Returning to Winterlude today, and to the Rideau Canal at Dow's Lake. The Dragon Boat Festival has been happening in Ottawa for years each summer at Mooney's Bay, south of this location. Some years ago, the festival organizers inaugurated a winter edition as part of Winterlude, the first time that ice dragon boat racing was held in North America. It's been part of Winterlude ever since. It seems harder to do than the summer version. Teams head down a 200 metre course on the ice, with the boats resting on an apparatus outfitted with blades to skate across the ice. The rowers aren't using oars, but sticks with spikes to drive into the ice and propel themselves forward. This all takes place on the Friday and Saturday of the second week of Winterlude, with many teams competing. I came down on the Saturday morning, a bitterly cold day, and photographed a couple of the heats. Here we have teams just about ready to go. The spectators were lined down the ice, almost all of them on the same side of the ice I was on.
And the call was made: the race got started, boats starting to glide down the ice.
I turned to photograph behind me. The Arboretum stands on the shore of the lake.
While waiting for the next heat to come back down the ice, I took some perspective shots.
And so it was that the next race was underway, coming back. I have more of this over the next couple of days.