Thursday, August 30, 2007

on with the photographs

ok... so we left off on night 3, wherein we broke the rules and stayed at a group campsite even though there were only the 2 of us - the proper campsite was little more than the end of an ATV trail, with a fire-pit added in. And it was super buggy, so we didn't want to stay there.. . the group campsite was HUGE (obviously), was totally open to the stars and the bug-removing breezes, and it overlooked part of the river that we'd be canoeing down the next day (our little twisty creek met up with the big river here). After we'd set everything up, we also realized that this part of the river was home to Mr. Castor and his family! Here's the still shot of him swimming (at least we assumed this one is a Mr. beaver, cause he was massive)

and here's a little video (quality is not so great - sorry!)...
video
the beavers (we think there were 3 or maybe 4 altogether) were not at all afraid of us as we sat on the riverbank watching them. First the big guy came out and swam around and looked at us, then he went over to a fallen tree on an island in the middle of the lake and started eating the leaves off one of the fallen trees. Then a wee little one swam over, and kept trying to steal the leaves the big one pulled off the tree. We sat and watched for a good half hour (sorry, no pics cause we don't have a good enough zoom lens) and they didn't even care that we were there! Very cool... usually you only see beavers when they're slapping their tails on the water before diving into it for safety!

Breakfast the next morning... yummy oatmeal, every day for a week :)
Just as a point of interest, this is what we do with the food at night, to keep the animals out:
We call it the bear rope, as in "Mikey, can you go take down the bear rope so we can have breakfast - I'm starving!", but basically its all the food (and the toothpaste, and anything that smells yummy) in a couple of waterproof dry bags, hanging from a rope that was thrown over a tree branch - at least 10 feet high, and 6 feet from the trunk of any surrounding trees. Most of the time its pretty hard to find a suitable spot, so you kind of end up with a bear pinata... which is why the tree also needs to be a good distance from the campsite. Fun, eh? (let me ask you that again after you leave your food in your pack on the ground, only to find it in the morning, all full of mice holes! nevermind the bears...)

part of a waterfall we camped near on night 4

the bottom of that waterfall (taken the next day when the sky wasn't quite so blue)
spider's web... I was trying to do one of those dew on the web shots, but the background wasn't dark enough. but I still like it


The area we were paddling in was once heavily logged, and the the Chochocouane River was used to transport the logs out of the woods to where they could be loaded onto trucks. In several places there are old bridges, and the remains of old log chutes near the waterfalls and rapids. I'm guessing this was once attached to the log chute next to the campsite in which this was sitting.

this is the rapid/waterfall the chute would have bypassed. the two logs in the bottom left corner are part of the old chute structure.

The requisite campfire shot, this one from Thursday (I think)

By Friday, the rain that was predicted for Wednesday (but didn't show en force till Thursday afternoon) had well and truly set in... or so we thought. Just after hitting the water on Saturday, it started to POUR! But we pressed on to the campsite (there's a point at which you just can't get any wetter, so you just keep going despite the weather) and quickly rigged up a tarp so we could change and dry out our clothes. or at least put them on the line under the tarp so they didn't make the rest of our stuff wet too!). We even managed to assemble the tent and the rain fly under the tarp, so all we had to do was run it out and peg it into place

Then we made hot chocolate and took refuge inside! :)

The rain continued heavy well into the night - it was so heavy that to get washing up water, I just left the empty pot under the spot where the tarp was draining - a full pot in less time than it took to cook dinner! here's the lake that formed where the tent fly was draining off...

And yet, despite all the rain, this was our sunrise:

yes... we were up with the dawn. Only time that week, too... I suppose that's what you get for sleeping the evening away the day before (I went into the tent about 3:30-ish... read for an hour or so, then woke up at 7:30!) :)

Over breakfast, I learned that tin pans should not be used on camp stoves. Otherwise, they get a little thin in the middle and bumpy on the bottom. Chalk this up to melting mishap #306 (or thereabouts)(this is the view of the bottom of the pan... oops!)

Mikey at breakfast, doling out the camp coffee... love the camp hair!

But being up early meant we were off the water, back at the car well before noon... good thing too, cause that way we had time to get home and clean off a week's worth of dirt before going out to dinner that evening! Honestly, I think I still haven't managed to get the dirt out of the cracks in the skin on my fingers!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glenda,
The pots are not tin pots, they are aluminum, therefore throw them away and get stainless steel. It is dangerous to eat from aluminum pots ,you can get Alzheimer's. That is proven. Tin is used to coat steel, and it is too expensive to make pots out of tin. This from your very smart Dad. We had to throw out all our aluminum pots years ago when they advised everyone to not use them any more. I still do not believe in beavers as I still have not ever seen a real one. Anything can be seen in the movies. Ho Ho From you know who. To me Beavers are like leprechauns, only to be seen by certain people.