Saturday, October 2, 2021

A short Fall trip to Algonquin Park


We had a short trip this past week, heading North to see some colour. We do enjoy a fall trip usually, and this one was special as my eye sight has suddenly improved. On Monday the week before, I had cataract surgery in both eyes. Wednesday morning this week was the second followup in London, and things are "Fantastic" according to the surgeon. So Wed afternoon we were on our way North.

With no particular destination in mind, we expected to end up in a campground in Algonquin. The daylight started to get away from us though, so we checked in to Arrowhead Provincial Park, just north of Huntsville. We were able to get electricity to run our little heater, as the nights are cool.

On the way there we started to see some good colour, around Bracebridge especially, so had hopes for tomorrow.

Our Arrowhead camp in the woods

In the morning we left in good time, getting on Hwy 60 towards Algonquin Park. The drive in and through the Park had some great colour. This looks like it will be an exceptionally good colour year up that way. There's good colour already, and lots of green left to turn. A heavy leaf canopy this year.

Along the Oxtongue River "Hogs Trough" area

The day was pretty bright through Algonquin. 

A curious Raven

Continuing out the East end of Algonquin, we decided to loop down through Haliburton and back up to Arrowhead Park for the night. 

A scenic lookout over the town of Haliburton

Lots of colour and more to come

We arrived back to Arrowhead Park about 4pm, expecting to stay there again with an electrical hookup because of the cool nights. Only to find that the power had been abruptly shut down in the park that day, and would be out for the whole month of October! There were several irate campers in line angrily waving their registrations for electric sites. 

When campground security arrived, complete with bulletproof vest (!) we decided to head elsewhere. Bass Lake Provincial Park is near Barrie and on the way home, so we headed there. The office was closed by then and we were greeted with the printed announcement that reservations were now required for all sites, all the time. Even if we reserved online right there, we wouldn't get a confirmation until the next day, so "no room at the Inn" for us.

Well, there is a KOA on down the road a ways, so try there. They were still open, and we could get a basic site with electricity. When they finally disclosed it would be $76 for the night though, we thanked them and left. We haven't stayed at a KOA for many years, and it looks like it will be many more years before we do again.

At this point it was getting pretty dark.  We were only about 2 1/2 hrs from home though, so decided to stress-test the new eyes and head for home, with Cathie being the backup if I had problems. So away we went, setting a route to avoid the construction detours we encountered on the way north around Wingham.

All went well. Traffic calmed right down, and was not heavy on the less-travelled ways we took. It was a nice clear night, and we made it home safely with no drama. 

The new eyes worked well, better at night than before. Now it's time to put the van away for the winter (after the oil change service next week) and we'll have another trip to remember.

Approximate routes: