Spring has brought high waters to the Ottawa Valley, among other areas. Today I want to document some of that. This first shot dates to April 16th, along the Ottawa River. I had come down here to photograph from the Portage Bridge downstream, something I do a couple of times a month for a post I'll have in the fall. Coming back, I descended down the parkland area called Richmond Landing towards the river's edge. Ice can still be seen in the background, and the water was high enough that the path below this point was under water. Parliament Hill and the Supreme Court can be seen at right, while landmarks like the Alexandra Bridge, Nepean Point, and the National Gallery are in the background.
I returned to the area a week ago today. The river had hit its high point before that weekend. I first went up to the Portage Bridge to photograph from both directions. This view looks upstream towards the Chaudiere Bridge. Some days earlier the Chaudiere Bridge had been officially closed down for the duration of the high water, as it's lower to the water than the Portage- there was probably no more than six feet of space between the bottom of the bridge and the raging waters. I have never seen this river this high. The Chaudiere Falls, upstream from the bridge, would be quite different right now, but the viewing platform would definitely be off limits at present. I came back the following day to film a video, which you can see right here at this link.
From there I returned to Richmond Landing. This is a monument to the Royal Canadian Navy, largely undisturbed by the river when it was at its height, though the river had intruded into the shallow bowl between sections, as seen in the line of driftwood on the grass.
A channel of the river lies between here and the main shoreline. The water is above its normal limit here, as seen with where the trees are. And over on the other side, the bike path that normally leads to Parliament Hill comes to an end, submerged in water. That is the case all the way to Parliament Hill, from what I've seen from above.
Compare this take to my first shot. The bike path you could see in that first one curling around the point is under water. The floating dock in the shot is tethered to the shoreline.
I headed up to the Supreme Court, where this view is from an outlook behind the building, looking towards the Parliament Buildings. Normally you would be able to see the bike path down below, but not right now.
Coming to the other side of Parliament Hill and descending the Ottawa Locks to where the Rideau Canal meets the Ottawa River, I photographed this perspective of the river. The bike path comes to an end down there- a floating dock had been taken out of the water, blocking the rest of the path, which was submerged beyond there.
This really brings home how high the water is- those light posts should be on dry ground.
I crossed over to the east side of the Ottawa Locks, and took this perspective, with people sitting on top of the structure on the west side.
A bike path leads up from here towards Nepean Point and Major's Hill Park, but at the moment the water is between the two stretches of the path, and you have to go up into the woods at right to get around it, assuming you're ignoring the 'do not cross' signs. Just days earlier, there was enough water here to strand this long submerged tree trunk on the shoreline.