Sunday, June 19, 2016

6/19 87 degrees to see the workings of the Peterborough Lift Lock

The sun was blazing today here in Peterborough.  The high was 87 degrees!!!   John celebrated Fathers' Day with calls/skypes from Texas, Maryland, and Virginia.  The girls are fortunate to have such a good dad.

We walked to the Cathedral here in Peterborough for Mass.  Even though it was early, we were warm when we got there.  After Mass, we walked to the Peterborough Lift Lock.  As in other places along this voyage, I am always impressed with the art that you see along the way.  Here at the Bell Telephone Building, doors with reliefs of a telephone, the first people, maple leafs and the lift lock were very detailed.
Just down the street on the side of a building was a framed flower picture.  Look beside it and see the window in the building for perspective. 
At the Lift Lock and the Visitors Center, we learned a lot about how all the locks of the Trent Severn Waterway were built, and in particular how the Peterborough Lift Lock works.  We will go through it on Tuesday and wanted to see it before we go in it.  It is an amazing feat of engineering that was built in 1904 and runs the same way today.  There are two pans that are 140 feet long.  They are both filled with water.  After the boats are secured to the sides of the pans, the process begins by adding water to the upper pan.  A gateway below is released.  The extra water goes across the gateway and the plunger on the upper side goes down.  The water raises the plunger on the lower side.  No fancy bells and whistles, just pure physics.  The building was also created with all poured concrete, one foot at a time.  The idea of reinforced concrete had not come into widespread use yet.
Left pan down and right pan up

Look how high up the right pan is!!
Looking down on one of the pans at the bottom.
Because the water is contained in the pans, the back wall and the bottom of the lock are not underwater. 
Back wall of the Lift Lock
The plungers are huge.  The locks make very little noise and the lifts move VERY quickly.  The boats don't move around because the water movement is in the plungers.  We watched some boaters going through and everyone on board was very relaxed and not having to work to fend off the lock wall. 
Huge plungers under the lift lock
We will stay another day here in Peterborough to attend the Canoe Museum and then on to the Lift Lock on Tuesday.  I can't wait to give it a try.  Look for pictures from inside the Lift Lock.

Lat 44 degrees 17.78 North
Long 78 degrees 19.09 West

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