Sunday, July 20, 2008

Georgian Bay - Philip Edwards Island (near Killarney)

It's hard to imagine a better place for kayak-camping than the Georgian Bay. Thousands of picturesque islands, many of them publicly owned with free camping access outside of provincial park boundaries (first-come first-served basis).

We circumnavigated Philip Edward Island on a 7-day (6-night) expedition in early July with our guides Denis and Jérome of Détour Nature ( Transportation was provided to/from Montreal as was all kayaking and cooking equipment. Participants provided camping equipment and clothing.

The islands include a surprisingly diverse array of flowers.

The islands also included some spectacular wildlife. Below is the only venomous rattlesnake in Ontario, the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake:

The food in two of our kayaks was gulped down by a young black bear just as we were loading up to leave for the day. Below is a picture of Mama Bear who obviously wasn't supervising her young cub closely enough!

The scenery was breathtaking and we enjoyed this trip so much, we're already planning on going back as soon as possible.

We truly enjoyed sharing this experience with a fine group of participants, we'll cherish the memories for a long time to come.

Photo credits: first and last picture by Françis Simard, all others by author

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Friday, July 18, 2008

First Eskimo Roll in a Sea Kayak

After a few hours of practice in a pool this winter with a river kayak, here is my first Eskimo roll in a sea kayak last week!