The Rideau Heritage Route offers another route for observing the beauty and history of North Grenville and the Rideau Canal. Discover this UNESCO World Heritage Site as it winds through historic places, charming villages, interesting attractions and fantastic recreational areas between Kingston and Ottawa. It is 202 kilometres (125 miles) long, of which about 19 kilometres (12 miles) is man-made (locks and canal cuts), the rest are natural waters. The canal winds its way through historic sites, charming villages and spectacular recreation areas, offering visitors a variety of experiences.
The section of the Rideau Heritage Route that passes through North Grenville is part of The Long Reach, the longest section of the Rideau Canal uninterrupted by locks (40 km / 25 mi). The river channel winds through the countryside and makes for an excellent location for boating and fishing.
Points of Interest
Burritts Rapids is a quiet little community, one of the first established on the Rideau. The village itself is on a small island, although you'll find the Church and several residences located on the north shore. Feature of the island include the the Tip to Tip Trail and Lock 17. There is one set of locks which lift boats 9 feet into the next section of the river.
This was the site of a post-canal ferry service and then later, a bridge. The ferry traversed the river at the location of marker buoy N171. The original landing was located about 200 metres west of the present day Becketts Landing Bridge.
In 1864/65, a swing bridge was built at a narrow part of the river (Fisherman's Point), some 500 metres upstream of the original landing. It had five spans, the southernmost was the swing bridge. In about 1902, the wooden spans were replaced with steel spans (the swing bridge remained wood). The bridge fell out of use when the fixed highway bridge (today's Becketts Landing Bridge) was built in 1936-37. The timber swing bridge was removed for use at Fort Henry in Kingston. The concrete bridge abutment for the original bridge can be seen on the south side of the river. On a calm day, you can look down, about 25 ft/ 8 m out from the abutment, and see the remains of a former bridge support about 10 ft / 3 m, underwater.
Once known as the South Branch of the Rideau River, the name was changed to Kemptville Creek in 1908. The creek itself is 63 km long, but less than 5.5 km of paddling will take you up the creek from the Rideau River to Kemptville. Although the creek between the Rideau River and Kemptville is in a 10 kph "watch your wake" zone.