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.

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

Lifestyle Shoot and Evening Hike

One of the things I decided to do while I was up here camping was to shoot a few different lifestyle shots. Although it’s not the typical thing I post here I decided to share with you one of the photos I created.

A Walk

A Walk

This particular shot was quite challenging. I’m barefoot in the photo and that rocky path was pretty darn sharp. After a large number of shots and walking back and forth more than a dozen times, I finally got something I liked. What do you think?

Sunset View

Sunset View

After the shoot, I had to boot it over to Singing Sands where I joined a guided hike from the National Park Service. The hike was supposed to be a night hike but it was still a little early in the season for it to be dark out. We learned a number of things about how night animals use their other senses to find their own and to hunt. It was quite a lovely walk and a great learning experience.

After the hike I took the shot above. I lucked out with someone posing in a good spot as the sun went down behind the tree line.

Trails, Rest Stops and Stars

I started off the morning with a great hike around Cyprus Lake. I stopped about halfway around to take the photo below, which I believe if you look straight across the lake that is where my campsite is. (Not that you can see it or anything…I’m just guessing.)

Mid Hike Rest

Mid Hike Rest

As I approached the ¾ mark on the trail I found a perfect little bench to take a rest with no real views of the lake but a good place for communing with the trees.

Sit and Rest

Sit and Rest

After lunch and a long afternoon chill out session my plan was to head to Singing Sands for a sunset shoot followed by dinner and then back to Singing Sands for some night shots.

Fringed Gentian

Fringed Gentian

Well, the golden hour was definitely golden. The sunset, however, was not so dramatic. Actually, photographically speaking, it was boring. So I didn’t bother with showing you those photos. Instead…

Venus Setting

Venus Setting

After dinner was when the show really happened. As the sky became fully dark, the stars started popping out one-by-one. And then the Milkyway rose up to greet me. If I remember my stars correctly that bright star casting its reflection on the water is Venus.

Ah…what a night. I could have stayed there forever but sleep was needed as tomorrow was another day to spend with nature.

Cyprus Lake Campground Day 1

I’m back at my favourite place in Ontario – Cyprus Lake campground located in the Bruce Peninsula National Park. I’m here for the next 5 days! There is some rain in the forecast but I’m hoping for mostly clear skies and lots of campfires.

Sun flares

Sun flares

And I’m just a short walk away from this.

I love messing around with sun flares in the trees. And yes I purposely left it slightly crooked because I loved how this looked. I can do that because I’m the artist…lol

Late Day Meditation

Late Day Meditation

Late day mediations on the shores of the lake are always the best spots. I was on my way out to claim a spot for the sunset when I happened to pass this person communing with nature.

Cyprus Lake Sunset

Cyprus Lake Sunset

At first, it didn’t look like it was going to be a spectacular sunset but then this happened. Out of nowhere. I love when the skies come out to greet you like this. It reminds us that we must be patient because sometimes there is great stuff waiting for us.

Night Sky at Cyprus Lake

Night Sky at Cyprus Lake

And for the final hurrah of the day, I went out for some astrophotography near the same spot I was at for sunset. Although the clouds were coming in they didn’t block the entire Milky Way. This was a test run for when I venture out to Singing Sands when the skies clear.

Flowers of the Bruce

On our final day in the Bruce our goal was to photograph the flowers that were blooming this time of year. The Indian Painted Brush can be found by the side of the road south of town and if it’s a good year the roadside will be covered with them. They can be found in other places around the Bruce but I find that this is the best spot for them

Painted Brush
Painted Brush

We also stopped at Crane Lake, one of my favourite spots for flowers this time of year. It’s where I know to find the Nodding Trillium. Until I started coming up this way I had no idea that there was a Nodding Trillium. And their a tricky one to find since they grow facing the ground rather than the sky.

Nodding Trillium
Nodding Trillium

Of course that’s not the only flower you can find here and some are still opening up to the world.

The Opening
The Opening

And you’ll always find the Yellow Lady’s Slipper – these are hard not to spot this time of year. They are pretty much everywhere once you know where to look.

Yellow Lady Slipper
Yellow Lady Slipper

That’s it for our excursion to the Bruce for the Orchid Festival. I’m always sad to leave the Bruce behind but I know I’ll be back again very soon.