited for.  My wife has never really taken part in seeing the Ice Sculptures, the Snowflake Kingdom and much more (including looking for Ice Hogs!). 
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