Canisbay Lake

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Last weekend, I went camping — legit camping in tents, not in cabins like I've done (rarely) in the past... at Canisbay Lake, Algonquin Park. As I was typing the location of my campsite, I couldn't help but slightly giggle at the fact that somehow it sounded similar to "cannabis lake". I'm not a pothead I swear. I may however, be slightly dyslexic?

I went with my boyfriend and his group of friends. We left early Friday morning, stopping at Huntsville on the way. I was excited and nervous at the same time. I'll admit, the last time I camped was in grade 6 for a school excursion. That trip was situated in cabins though, and it was during the winter. We're full fledge summer mode right now, so this experience was miles apart from that one. It was raining throughout Friday, which made setting up that much more difficult. Worse is that I'm a complete n00blet when it comes to tents, so half the time, I stood helplessly in the rain looking to help people whenever I could, even if I didn't know what I was doing. 

It wasn't entirely bad though. One of our friends was secretly a chef in his double duty life  quite the talent in culinary arts, having prepared properly marinated chicken meat on skewers with vegetables on the first night (pictured above) and spicy sausage for the next morning. Our meals definitely would not have been the same without him.

Since it was raining throughout the night, our group didn't do much except gather around the fire, socialize and just chill out. Time seemed to pass by especially slow that night, as the poor weather and lack of service/WiFi didn't help matters. Our campsite(s) were situated rather far from the shower and washroom station (even if we had a shortcut trail, that trail still took a bit, especially in the dark), so by the time I freshened up, people were already roasting marshmallows.

Our next day was much more interesting. The majority of us wanted to hike on a trail, while the rest chilled. I was pretty pumped to hike because I love the idea of exploring, sightseeing and getting some exercise along the way. The six of us decided to take the Track and Tower Trail, which was a 7.7 km loop-around trail.

Warning: I took a lotttt of pictures during the hike...

I feel like I should've taken a picture as I was going uphill so that you can truly see how steep that hill was (as opposed to overlooking down the stairs). Then again, I was too busy huffing and puffing and mentally encouraging/forgetting about the dreaded uphill. Honestly, the trail itself wasn't that bad. It was only this part that was killer. That and my stamina has never been my strong point, lol. But it was totally worth it, because the lookout point was absolutely beautiful!

Trees on trees on trees...

Two hours (and a bit) later, my group and I finished the hike. I had never hiked 7.7 km before, so it was nice to know that I was able to do that. I almost fell off a hill at one point because those pesky bugs kept buzzing around my ear and my attempt to swat them made me lose my balance (definitely a pointer to anyone not to do that while hiking downhill with a bunch of rocks in the path!), but I'm A-Okay :)

Next up was canoeing at Canoe Lake.

At one point, my friends and I decided to stop at a mini island to take a break. Most went swimming, but I felt like being dry for that afternoon, so I decided to snap some additional pictures and fiddle with my zoom lens which I hardly use.

Yes, it was pretty risky to bring my camera with me when I went canoeing, especially since I witnessed a couple of instances of other canoes capsizing, but I guess "go big or go home"??? I mean, I'm quite content that I can share/document my experiences visually on the internet, so it's not too bad. Besides, my boyfriend sat at the back of the canoe to steer, so at least we had one person that knew what he was doing (yes, it was my first time canoeing too). 

Overall, my first legit camping experience was pretty fun. There were certainly things that encumbered my enjoyment (i.e poor weather, getting bitten numerously despite wearing bugspray, resource centers/showers being quite the distance, strict park wardens <-- not that I had anything to do with it...) but for the most part, I would be up for camping again. I'd just have to make sure to be more prepared for the next time, and there were little things that I learned along the way that would definitely apply for a future camping trip. Even though most people hate the idea of not having WiFi for more than 24 hours, I wasn't too bothered by it. It was refreshing to have a whole weekend that didn't require me to check on my phone (bringing a watch helped heaps in keeping track of time), and it allowed me to appreciate "the great outdoors" that much more. 


Until next time!

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