BLOG – LAKE ONTARIO – LAKE OF SHINING WATERS

Last week Hudson Restoration held a “Staff Appreciation Day” and thanks to Nick & Steve the staff was able to spend a beautiful, fun filled day in a gorgeous yacht facing the intrepid skyline of Toronto on one of the most iconic lakes in the world, Lake Ontario.  I had never been on a yacht and so this was a very exciting day for me!

In a recent article by Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, I discovered some fascinating facts about our “backyard” lake….

  • Lake Ontario provides drinking water to 9 million people
  • The name comes from the Iroquoian language and means “Lake of Shining Waters”
  • The lake was formed from “The Laurentide Glacier” which once covered all of Canada. It began melting 14,000 years ago and as it retreated it left behind Lake Iroquois which would become Lake Ontario
  • “The First Nations were the first to live in the watershed, arriving some 7,000 years ago”
  • All of the water in the Great Lakes flows through Lake Ontario and eventually into the Atlantic Ocean. For this reason, “fish travel back and forth from the ocean to the freshwater lake…”
  • Water takes 6 years to flow through Lake Ontario to the St. Lawrence River
  • Niagara Falls pours into Lake Ontario
  • Lake Ontario is partially in Canada, partially in the USA.
  • Lake Ontario is the most threatened Great Lake
  • Today, the greatest threats to Lake Ontario come from urban development, electricity generation, and sewage and stormwater pollution.

Now, I could go on with 1,000 more fascinating facts,  about Lake Ontario but instead, lets move onto the grandeur of the Toronto Skyline..She looked like a “Giantess” standing proudly beside her lake of shining waters.

While enjoying the last of the summer sunsets onboard the yacht on Staff Appreciation Day, and seeing Porter’s Bombardier Q400 planes fly  overtop from the iconic Billy Bishop Airport, I realized I felt like a tourist viewing Toronto’s futuristic skyline for the first time…..It was as if Toronto had tried on a brand new outfit, and I was looking at it in wonder…couldn’t take my eyes off of the condos, the lights, the new age architecture, the Distillery District that has been transformed into one of the cultural centres of Toronto with its film studios and art galleries and night life….and of course, the city’s biggest upcoming project, The One Tower, which is currently under construction and boasts that upon completion  it will be the biggest building not only in Toronto, but the entire country.

All of this is great…why, it’s not only great…but it’s amazing!  We live right in the middle of a city that is changing  exponentially every single day….progress is inevitable but let’s not forget that mother nature has the last word ….With over a 150 species of fish and over 100 beaches, the “lake of shining waters” deserves everyone’s protection as she nestles her away around the burgeoning skyline, sloshing back and forth in rhythmic motion every 11 minutes.

WRITTEN BY:  SHARYL HUDSON