20 Years From Now...

"20 YEARS FROM NOW," Mark Twain said, “you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than the ones you did.”THIS online journal is dedicated to our next 20 years!

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Superior Summer

Nothing beats the summertime like warm temperatures, good friends, and time to explore this incredible province we call home. This past Sunday and Monday John ticked off two more items on his bucket list while I was totally content to stand by and watch. ;-)

Lake Superior Provincial Park

Our first stop Sunday afternoon was Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario's waterfront. We joined ten other adventurous souls to stroll, walk, hike the boardwalk that's located on the St. Marys River. It connects Lake Superior with Lake Huron, provides numerous hiking trails for locals and tourists alike, and provides some spectacular views of the city itself. 

The history of 'the Soo' is impressive. It's one of the oldest settlements in North America, dating back almost 2000 years. Former inhabitants include Native Americans, of course, plus Jesuit Missionaries, explorers, voyageurs, artists, solders, traders. This past weekend a few transient members of Elliot Lake's Coureurs de Bois hiking group were added to the list.

The sun shone down without mercy and I doubt I was alone in both welcoming and appreciating the cool water breezes as the mercury climbed to its highest point so far this summer. We passed a gaggle of Canadian geese on our way to the locks. 

John was quite excited to learn he could kayak the locks with the bigger boats and ships. Me? Not so much. Who in their right mind would want to jockey up to something this size or larger?

Next, we stopped for a picnic lunch close by this incredible building. 

Then we crossed the river via the pedestrian bridge to tour the south part of Saint Mary's island.

We didn't expect to have to navigate a washed out section of the trail between it and Whitefish Island, but the rush of cool water between our toes was divine.

Astrid agrees...heavenly!
Once we reached the other side and were all safely sitting beneath the shade of the gazebo we were all smiles and chuckles and Rae decided it was time for a group photo. Say cheese!

L to R: Emily, Marty, Dianne, John, Astrid, Josephine, Natalie, Gary, Jean-Guy, Donna
The majority of us reserved a cabin or campsite at the Glenview Cottages north of the city for the evening, so that was our next stop.
Photo courtesy of Tripadvisor.com
John and I opted for a one-bedroom cabin and it was perfect for our needs. The kitchen had every amenity required, the queen size bed was comfy, the outdoor pool warm and inviting, and the cottage owners did everything to make our stay special and memorable. (I gave them a 5-star rating on Tripadvisor.com and would highly recommend staying here.)

Our Sunday afternoon, however, was far from over. Next on the list for the group's thrill seekers was ZIP LINING at Tree Top Adventures, north of the city. First on the agenda (after signing the legalese waiver, of course) was deciding whether to opt for the Big Zip (400 feet long and spanning a  scenic ravine reaching heights of 40 feet) and/or the Mega Zip (three times faster and 3 times longer than the Big Zip). That done, everyone got acquainted with the straps and gear designed to keep them safe.

A practice run on a line approximately 9 feet above the ground gave some indication of what to expect.

But I doubt they really had any idea until they climbed the Big Zip tower and stepped off of the platform into space! 

Big Zip - Tree Top Adventures


Next on the agenda was the Mega Zip. Five brave souls opted to give Ontario's fastest zip line a go. Is anyone surprised the three women completed all of their runs while the two men decided against it after one 1000 foot run at 80 kilometre per hour run down the line?!

All gender jokes aside, I couldn't have mustered the strength to even contemplate climbing down the ladder from the landing tower let alone ascending the tower to begin the journey. Just looking up made me queasy! 

The good news is everyone survived Tree Top Adventures intact, minus a few bruises here and there...

Jean-Guy, Rae, Emily, Natalie, Josephine, Donna, John
Bright and early Monday morning the hikers in the group headed north to Lake Superior Provincial Park to hike from Sandy River to Katherine Cove. The photos are gorgeous, but belie the difficulty of the terrain. The entire hike involved climbing up and down the massive rocks as the group edged their way along the rocky shoreline because the bush was simply too dense to allow them safe passage.

Boulders the size of cars....

Walking across deep crevices....

Fantastic views on calm waters....

Valleys and dips and dives....
What a day!
Serene and haunting Lake Superior coastline
A special thank you to Jean-Guy for arranging this weekend's events and being our fearless leader. As I stated at the beginning of this post Nothing beats the summertime like warm temperatures, good friends, and time to explore this incredible province we call home

Life. Is. Good! 

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