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Algonquin Park: Trees, wildlife and something sweet

July 24, 2015

 

It was enough of the city life for the time being and with the chance to take a few days off work lead to an escapade to Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada.  With 3 days and 2 nights spare, the itinerary was set and we were on our way.

 

Now for those of you playing at home, Algonquin Park is located about 3 hours’ drive north of Toronto and is a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of Toronto.  Head to the Ontario Parks website to book a campsite.

 

 

Car hire will cost around $50-$80 a day for the 3 days.  Check out the useful websites article to find out how to get the best deal.  The fuel will cost around $65 for the entire trip.

 

Before you venture into Algonquin Park I would definitely recommend stopping off along the way.  Have you ever wondered where or how Maple Syrup turns up on your table or poured over your pancakes?  Well, something unbeknown to me until a couple of months ago, it is actually produced naturally by the maple tree.  We humans do a little tinkering to make it ready for use but this is definitely left up to the sugar makers.  About 10 minutes’ drive south of Huntsville in Ontario Canada is a quaint little maple Syrup farm known as the Sugar bush Hill Maple Farm.  Here you find a couple of passionate sugar farmers by the name of Tom and Pauline.  Both invite you into their world of sweetness and display a love of maple syrup which is infectious for all who attend.

 

Rated number 2 on TripAdvisor of things to do in Ontario, it is definitely worth the stop off.  Check out the tour times and more information on the Sugarbush Hill websiteMy favourite Maple Syrup is the ‘Light’ one.  Which one is yours?

 

 

After driving another 40 minutes we arrived into our campsite – Canisbay Lake.  It’s a great little campsite with everything you need including hot showers, flush toilets, fire pits, picnic tables and of course a local black bear which was roaming the area and keeping us on our toes.  Read through the black bear information.  The campsite is located on a lake with free delivery of canoes if you so choose.

 

There are over 20 walking tracks throughout the park catering for the Sunday strollers to the hard-core hikers.  We decided to do 3 walks during our time, all with self-explanatory guidebooks.

 

 

Peck Lake – Allow an hour and a half to walk around this picturesque lake.  Be sure to read the guides as they provide an insight on how the lake provides life for an abundance of animals.

 

Track and Tower – This is my favourite walk we did.  It is an 8 km walk which offers everything you want from a hike.  There are a few private lakes, remains from the logging days and a panoramic view over the trees.

 

Hardwood Lookout – A short walk which takes about half an hour to complete and describes how the trees interact before finishing at a look out.

 

 

The other big activity we chose to do was to hire a canoe for four hours and paddle about.  We drove to the happily named Canoe Lake and rented a canoe from the Portage Store.  The staff were friendly and helpful and there is even a little café upstairs where you can get a coffee or bite to eat.  The canoe cost around $34 for half a day. The Portage store can even sort you out with everything you need for a canoe/camping trip.  Contact them before hand and let them organise the trip for you.

 

If you are feeling adventurous and want to organise everything yourself, feel free to use this checklist of items to take:

 

Tent

Blow up mattress

Pump

Sleeping bags

Camp chairs

Lighter

Pillows

Camera with spare batteries

Camping stove

Camp light                             

Cooking utensils and fry pan

Water bottles

Bug spray

Sunscreen

Washing up liquid

Deck of cards

Enough food for the trip

 

Contact me for any further information or if you do make a trip up there, let me know via Instagram or Facebook.

 

 

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