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Old 22-01-2012, 10:03   #1
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Montreal and Beyond

I am looking for info on the locks at Montreal. I rather we would like to sail from 1000 islands to just passed Montreal, maybe to Quebec City and possibly leave boat there for winter or continue up and out to east coast.
Time-lines and prior passage experiences would be great feedback.
I have read the great circle trip and tried finding more on this but lack good solid knowledge on the lock setup and duration to pass through all.
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Old 22-01-2012, 11:17   #2
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Re: Montreal and Beyound

Seaway System - The Seaway - Our Locks and Channels

You may be able to find all the information on this website.
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Old 22-01-2012, 13:00   #3
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Re: Montreal and Beyound

When passing through, we relied on that website provided by DeepFrz, specifically Seaway System - Recreational Boating as well as Ports - Lake Ontario & St Lawrence. Also coming up to the lock and asking over VHF worked very well

In general it was an awesome experience (if slightly scary) - 246' of water level change.

Lock setup: have lines ready - some provide them, others (smaller ones) don't. We were VERY happy we made some fender boards before starting the trip. Boat hooks are of help too. They are very strict on wearing the PFDs. At least 2 people on board would be handy, though they might jump in to help if needed (Canadian locks, if memory serves right).

When we were passing through, some locks were scheduled, but it worked well for us to hail them over VHF and ask for the time of the next opening. Generally we got through faster than scheduled (just be nice over VHF ).

One word of caution: don't rely too much on their time estimates on waiting before you can pass through. It's very likely it'll be much shorter. Even when the lock keepers tell you "be ready in 1.5 hours", try to be ready at a moment's notice. We would dock at the temporary docks, and just as I would put something on the stove and my other half would start some engine maintenance: "Wind Whisper, can you be here in 3 or 5 min? Otherwise you'll have to wait another 3 hours."... They did it to us in 4 locks.

For cruising St Lawrence and Quebec: if you can get your hands on St Lawrence River and Quebec Waterways (Cruising Guide St. Lawrence River & Quebec Waterways - 2nd Ed.), it's a very good guide. It published in English and French in alternative years. Saguenay River is a must.
Also, if you can get there in time, suggest to stop in Quebec City marina for Quebec National Holiday - amazing entertainment for 2 days right next to your boat!
It's a fun trip!
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Old 22-01-2012, 18:33   #4
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Re: Montreal and Beyound

thanks for the replies, checked out the links great info, still working on anchorages as well
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Old 26-01-2012, 13:25   #5
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Re: Montreal and Beyound

Also read the FAQ page on Welcome to Yacht Pilot Cruising Guides as it pertains to the Down East Circle Route which is the route you are planning.

Their guide for the route has lots of information about the locks and the St. Lawrence River.
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Old 02-03-2012, 21:00   #6
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Re: Montreal and Beyond

I found the Guide to the Down East Circle Route by Capt. Cheryl Barr very helpful, but I sailed most of the route in summer 2011, not just the St. Lawrence River. Lots of details on my website, Captain Murph, regarding boat, preparation, charts & guides used, log entries of the trip, etc. I transited the locks in early June, so not much recreational boat traffic and got thru pretty quickly, except for the last 2 locks going east into Montreal. Even there we only waited a couple hours or so.
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