Back on the Bruce

I’m back in Tobermory for my annual fall solo trip. I’m here a little later than usual (Because of my trip to Lisbon) and it looks to be a really nice weekend for some hikes along the Bruce. I’m only here for two nights so I’m limited to only one major hike and that’s today. So off I go to cover a little bit more ground on the Bruce Trail.

Leaves and Trees

Leaves and Trees

Hiking out to the Bruce Trail from the campsite I had a choice to make. Right or Left? I’ve hiked the trail to the left so I today I’m heading to the right to head south toward Stormhaven. Such an ominous name for a backcountry camping area. At least that’s all I think it is. 😉

Which way

Which way

The plan was to hike past Stormhaven and take a break at Halfway Dump Side trail before heading back to the campsite. That would put my hike at just over 11km. 

View From the Bruce Trail Cliffs

View From the Bruce Trail Cliffs

The Bruce Peninsula always has epic views that go on for miles and this section has so many opportunities to appreciate those views, over and over again. Of course we can’t forget the little things that reside here in the forest – the mighty mushroom! 😀

Forest floor

Forest floor

After my hike and filled up on a hearty dinner I started thinking that I needed to get some night shots before I left for the weekend. With my campsite so close to the lake I got my photo gear together and hiked out to a spot that gave me the best view of the Milky Way.

Reflections of the NIght Sky

Reflections of the Night Sky

It was a beautiful clear night and the Milky Way shone with all her glory. It’s so crazy that we have such amazing views from the earth out into the Universe and so many people don’t get a chance to experience it because they live in a light polluting city. I could stay here forever just looking up into the night sky.

On Home Turf

I’ve been back home for over a week, my jet lag is gone and I’m ready to get my hike on. Today that hike is at Bognor Marsh.

Bognor Marsh Sign Bognor Marsh Sign

It was a bright day and not really that great for photography but hey, there is always something you can find to photograph, just not this sign in the middle of the bright marsh. So deeper into the woods we go to find something a little less glaring.

Bognor Marsh Boardwalk Bognor Marsh Boardwalk

This boardwalk had some beautiful light coming through the trees so I gave that a go. And you know what? It’s one of my favourites from the day.

Bolete Bolete

And then there were the mushrooms. It was, after all, the season to find mushrooms. Although they appear all year autumn is when you find so many different kinds no matter where you look.

Where Did All The Flowers Go?

How quickly the weekend passes. It’s almost time to go home but before we do we have to hunt down some orchids. I mean, it is one of the main reasons we come up this particular weekend.

Sit for a Spell

Sit for a Spell

Unfortunately high water levels have struck the shorelines of Tobermory this year. Singing Sands beach, where we would find some of our favourite orchids, is water logged.

Instead we choose to hike a section of the Bruce Trail we haven’t tried before in the hopes of finding some flowers hidden among the trees. We lucked out on this decision when we came across trilliums galore in the underbrush.

Trilliums

Trilliums

And just as we thought the trilliums were all we would see, we came across a small bunch of Large Yellow Lady Slippers.

Yellow Lady Slipper

Yellow Lady Slipper

I was so excited to see these little flowers that I couldn’t stop photographing them. They all were still in the early stages of blooming. I’m not sure if that’s because we were further south of Tobermory or at a slightly higher elevation (we were high on the escarpment). Either way I was happy to finally see some orchids this weekend.

Cabot Head Lighthouse with Wolf's Milk flowers

Cabot Head Lighthouse with Wolf’s Milk flowers

We made one final stop after our hike at Cabot Head Lighthouse. This is a favourite spot for some pretty great views of the bay not to mention all the wildflowers that grow here.

Tobermory is one of my favourite places to visit, especially in the spring or fall when less people are visiting. It’s become a popular place in the summer months and who can blame them. It’s one of the prettiest spots around.

Early Mornings and Late Nights

We decided to stay in Lion’s Head rather than in Tobermory this year, just for a change in pace. The decision ended up being a good one since our B&B was so close to a harbour with a picturesque view of sailboats in view of the morning sunrise. We knew we had to get up early to take advantage of this.

Sunrise at Lion's Head

Sunrise at Lion’s Head

The sunrise did not disappoint and neither did the view.

After the sun rose over the marina we headed back to our B&B and dug in to a well deserved breakfast. With our bellies full we were ready to conquer a hike on the Bruce Trail.

Driftwood on the rocky shoreline.

Driftwood on the rocky shoreline.

It turned out to be a great day with clear sunny skies and a bit of breeze as we hiked along with shoreline of Georgian Bay. I made sure to get really low on the shot above to make the driftwood seem much larger than it really was. Changing your point of view can dramatically change your photo results. Give it a try next time you’re out.

Lakeside Daisy

Lakeside Daisy

As we were driving back to the B&B we noticed an area filled with Lakeside daisies, so you know we had to stop and get some photos. Again I decided to get very low for this shot. The daisies are very short at only a couple inches so shooting down on them would not have given me the photo I was looking for.

Back at the B&B we got in a short nap before dinner and then it was time to prepare for a late night shoot. My main goal for this trip was to focus on improving my skills in astrophotography. One of the things I wanted to try was a panoramic to capture the full Milky Way across Little Cove.

Milky Way at Dave's Bay

Milky Way at Dave’s Bay

It looks to me as though I may have captured some northern lights. It was a beautiful Way to end a great day on the shores of Georgian Bay.

Vine Covered Homes & Waterfalls

Today I headed with my friend Nigel up to Lion’s Head for a weekend adventure on the trails. This three and a half hour drive can be tedious but there are some goodies to photograph along the way.

Abandoned House

Abandoned House

An old abandoned house, on the west side of the highway, has caught my eye a few times but with the fall colours it was hard not to pull over and get some shots. And then I had to try it out in infrared.

Abandoned House IR

Abandoned House IR

Back on the road after getting some shots of the house we decided to stop at Jones Falls in Owen Sound and make our way along the trail to the bottom of the waterfall. Someone had decided to build a little waterfall guardian at its base.

Guardian

Guardian

I couldn’t leave you without a photo of the falls so here is a view just off to the side.

Jones Falls

Jones Falls

From here we got back onto the trail and headed back to the car for the final leg of the trip.

Mushroom Hike

I joined a guided National Park hike mid-morning at Cameron Lake. I had never taken this particular trail mostly because I didn’t even know it existed.

Well! I’m so glad I decided to join the hike. Why? Because it was all about my favourite thing – mushrooms!

A Line of Red

A Line of Red

Orange Glow

Orange Glow

There is so much variety on this trail. I loved every single moment I was there. The guides must have gotten annoyed at one point as I think I photographed almost every single mushroom that we found.

Hiding Place

Hiding Place

Autumn Orange

Autumn Orange

And one last parting photo for you.

The Butt Shot

The Butt Shot