Monday, April 5, 2021

Melting Snow And Rock Faces

Back on St. Patrick's Day, I went down to the Portage Bridge to photograph the river. On my way I paused to photograph this work site on Lebreton Flats. This is the site of the future main branch of the Ottawa Public Library, a joint project with Library and Archives Canada, which will also have facilities in the new building. The present main branch of the library is a few blocks east of here in the downtown core, and it's a monstrosity from the 70s. I may occasionally document the progress at this site.

This is what the finished product is going to look like.

Close by I photographed this channel of the Ottawa River. There was actually a kayaker in this white water training area. Off in the distance are buildings on the Gatineau shore of the main body of the river.

Coming back, my eyes were drawn to ice on the rock wall here. This is actually part of the larger ridge that Parliament Hill is part of, a limestone ridge that looms high over the Ottawa River, with saddles of lower areas between parts of the ridge- where I was in the first shot is one of those saddles. It's lower here than it is at Parliament Hill, but where I was standing wasn't down at the river's edge either. South of here, the ridge gradually disappears beneath the earth around Dow's Lake, where it is largely hidden by soil and buildings. Ice was still clinging to the rock face, and the sound of meltwater could be heard.

Here's where the sound of melting water was coming from, with water soaking the cliff from above. Drops of water can be seen near the top.

Nearby here, I photographed this pumping station that dates back to the 19th century and remains active. That channel of the Ottawa River in the shot further up? It comes through here.

And then flows under a bridge back into what feels like a natural gorge. I took two more shots of the place.

Close to this spot is the national Firefighters Memorial. There was less snow here than the last time I was here, but this area gets a lot of southern and western exposure.


  1. Oh no the snow is going bye bye !
    Hope you had some fun in the snow. To hot to early for Tucson, it will be a bad summer. Fire warnings already

  2. It looks like the new library/archives will be a beautiful building.

  3. The new building will blend with the landscape around.

  4. ...and I can't wait to see Ottawa's gardens come to life!

  5. The ice on the rock face are like living art. Really like those.

  6. I like the photos of the channel and that rock wall.

  7. Hello,
    I am glad our snow/ice has melted. Pretty series of photos. Cool Firefighter sculpture!
    Take care, have a great day and a happy new week!

  8. Not the kind of day to be falling out of a kayak! We should have more memorials to firefighters.

  9. The Ottawa river looks beautiful and a lovely memorial to the brave selfless firemen.

  10. @parsnip: it still feels cool this morning.

    @Linda: I think so.

    @Italiafinlandia: it will.

    @Tom: it will take time.

    @Gemel: ice on rock does interesting things.

    @Jan: so do I.

    @Eileen: thanks!

    @John: a cold body of water to plunge into.

    @Magiceye: I agree.

  11. A kayak ride would not be my idea of a good idea in that cold water!

  12. Still wintry looking but creative photos ~ like the cliff melting and Firemen sculpture is wonderful ~ Xo

    Living moment by moment,

    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  13. Spring colours will be here soon...

  14. The land always has interesting features. We have to know about it before we destroy it with buildings!

  15. That's going to be one heck of a library.

  16. The statue is a very nice tribute to firemen.

  17. The new Library will be a great improvement ..I like to see $$ going in that direction. That dripping stone wall is interesting.

  18. Maybe that will be the end of the snow for this year!

  19. The weeping cliffs are fascinating.

  20. The new library is going to be gorgeous.

  21. The ice on the wall is amazing, and I like the Firefighter statue.

    All the best Jan

  22. I hope they finish that library in my lifetime. I want to see it. It will be beautiful.

  23. @RedPat: very cold water, especially now.

    @Carol: thank you!

    @Karl: a few weeks and things start greening up considerably.

    @Red: I quite agree.

    @Revrunner: it will.

    @Iris: cool but sunny here.

    @Marleen: definitely.

  24. @Bill: it is.

    @Sallie: it's a good thing to do.

    @Happyone: probably, but one can never tell.

    @Marie: ice on rock is quite photogenic.

    @Maywyn: I do like the design.

    @Jan: thank you!

    @Joanne: it'll probably be three years to build.

  25. that is too too funny, i thought when you did say "rock faces" that there would be a smile kind of face. i gotta ya now. great thought. have a great week. ( ;

  26. I quite like the memorial.
    My hydrogeologist daughter would like the rocks!

  27. Hi! Nice post and good observations. If you want to know a little more about the history of this area (and how the street used to look) check out my blog from a few years ago: In particular scroll down to the almost the end of the post which has two photos where you can get a definite view of the cliff face. :)

  28. Really looking forward to seeing the progress of the new library William, the design photo is pretty spectacular! I love the old pumping station building also, good to hear it's still working away!

  29. The icicles on 'the wall' look amazing.
    And we had a snowstorm yesterday :(

  30. @Beth: thanks.

    @Jennifer: I like it too.

    @Andrew: there's quite a difference between now and then.

    @Grace: I've photographed the library site again, which will turn up sooner or later.

    @Klara: thank you.