Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lake Superior Provencial Park

There are advantages and disadvantages to being self-employed. On the down side, the hours are long, the pay is generally terrible and success can be a long time coming. One of the biggest advantages, however, is that you don't have to put in for vacation months in advance. So when one of your recently unemployed friends sends you a message on Facebook and says, hey, I'm going to Canada next week, wanna come? you have the option of saying yes!

The original plan was to do a few days of backcountry camping in Lake Superior Provincial Park in Ontario. But a few days before we were to leave, my traveling companion Karin fell into a window well at her house and bruised her leg and hands pretty badly. We decided it would be more enjoyable if we car camped and did a few day hikes and easy kayaking instead. So we loaded up our 'yaks and a mountain of gear (hey, we had a trailer, why not?) and made our way to the Great White North.

In June the north is not white, of course, it is very densely green. Thick stands of spruce and birch crowded the roadside. The drive to the park follows the eastern edge of Lake Superior and is just spectacular.

Less than a half mile inside the park's southern boundary is the Crescent Lake rustic campground. We had planned to camp at a different location but we were already road weary and decided to check it out. Turns out this campground had been opened only two days prior, and there were only two other campers there. We found a gorgeous site on the lake with a small beach area down the hill and decided so stay put.

This is the view from the beach area of the campsite. Ah....

Karin on the shore, with the trail up to the site behind her. You can just see the top of the tent above her head.

There were lots of wildflowers, including blue flag iris, tall meadow rue and this Joe Pye weed, just getting ready to bloom.

There was also a lot of evidence of beaver activity, like this poplar branch with chew marks.

There was a short trail near the campground that we decided to hike before dark, that I will write about next time. When we returned we spotted the creator of the beaver-chewed sticks, on the other side of our little arm of the lake.

Here he is dragging a branch into the water.

He was soon joined by another, who took his stick away and began to munch. We watched for some time, and after a while a third swam by, waddled into the woods and emerged dragging a leafy snack.

It was a gorgeous evening with the sky clearing in time to give us a lovely sunset.

Even the moon made an appearance, four days from full. We felt like we'd found a little slice of heaven.

Next: Crescent Lake trail


  1. What a gorgeous place! Especially loved that lake photo!!