It's that time of year again. February brings Winterlude to Ottawa and Gatineau for three weekends. The thinking up here being that if you can't beat winter, celebrate it. The opening weekend is done, and the crowds were out. I thought I'd do some blogs on it during the festival, and so this is the first one. I am taking pictures, though these aren't mine. They're lifted from other sources. I'm still using film cameras (disposables, at that, damn you camera for dying on me!).....
Things started on Friday with fireworks above the Ottawa River. I wasn't there; I was off doing a bit of cross country skiing. This time I managed not to have any near-collisions with a deer.
The Rideau Canal is the centrepiece of the festival. Over seven kilometres in the heart of Ottawa are cleared for skating, and people take advantage. It is, in fact, the world's largest outdoor skating rink.
Finally, on the first weekend, there are the ice carving contests. More pictures of that in the coming days, but for now I thought I'd leave you with these. First off, the tools that are actually used to get the job done might include these:
It starts off with chainsaws, and from there ice carvers work their way down to saws, chisels, sandpaper, awns, and whatever other piece of equipment might come to mind. Incidentally, that includes irons.