So I called up my friend Nigel and asked him if he was interested in a road trip to Algonquin Park. Now, Algonquin is over 3 hours away from our homes and its usual for us to get ideas like this, We’ve gone up to Tobermory for the day (3.5 hours one way) for a day. We’ve gone for drives that take us out to Bon Echo only to find it closed (it’s about 3 hours away). We feel that it’s always worth a drive and plus there are lots of places to stop along the way so it’s never a wasted trip. And today was pretty epic because – Autumn.
I mean, look at these gorgeous colours. How can you not take the opportunity to drive up? We had a pit stop in Huntsville were we got the idea to drive a little further north to Screaming Heads. Not sure what I’m talking about? Well, Screaming Heads is an art installation that is absolutely spectacular to see in person. Or course, we should have done some checking on whether it was open before we drove 30 minutes out of our way. Because of Covid-19 the place was closed to the public. Luckily we had our long lenses and caught a few photos from the road.
This photo doesn’t do the installation justice. It is a tiny portion of a massive area filled with all sorts of statues. I am putting this back on my bucket list for next year. Form here we headed back down towards Algonquin Park, We stopped for some lunch and decided that rather than going into the park we would head over to Oxtongue River.
It was definitely the better choice considering our limited time. I photographed these 3 paper birch trees across the rushing river.
Oxtongue River 2
But when I saw this twisted tree I knew I had to figure out a way to get a shot of it. I tried all sorts of angles. I ended up going back to the car to get my wide angle lens just so I could get enough of this twisted tree in with the river and the autumn colours. This photo is definitely one of my favourites from the trip.
Want to learn more about Screaming Heads? Check out them out here.
My friend Galina suggested a trip to the Carden Alvar located in the Kawartha Lakes region. It was a great opportunity to photograph one of Ontario’s newest provincial parks. So with my friend Nigel joining us, we all headed up to the Alvar for a day of shooting.
Since this new park is quite large we had to choose a specific area to explore so we started our day at Cameron Ranch. With an overcast sky above us to somewhat mute the harsh sunlight we set out on a hike in this beautiful park.
There was so much to see. The Alvar is full of all sorts of wildlife and flowers. I couldn’t get over how much was flourishing here. This bee was busy working away getting the pollen for his hive from some crown vetch.
The most interesting flowers that I came across here was the Prairie Smoke flower aka Old Man’s Whiskers. What fun names for such an interesting looking flower. I have never seen anything like it. It was also on of the hardest flowers to photograph because of its wispiness.
Hiking further down the trail I came across this Tawny Crescent butterfly sunbathing on some flowers. I’m surprised I didn’t startle it into flying away but it was nice enough to stay around while I shot some photos.
After spending most of the day at Cameron Ranch we decided to get in one more hike before heading home. Out next stop was place called Prairie Smoke. As we started heading over the clouds broke open and the rain came down. By the time we got over to Prairie Smoke the rain had petered off and we were able to get in our short hike without getting wet.
It was a quick hike here but I came away with some great photos. My favourite was of the raindrops that had accumulated on this Yellow Goatsbeard. It was a great day here at the Carden Alvar and I look forward to more trips here in the future.
You can find out more about the Carden Alvar here and here.
It’s the last day of our trip to Algonquin but the exploring isn’t done just yet. After breakfast we head out to Big Pines Trail for what we hoped would be a snowshoe but the melting snow didn’t make for good conditions.
After our hike on the Big Pines Trail we decided to do one more hike at Spruce Bog Trail. This trail is always a good spot for spotting birds and other wildlife.
We were not disappointed as we were greeted by a nuthatch and a couple chickadees. A red squirrel also joined us and was more than happy to pose for our photos.
As is traditional we stopped one last time at the Mew Lake campground to see if we could spot the Pine Marten again and we were lucky enough to have him come out of the forest and visit us.
Although hesitant he was more than happy to eat the seed that people have left behind. Another great trip to Algonquin comes to an end but we look forward to future trips here.
We’re on the hunt for wildlife. Each year we hope for a glance of a fox or even a moose but so far we have been unsuccessful and today proves to be no different.
Its chilly out and the wind by the water makes it hard to stay there long. The sun helps but only when away from the biting wind. Our walk/drive down Opeongo Road is unsuccessful so we all decide to hike the Two Rivers Trail.
This beautiful walk through the woods brings us no closer to finding any wildlife. Are the animals hiding from us? Most likely. Or we’re just hiking the wrong places.
This was our last day in Wawa. Actually more like half day. There had been no luck so far in finding these massive waves that apparently happen on the north shore but we are still hopeful. The wind had picked up overnight so we are hoping to get great shots today.
We went back to Old Woman’s Bay for one final look and although the waves were much larger than the day before it wasn’t exactly what we were hoping for and temperatures in the were very chilly.
Our final stop in the park was at Katherine’s Cove. We were happy to see a lot more waves breaking along the rocky shoreline and I am happy to report that I have way too many photos of these waves.
Katherine’s Cove doesn’t just have a rocky shoreline, it also has a lovely sandy beach from where I can sit and take many more photos of waves breaking on the shoreline.
We spent quite a lot of time at Katherine’s Cove but eventually it was time to get warm and start heading in the direction of home. As we drove along the coast towards McKerrow, our home for the evening, we found a couple spots were the waves were exactly as we imagined.
We couldn’t stay here very long as we needed to get to our motel and get a good hot meal before heading the rest of the way home tomorrow but this cabin photo is one of my favourites of the weekend.