CONTRAST: Her Version, His Version
I was reticent to travel from Ottawa to Achray on Saturday morning, so I reserved a suite of rooms at the Grey Gables Manor bed and breakfast in Pembroke. I had stayed there before on a cycling trip and enjoyed it immensely. It is a luxurious splurge. We had a series of rooms, we were booked into the Library. There was the main room - the library with a wood burning fireplace, two bedrooms, a bathroom with a big tub, a nice shower, two sinks and two ornate mirrors that looked great, even though I would have never selected them myself. There was a separate bathroom with a toilet and sink. LT wanted to leave earlier than the breakfast that came with our room reservation, but I knew it would be delicious. I convinced him to stay long enough to have breakfast, instead of Tim Horton’s drive through, and asked the proprietor if we could have it served a half hour earlier.
|Mirror, mirror on the wall....|
We were a bit later than we planned at the outfitters to pick up the canoe. Once the paperwork was filled in and the canoe strapped on, the next step was to get our park permit at Sand Lake Gate. We made it to the campground at Achray shortly after 10 a.m. I took pictures of the glassy lake while LT unloaded the car and loaded the canoe to his plan. By the time we set off at 11, the water had gone from glassy to wavy, but not overly rough.
|Grand Lake - like glass!|
We paddled into the wind towards where we thought the first portage was. We kept going, and going, and going, until we got to Carcajou Falls. Oops. We could hear the falls, but didn’t paddle the extra 20 feet to see them. LT checked the map and realized we had missed our turnoff into the first portage. It took us an hour off course by the time we paddled back to the right spot.
|Rock with petroglyhs|
|Very first portage we did together - 50m|
We steamed down St. Andrew’s Lake without any problem. The next portage was 550 M. We did a double carry. We were lugging a lot of stuff. You’d think we were out for a week! High Falls Lake was really pretty with islands. It wasn’t a far paddle then we were in Ooze Lake after the 300 M portage. I was starting to flag. I can paddle and walk, but add a huge pack and uneven ground and don’t feed me lunch and I start to act like a cranky 3 year old needing a nap. Ooze Lake was creepy. It is full of floating rhizomes. We could easily canoe around them, it just gives me the willies looking at something that looks like “land” in the middle of the lake that you know very well you can’t stand on. There were a fair amount of dead trees in the water too. Fortunately it’s a very small lake.
|I'm not sure exactly which lake this is|
The tent was erected, dinner was started. My responsibilities were minimal. I unpacked my brand, spanking new sleeping bag. I had scooped a silk bag liner from my son’s European trip stash. I tossed my clothing bag and my pillow into the tent as well. I had brought my new hiking shoes as well as running shoes. We had been total princesses all day, neither of us had gotten wet feet. The dangling hiking boots off the back of my backpack had been much more of a nuisance than anything else.