Wednesday, September 06, 2006

non-labourious labour day trippin'

For the last long weekend of summer, Mike and I decided to run away from all those we know and love, and spend some time alone in the woods, with only the bears for company.

So we hopped in the car bright and early Saturday morning and made the 570km (350 miles) drive to Killarney Provincial Park.. i think the distance on this is funny, because its like driving from Newcastle to Brighton just to go camping! and it only took about 6 hours - we were there by noon, and then had to canoe and portage for another 4 hours before we made it to camp... but somehow, when dealing with Canadian distances, 350 miles just doesn't seem that far! :)

Anyway, click here to see where Killarney is - the park is back up the road a little, on the north side... but enough of that, lets get on to the photos...

the trip was a very lazy one for us, about 7 or 9 km of paddling each day, and about 4 portages to get in and out (the longest being a very painful 3.16km!). but we stayed at the same campsite for both nights, which made for a very lazy Sunday... slept till about 10, had a long pancake breakfast, and spent a few hours curled up under the camp blanket with a good book... thank goodness for the therma-rest chairs on that day! part of our lack of desire to be super-energetic was the fact that Hurricane (or was it just a tropical storm?) Ernesto was passing over our neck of the woods. (that's why the skies are all grey and cloudy in the pics) But we really didn't get ht badly, seeing as all of the real rain fell at night, after we'd gone to bed (Ottawa, on the other hand, got drenched all weekend!)

Here's mike at the start of the trip, bringing the canoe down to the water so we can pack up and get moving... I finally tried to portage that thing on one of the really short portages - trust me, carrying that canoe is harder than it looks!

A canoe with a view!
more views!

Our campsite was on this little tiny island at one end of Three-narrows lake. It was perfect, despite the fact that we had to canoe to shore to find enough firewood for the weekend... This is the view from the south side, just after sunset. Not that you can see it here, but the water in Killarney Park is so clear that you can see all the way down to the bottom of the lakes, a good 20 or more feet below. The water is also the most amazing bluey-teal colour - sort of similar to the blue of the mediterranean sea in the greek islands. When the winds die down, the water is like a big mirror, but it plays tricks on your eyes because at the same time you can see both the reflection of the shore on the water, and the dead trees and rocks at the bottom of the lake - almost as if it were one of those pictures with a plastic overlay on top, like in a kid's book on ancient ruins - the photo below is the current ruin, and the plastic overlay shows what it looked like in Roman times. but I digress...

(its a little dark, sorry!)

another night view

Here's a similar view of the first shot, in the daytime... if I flipped it over, you almost couldn't tell which side was up!
Part of the fun of camping for us is our now-traditional competition for the best camping desserts. we used this trip alone to try out our new proto-type reflector oven - here it is baking our muffin cake (with just 2 of us, we couldn't justify real cake!)

the flash has canceled out the flames here, but the premise of this oven is that it uses the heat of the fire to bake things... we made ours from aluminum ducting metal and three steel threaded rods... it packs up flat, and weighs only a pound or two. to quote Ms. Stewart, its a good thing! :)

Here's mikey stoking the fire again, post baking

and here's Hudson, also post-baking, pigging out on muffin cake! (see, i told you we spent the weekend with the bears!)
they look like such innocent bears, don't they?!

after a very long reading session on Sunday, we canoed up to the top of the lake and went for a little hike. the park has a big long loop trail that goes all the way around the park, and takes about 7 to 10 days to complete (most of the campsites are down on the lakes so it involves a lot of going up and down hills!) Mike and I, in a heroic effort, hiked about 30 minutes up one cliff...
but the view was totally worth it!

Mmm... dinner! (again, being super lazy, we bought those pre-packaged dehydrated camping meals. they really are better than they look!)

On the way out of the park on Monday, we found proof that fall is approaching...
(trust me, the reds were far more vibrant in person)

and then we made a new friend!
(yes, this violates all good camping rules. but he was just so cute and friendly!)

We also tried to make friends with the real bear that we saw on the way home, but he dissapeared back into the woods before we could paddle to shore (or even get the camera out). I think Hudson and Frobisher must've told him stories about us so that he wouldn't try to eat our food. those bears are so greedy! :)

2 comments:

PURLPOWER said...

The camping looks gorgeous but the meal looks sort of scary!

Great pics Glenda!

glittrgirl said...

Wow you look like you had a great time! Very picturesque.