Copyright 2014 Allan Stokell
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My home port is Toronto so I always first approach the Murray from the west end at
Presqu'ile Bay. I usually take two days to sail down the lake with an overnight in
Cobourg. That makes for a long first day, but Cobourg marina is worth it. If you
are leaving Cobourg in the morning it is quite possible to make Trenton that day
otherwise there is a simple but friendly marina in Gosport near the entrance to the
canal. Watch out -
The whole deal about the Murray Canal and environs is that you must keep to the buoys. Power boaters with lots of local knowledge will lead you to believe there are shortcuts and you may be tempted to take them when you see the wide sweep of buoys approaching the canal. When transiting from west to east the buoys are reversed. There is a $5 fee to transit canal paid at the westerly bridge
While in Presqu'ile Bay be aware of the weeds that may foul your prop. Don't get stuck in the Murray without motive power as the sides of the canal are rough gravel or cement. Once through the canal if you are heading to Trenton, keep to the buoyed route on the south side of the Bay of Quinte. Do not take the small craft route to the northeast as it is too shallow for most sailboats. Instead take the channel that heads north just east of Indian Island across to Trenton. Check with the canal web site for opening times during the season or your early start might be foiled.
The municipal marina in Trenton is called Fraser Park Marina. It is right by the
bridge at the start of the Trent/Severn canal.
The wake from other boats makes it a bit choppy but the warm welcome from staff
and the location of the marina right downtown within walking distance of restaurants,
food stores and the LBCO make up for it.
5 Bay Street West,
This marina does not monitor
channel 68 as it is mostly a restaurant
The canal runs from the Bay of Quinte in the east to Presqu'ile Bay in the west on Lake Ontario. It is approximately 8 kilometres long. The canal shortens the trip for boats wishing to access Lake Ontario from the central and western Bay of Quinte by avoiding having to go around the outside (south side) of Prince Edward County.
Although the British government of Upper Canada had proposed the canal earlier and land was surveyed for it, it was felt the Welland Canal was higher priority. Construction was begun in 1882 and because of problems with the canal silting in, it was not completed until 1889. The canal is crossed by two swing bridges (Ontario Highway 33 and County Rd 64), and an unused railway bridge still exists but is kept permanently open.
Fraser Park Marina (Trenton)
Latitude: 44° 6' 7"
Marina monitors channel 68