TSW and Rideau Canal – Water Management Updates

Recent News:

starting April 4, 2022 – Parks Canada is undertaking consultations on the draft Trent-Severn Waterway (TSW) Management Plan. The management plan is a key instrument for delivering Parks Canada’s mandate to protect and present nationally significant examples of Canada’s natural and cultural heritage, and to foster public understanding, appreciation and enjoyment in ways that ensure the ecological and commemorative integrity of these places for present and future generations. The introductory letter (PDF, 2 page) and a copy of the draft plan (PDF, 23 pages) provide further context.

The Plan is up for review and public comment between April 4 and June 30, 2022 via an online platform where you can share your thoughts. There are also in-person sessions scheduled for late May through early June; see dates and details on the online platform (link above).

An OVERVIEW from FOCA about Water Management:

According to Parks Canada, “National historic sites are places of profound importance to Canada. They bear witness to this nation’s defining moments and illustrate its human creativity and cultural traditions. Each national historic site tells its own unique story, part of the greater story of Canada, contributing a sense of time, identity, and place to our understanding of Canada as a whole.”

Two of these national treasures are the Rideau Canal National Historic Site of Canada, a 202km long operational canal with 47 locks; and the Trent–Severn Waterway (TSW) National Historic Site of Canada, an operational canal 386 km long, with 44 locks.

Many FOCA members are on lakes and rivers that form (or feed) the lakes and rivers of the TSW (Trent Severn Waterway) and Rideau Canal.

The TSW and Rideau management was merged by Parks Canada in 2012. (Read about it, here…)

FOCA notes that significant reductions in the capital and human resources dedicated to these waterways puts their ability to adequately manage water, and water-related activities, at risk.

ImportantTSW Water LevelsIf you’re located on the Trent Severn Waterway or feeder lakes and want to track your water levels, see: Parks Canada – Water Levels. (Note: the webpage can be slow to load.) To access the maps, click “I accept” then select your region and lake, to compare historic highs & lows with this year’s daily statistics.

Background and related links:

Earlier News:

May 27, 2020- Limited visitor access and basic services on TSW resumes June 1, 2020 (Parks Canada)

April 15, 2020 – On April 15, Parks Canada announced that the opening of all visitor services, including moorage and lockage along canals and waterways of the TSW and Rideau, is delayed until at least May 31. (The agency had originally expected to open the navigation season to the public by May 15.) More information and updates:

June 2016 – Federal government announces investments of $267.5 million for @25 infrastructure projects across the  Trent-Severn Waterway National Historic Site.

January, 2016 – Parks Canada has announced their 2016 lock deals:

  • Early Bird Offer: Until March 31st, receive 10% off mooring with the purchase of a seasonal lockage & mooring package ($1 off per foot), or one free night of mooring with the purchase of a 6-day permit. Click the image at right for details, or visit www.pc.gc.ca/canals.
  • from May 20 to June 30th, purchase a single lock & return permit or a one day permit at lock stations and receive a second permit of equal value for free, when you present the special 2 for 1 coupon. Get your coupon at boat shows this Spring, at the Spring Cottage Life Show and at numerous Marinas.

Older News:


Michelle LewinTSW and Rideau Canal – Water Management Updates