Algonquin – July 15-23, 2017 – Part 2

We fell asleep to the sound of rain hitting the trailer.  All of us enjoyed a good night’s sleep and we woke up ready to do more exploring. The girls donned their rain boots and splash pants to play around on the wet campsite. Both girls have splash pants from MEC. While more pricey than others, they are much more durable in my experience, and truly waterproof. Em’s will’survive to be hand-me-downs for Lyssa and I’m sure even after that I’ll be able to donate or consign them. They go on sale from time to time. I find the sizes do run a bit large so I just roll them up to get even more use out of them.

Sticks are always popular!


We packed up the car (quite an ordeal with two small ones) and drove to Opeongo Road to look and listen for birds and other creatures. Success! Em got to see a beaver!

After the drive down Opeongo, we headed to the Beaver Pond trail, a nice 2km trail that visits a pond and a lake, both created by beavers. Lyssa happily went up the the Tula baby carrier and Em once again insisted on being the line leader. Our big girl proceeded to guide our family  through the entire trail, hiking with such determination, and warning us of rocky and wet sections ahead! It was so exciting to see her have such confidence outdoors. This was definitely a proud moment for me.

Our line leader!


We stopped for a few minutes to watch the beaver dam. No beavers in sight here though.

Lyssa enjoys a ride in the Tula while looking at the beaver dam


This is a stunningly gorgeous trail! It was a bit buggy down at the marshy section, but overall not too bad.

Beaver dam trail


From there, the trail ascends to a beautiful scenic view. I think this is a great trail for young families. It was short enough that it kept our 2 year old’s interest (and she could hike the whole thing) and provided stunning views.

Scenic view on the beaver dam trail


After our hike, we went to the Algonquin Visitor Centre for lunch. What a difference from our winter trip when we had the place to ourselves. It was packed! We managed to secure a table but it was a challenge to keep two hungry and tired kids happy while daddy waited in the long line for food!

We hit construction along highway 60 and it took awhile to get back to our campsite. After a quick snack, we went off to the beach! The Canisbay beach is great for kids. There are a few small rocks, but lots of sandy spots too. The girls played hard, digging holes and trenches. It is amazing to watch them play together! Lyssa, unlike her cautious sister, is fearless and I definitely didn’t get to relax at the beach!

Playing hard!


The small one passed out after dinner so I had the rare luxury of spending time alone with my big girl before she went to bed. We messed around with snapchat filters and giggled our hearts out before laying down for a cozy sleep.



We woke up on Tuesday morning to perfect weather. The whole family was relaxed and happy – we had adjusted to camp life. After an easy morning at camp, we drove to the Peck Lake trail, a 1.9km hike that circles the lake. Em once again lead the way, this time pointing out all the mushrooms along the trail.

Our trail guide hikes up a rocky section


This was another beautiful trail with lots to see including many dragonflies and damselflies. While I don’t have a pic, I was excited to see an Ebony jewelwing damselfly.

bug watching with daddy


Once back at camp, our exhausted small one took a decent nap, while daddy and the big girl went to the beach. Finally, some much-needed me time! I tidied up the campsite, made some coffee and relaxed in our new hammock. It’s a Therm-a-Rest double slacker hammock and it is fantastic! Ahhh!



On Wednesday, we woke up to some gentle rain, so we changed our plan from bike riding to a visit to the Visitor Centre for some indoor exploration. Em coloured a Brook Trout and put it on display. She worked very hard on her colourful fish and was excited to pin it up!

Indoor fun!


We explored the nature exhibits at the Visitor Centre. Lyssa was absolutely delighted and ran around pointing to all the animals. She pointed out every bird, including my favourite, a Great Blue Heron hanging overhead. She announces every bird as “Guh”. We have no idea why as she is capable of a “b” sound, but she’s been consistent with it for months so we just go with it. She loved the live fish display.

After lunch at the Visitor Centre we headed over to the Spruce Bog trail, an easy 1.5km loop that is mostly boardwalk. Lyssa took a short nap in the Tula while Em once again led the way. Our big girl remembered the trail from our winter visit, even pointing out the exact rock formation where she had seen icicles back in January! A rather tame Red Squirrel followed us for much of the trail.

After the hike, we drove Opeongo road again and wound up at the Algonquin Outfitters store where we enjoyed some ice cream by the lake. We had promised out big girl some ice cream on this trip so it was time we delivered!

Ice cream with a lovey view of Lake Opeongo


We weren’t quite ready for dinner after our ice cream treat, so we decided to head over to the Mew Lake campground to check out the bike trail that we had plans to tackle in the coming days. Much to our delight, the trail runs through an old airfield that was filled with ripe blueberries! While no bears were in sight, we tasted just a few and taught the kids the importance of leaving food for wildlife. Mmmm, fresh wild blueberries are delicious! Sometimes the best moments of vacation are those that are not planned.

Old airfield at Mew Lake was filled with blueberries!


Stay tuned for still more from this amazing trip!

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