Bermuda-registered ship becomes first to arrive at Port of Montreal in 2018

It's been a tradition at the Port of Montreal for 179 years — the awarding of the gold-headed cane.

It's awarded to the first ocean-going vessel to reach Montreal, without a stopover, after midnight on January 1st.

This year's honoree is called the Ottawa Express, a ship of Scandinavian origin, flying the flag of Bermuda, which sailed from the port of Liverpool, across the frigid North Atlantic, in about 10 days. It docked at Berth 77 at the Port late Monday afternoon.

The ship's captain, Rakesh Kumar, will receive the cane in a ceremony tomorrow.

Port officials say the honor serves as a reminder that the Port is open year-round — unlike when the honor was first bestowed in 1840, when ice-breakers were unheard of.