Muskoka boating will be different this coming summer especially if you utilize the locks on a regular basis.
For at least over half a century, the small locks in Port Carling have been available for use 24 hours a day, 7 days a week throughout the entire boating season. Last summer, the small locks remained closed for the duration of the summer and were only opened (coincidentally) the same day the large locks became unavailable due to the prior scheduled `dry dock/ hull survey` of the Lady Muskoka.
Many Muskoka boaters may be unaware of the recent District of Muskoka announcement – the District will not be operating the small locks (even though repaired) 24 hours a day but instead have extended the hours of operation on the large locks till Midnight when both locks will close for the evenings.
The district has reported three main factors for this decision.
- Cost Savings
- Damages to the small locks `after hours`
- Lack of use after hours - based on an `unofficial survey`.
As of today, I have asked the district and township for specific details and reports that would have justified making this decision. Regardless, I know the locks being closed at 11 pm has had significant impact on my travels between lakes and I believe I am not alone.
If you realize this or not - this is an election year and I am sure that `public opinion` will go a long way in potentially getting this decision reversed.
Please stay tuned for further updates.