Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Espanola to the Soo

It was a half day’s ride from Espanola to Sault Saint Marie. My first impression was that Sault Saint Marie (pronounced Soo) was as a pleasant city, not only to see, but to ride through, in and about. Even construction was tamed and all flowed easily. We checked in at our hotel and relieved ourselves of baggage.

Andy and I took a stroll along the River Walk. This is a revitalization and reclamation of the water front along the Saint Marie River, much like many cities today are doing. We enjoyed the sculptures, and historical markers. We made our way to the locks, which were quiet at the time we arrived. The historical sign told of their early beginnings and also how today all ships have free passage. I think it was a shot to the American side, which we know has plenty of fees to pass through any lock in the country. However, we also know that while the ship does not pay the fee, there are plenty of people who are through taxation.

While the locks play an important part in moving goods up and down the river, as long as the ice is out, the hydro-plant is providing another service; power. The rapids here show how man tames nature and also harnesses nature. This is never more evident that on the Soo. The hydro-plant here is unusual in that the turbines are vertical, not horizontal. From the historical marker here, we learn this is more typical of European design than what is found in North America.

At the end of the River Walk we found the Casino. Now parched and hungry as I had not had lunch, we had a snack and beverage inside. We tried our luck at the slots for a short bit, and then made our way back to the hotel. We ended our evening at a fine Italian restaurant, relaxed a bit in the evening. The weather is forecasted to take a turn for the worst. We may head north along Superior if not too bad, but I fear the remainder of our trip may be in rain gear.


Willie aka NomadWillie said...

It looks like you are having a great time. I will have to get MeAsWe a Passport-Card and go to Niagara on the Canadian side. Stay safe.


Baron's Life said...

Sault Saint Marie...OH la la, the memories come back ma tres chere amie... I live on the west coast now, but grew up in Montreal, which is only about 1 1/2 drive up into Ontario... we used to go camping and day picnicking at Soo Ste- Marie almost every weekend with the family...trhanks for the memoeireis PAT... GOd BLess

Bob said...

Great photos! The Canadian Soo seems so much cleaner than the American Soo! I really liked the riverfront walkway, and the statues.