Locking through the Rideau Not much has changed in the last 180 years or so. Not on the Rideau Canal, at least. Sure, there are shorepower ports these days, and electric lighting, and the lock staff have even started carrying short-range radios. But the lock gates are still winched open by hand, the water flow is still controlled by hand-cranked valves, and boats are still coaxed into position with rope, muscle and a bit of shouting. Even in the chaos of the August long weekend, it's a tranquil throwback to a simpler age. Well, most of the time.