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.

The Tower and the MAAT

After spending a couple of hours at the monastery (see the previous post) I had to move on as they were closing for the day. My next stop was to Belém Tower to catch the sunset. On my way over I noticed this little lighthouse that perfectly aligned with the sun. 

The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse

Not much further from the lighthouse was the Tower (you can see it in the distance in the photo above). A couple of nights before they had quite the celebration here and the scaffolding was still up so I didn’t have a lot of great angles to play with as I took my photos of Belém Tower.

Belém Tower

Belém Tower

I was lucky enough to catch the sun off the side tower as it was setting. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a vantage point that worked for what I had in my mind. After checking out all the angles I decided to move on and make my way over to the MAAT. The MAAT is the Museum of Art, Architecture, and Technology located on the other side of Belém close to the train station. Since the sun was going down I wanted to get some fun night shots of the museum and the Ponte 25 de Abril bridge before heading back to the apartment.

Ponte 25 de Abril

Ponte 25 de Abril

As I walked the long road toward the MAAT I was greeted by this modern art piece lit up on dock just in front of the bridge. I”m not sure who the creator is or why it’s there but it’s definitely a conversation piece for those walking along the river.

Maat and Ponte 25 Abril

Maat and Ponte 25 Abril

I waited patiently to get the photo above as there were quite a number of the people on the steps in front of me when I arrived. Surprisingly they all left quickly once the sun disappeared. I think they missed the most beautiful part of the day but it was a bonus for me. The MAAT is a uniquely shaped building, as you can see from the photo above, and what I loved most was the fact that you could walk a ramp up its roof to get some great views.

MAAT Roof and View

MAAT Roof and View

I had a great evening out here in Belém. I’m also a little sad as there is only one day left before I leave this beautiful city behind for home. But there are a couple more places I have to visit in central Lisbon not too far away from the apartment before that happens.

Lisbon Under The Stars

Built on the slope overlooking Baixa stands the ruins of Igreja do Carmo, whose roof gave way during the earthquake of 1755 which left only its walls and the chancel standing. This beautiful structure is now a museum with many artifacts located inside the chancel. Since 2018 they have been hosting a special event called Lisbon Under the Stars. And tonight my friends and I are in attendance to enjoy this  event.

Washed Away

Washed Away

Lisbon Under the Stars is  “an immersive journey into the history of Lisbon told with visual effects, music and actors”. The ruins are transformed with images projected 360º onto the walls of the Carmo telling the story of Lisbon from over 600 years ago leading up to modern day.

Greenery of the Carmo Convent

Greenery of the Carmo

Lisbon’s history is told in both Portuguese and English, alternating between the two as the scenes around change over and over again as the story enfolds. I have never seen anything like it before. 

Stars inside the Carmo

Stars inside the Carmo

Learning about Lisbon’s history in the way was not only entertaining but extremely informative. It’s an experience I would recommend to anyone who gets a chance to be there when they host this event.

Lisbon Under the Stars

Lisbon Under the Stars

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.

Pumpkinferno

On a whim, I called up my friend Nigel and asked if he wanted to head up to Penetanguishene to photograph Pumpkinferno. If you’ve never heard of Pumpkinferno before its an event where artists carve pumpkins in elaborate designs and they light them up all October up until Halloween. I’ve been wanting to go to the one in Upper Canada but it’s quite the trek and even though Penetanguishene isn’t just around the corner either it’s certainly a few hours closer.

Here are some of my favourite photos from the event:

Pumpkin Maple Tree

Pumpkin Maple Tree

Underwater Adventurer

Underwater Adventurer

Just Buried

Just Buried

Great Escape

Great Escape

Dragon in the Castle

Dragon in the Castle

Devil's Gate

Devil’s Gate

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.