Algonquin Provincial Park in (sort-of) Northern Ontario is a magical place where canoes meet water and toes meet sand and this past Labour Day weekend provided an opportunity to get out into the park for some serious relaxation and the occasional exploration. The NWO Sauna.. The trip starts with a visit to the Bill’s fantastic property on Kawawaymog (Round) Lake – Northern Wilderness Outfitters. We picked up a stored cedar-strip canoe and loaded up the canoe with our “unique” brand of camping. Because we’re planning on staying at the Wells’ family cabin, our gear is a little different than most people headed into the park, which becomes readily apparent at the first portage when people stare at our full size propane and rolling cooler with a mixture of confusion and disbelief. The beautiful, meandering, Amable du Fond Caroline getting stern.. likely wondering when I’m going to pick up the paddle again.
Riverboat cruising, complete with propane tanks, rolling coolers and garbage bag stuff sacks. Shot across the bow Paddle-dragger Camping babies in hats are the best. Like daughter, like mother, like grandmother… (the can is empty, but I don’t know who drank it…) Like father, like daughter… some Granted wool keeping everyone tasty after a swim. Cabin life at North T is pretty incredible. The buildling has as many stories as it does critters, be it Tom Thomson, squirrels or bats. And as the only cabin on the lake, it provides an immense feeling of remoteness and solidtude while offering up beautiful scenery and the occasional thunderstorm. Still, the real beauty of a weekend at T with no phones is the narrowing of the world down to the people present and the people missed. No meetings are scheduled, no work is done – unless of course you count the upkeep and adjustment of solar panels, food preparation and staring at the lake for hours. Family portrait – North T Life This guy wouldn’t stop fishing, we almost paddled over him. Felt hat life, pre-storm surge headwinds And then we somehow ended up Ottawa! This trip was made possible and awesome by the incredible members of the Wells’ family. With their hospitality, I drank beer every single day, ate delicious food and babysat occasionally for short periods of time. All in all, and excellent adventure. However, the dark center of this silver-lined cloud is that Caroline is moving back to Halifax for a final semester of school… hopefully the family and good times have propelled her to an inspired and easily-completed Masters program! This unfortuantely made the flight home quite boring, until I was entertained by the majesty and epicosity (that’s right – epicosity,) of the Rocky Mountains, followed by the peaks of the Coast range. In the scope of this landscape, four months is nothing and Caroline will be back west in no time! Looks familiar to anyone? Epic ridgelines Rockies, curving off into forever. Window seat is always the right choice. Coast range, slamming up through the ocean Near….. faaaaaaaaaaaar…… Near….. Mamquam…… Faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar…. Atwell/Garibaldi