Friday, September 2, 2011

Museums, Kiwi Drivers, and Bears, Oh My!

We spent a final night at the Holiday Inn Express in Huntsville, Ontario, on a pull-out couch. Really, it wouldn't have mattered if we had spent the night hanging upside in the bat cave. We were both just glad to be across the road from a Kelsey's where there was beer and steak (since the local Beer Store closed 2 minutes before we arrived).



After barely making the breakfast bar, we headed back to Algonquin Park to go the logging museum, the visitors center and the beaver pond trail.

Donald Lloyd's book ("Canoeing Algonquin Park" http://www.amazon.ca/Canoeing-Algonquin-Park-Donald-Lloyd/dp/0968655602) had given us both much historical information about logging in Algonquin and we wanted to check out what the park had to offer. The museum is history rich and a must stop if you want to see how the park was shaped into the beauty that it is today.

Camboose Shanty

Stable

Alligator

Replica of a grave site - the fellow is actually buried somewhere else in the park.

We had read about the remains of an alligator on one of the lakes, about men dying in the frigid spring thaws. It was interesting to see the replicas that the Friends of Algonquin had put on display.

Last time I went to the visitor center I was a kid. I remember thinking it was so enormous that it took me hours to look at all the displays. So not the case. M and I watched the movie, looked off the observation deck, and spent 15 minutes checking out the displays. (It could have taken us longer, I think M just rushed through it because he was going to have the chance to drive my dad's van afterwards...)

View from the observation deck.

This is as close as we came to a deer or a golden eagle. We did see plenty of ravens and crows, though.


We went to the beaver pond on the way out of the park in a last ditch effort to see some beaver - no go, but we did get to see lodges, dams and meadows. It was a great day to walk the trail (probably because we weren't in the middle of nowhere so the weather decided to hold...)

Beaver dam.

We went to a garbage disposal area on the way home (by Kennisis Lake) and saw some black bear.



Closer to home we stopped at the Kirkfield Lift Locks (part of the Trent-Severn Canal System: http://www.trentsevern.com). Unfortunate that it was too dark for M to get many pictures, but he got the basic idea of how it works.

View from the top of the liftlock.

We arrived in Toronto after 10, exhausted, but stayed up until 6 in the morning recapping over beer. What a day! ;)

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