Today I helped a friend take his boat to Seattle. Since we had to go into the Lake Washington ship canal, we had to negotiate the Ballard Locks, officially known as the Hiram M. Chittenden (Hiram Chittenden Locks website ). These locks allow boats to safely traverse from sea level up about 22 feet to the freshwater of Lake Union and Lake Washington. Many Seattle boaters negotiate the locks often. I have not been through the locks in several years.
Since this was the last day of a three day weekend, there were a lot of boats waiting to enter the locks. Fortunately, we arrived ahead of a lot of them.
Approaching the locks from Puget Sound, the first obstacle is the railroad bridge. It needs to be up for us to pass through. We had to wait for a while until a train passed.
Approaching the "small" locks. The "large" locks are out of sight to the left. The dam that controls the level of the lakes is to the right.
Into the lock chamber. We were the first boat in.
In the end of the lock. The lake is on the other side of the gates.
The lock chamber is filled with boats ready to be flooded.
The lock chamber is almost full and I can see the lake over the top of the gate.
Leaving the lock. Now about 22 feet higher than where we started.