Needing Some Healing Time In #AlgonquinPark

Mowat More than ever before, Algonquin will become my hide away.  Before Christmas my dad was diagnosed with Leukemia – which is a blood cancer.  It’s been not only a rough road for him but also the rest of our family.

Algonquin is known as the wilderness playground.  It offers beautiful vista’s, picturesque lakes, and a chance to get away from it all.  Often explored by outdoorsmen and families it is a great get away.  But what about it’s ability to heal?  I’m not talking physical healing where you go and you’re cured of whatever ails you.  I’m talking more of emotional healing.

Over the last 5 years Algonquin has become my hiding and healing place.  When I lost my mom I immediately went into survival mode.  I had a family to care for and as the oldest I felt responsible.  When mother’s day came along I went to the one place that I felt whole…Algonquin.  Being one with nature, miles away from the everyday, in the serenity of that beautiful park gives you time to think and to reflect on things that you often can’t focus on in the busyness of life.

The thing about Algonquin is that you don’t have to go far into the interior to begin to feel the healing powers of the park.199_16528381202_4794_n  For me often all it takes is a hike up the Lookout Trail and sitting on top of the lookout to start to feel at ease and less anxious about life.  I always have a notebook, a camera and a pen with me.  That way when I need to I can write what I feel and help sort out what’s going on.  The other place f0r me to get away as weird as it sounds is on Canoe Lake.  The mysterious lake already hides a great mystery so I feel at home there.  Sometimes I climb up to the cairn…other times I go to the Joe Lake Dam.  The cairn is where Thomson often camped so I feel at home there.

Another way that I find healing in the park is by camping solo!  It may be within a campground where you are close to people if you’re new to this…or it could be jumping in the canoe and going on a 2/3 day canoe trip.  The key thing is…do what makes you feel in control and relaxed.  Other times you may feel that you need just a day.  That’s cool too!  My life may be in a bit of turmoil emotionally at times but I know that there’s a place out there where I can become whole again and have a different outlook on life…a positive one.  I hope that you can find a place or spot within the park that you can call yours to get away from everything and heal.

~Enjoy your trip

 

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Fall Colour Trend

I’m heading north for Thanksgiving and I know there are other’s heading up to.  Unfortunately, the colours are now past peak.  This fall has been a fairly wet and windy one.  Because of that, a lot of the leaves are gone already.  It will still be beautiful and fresh up north if you go.  You just might not get as many colours as normal but there still will be some left on the trees.  Just to even take a walk on the Lookout Trail would be pretty!  Here is the Fall colour report from the Friends of Algonquin Park:

fall_foliage_6_pastpeak

Courtesy of the Friends of Algonquin Park

 

Just to remind you, our contest to win a Complete Set of Jeff’s Maps ends on Monday.  Good Luck to All!

~Enjoy your Trip!

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A Time to Heal

MowatAlgonquin is known as the wilderness playground.  It offers beautiful vista’s, picturesque lakes, and a chance to get away from it all.  Often explored by outdoorsmen and families it is a great get away.  But what about it’s ability to heal?  I’m not talking physical healing where you go and you’re cured of whatever ails you.  I’m talking more of emotional healing.

Over the last 4 years Algonquin has become my hiding and healing place.  When I lost my mom I immediately went into survival mode.  I had a family to care for and as the oldest I felt responsible.  When mother’s day came along I went to the one place that I felt whole…Algonquin.  Being one with nature, miles away from the everyday, in the serenity of that beautiful park gives you time to think and to reflect on things that you often can’t focus on in the busyness of life.

The thing about Algonquin is that you don’t have to go far into the interior to begin to feel the healing powers of the park.199_16528381202_4794_n  For me often all it takes is a hike up the Lookout Trail and sitting on top of the lookout to start to feel at ease and less anxious about life.  I always have a notebook, a camera and a pen with me.  That way when I need to I can write what I feel and help sort out what’s going on.  The other place f0r me to get away as weird as it sounds is on Canoe Lake.  The mysterious lake already hides a great mystery so I feel at home there.  Sometimes I climb up to the cairn…other times I go to the Joe Lake Dam.  The cairn is where Thomson often camped so I feel at home there.

My life may be in a bit of turmoil emotionally at times but I know that there’s a place out there where I can become whole again and have a different outlook on life…a positive one.  I hope that you can find a place or spot within the park that you can call yours to get away from everything and heal.

~Enjoy your trip

 

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Hiking Trails

Throughout the Hwy 60 corridor there are 19 interpretive hiking trails that you can enjoy during your trip to the park.  Some of them are quite long, like Mizzy Lake and Centennial Ridges, and others are reasonably short, like the Lookout Trail or Spruce Bog Boardwalk.  Before doing any of the trails you need to take into consideration your physical abilities that way no one gets hurt.  Lets take a look at some of the trails.

  1. Spruce Bog Boardwalk:  This is the easiest trail in the park.  It’s 1.5km long and has been made accesible for wheelchairs.  This is a great trail to do with the kids as there is a huge rock at the end that they can climb…or at least we used to :).  Spruce Bog is located across from the Visitor’s Center
  2. Lookout Trail:  Located just beyond Pog Lake Campground, the Lookout Trail is a 1.9km hike that takes you to beautiful vistas.  This is my favorite trail in the whole park as it gives me a spot to sit and reflect on things and it offers the photographer in me some great shots.
  3. Mizzy Lake:  This is a longer trail (11km) but it does offer you some great opportunities of seeing wildlife.  This hike takes my family about 4hrs so I suggest that you start earlier in the day.  Your best chance of seeing wildlife is early morning so if you are eager and willing I suggest going at 6/6:30am.  You will visit 9 lakes and ponds along the way.  No dogs are permitted on this trail!
  4. Booth’s Rock:  This 5.1km trail offers magnificent views, 2 lakes, and a walk along the old abandoned railroad.  The trail ends along the shores of Rock Lake so you could take a picnic lunch and your swimsuits for a swim if you wish.  This is a great educational trail if you read through the guide as it discusses the people’s impact on Algonquin Park.  Booth’s Rock is located within the Rock Lake Campground.
  5. Big Pines Trail: This 2.9km loop takes you through a forest of large white pines.  It’s a fairly easy trail with the opportunity to see some of the last of the large white pines.  It also takes you through an old logging camp from the 1880’s.  This trail is one of the newer trails and I love hiking it.  This trail is located across from Rock Lake campground.
  6. Algonquin Logging Museum:  Although not a traditional trail, the logging museum offers families a chance to take a walk through the park’s logging history.  It’s a fairly easy trail that is wide enough that strollers can be taken along.  There is a bookstore on site as well as an informational video about the logging within the park.  The logging museum is located by the East Gate.

These are obviously just some of the trails along the corridor.  There are many more.  To find out more about hiking within the park visit: Algonquin Park Trails

~Enjoy your trip

Trip Report – Mother’s Day 2009

Today marked the 4 month anniversary of my mom’s death but instead of moping about all day…I went to Algonquin to enjoy a place her and I both loved.

It was a cool day in the park and this morning the campers woke up to snow on their picnic tables! Yes…I said snow! After stopping at the park gate to get my day pass I headed to the Visitor’s center…and I hoped to see a moose on the way through. No moose but a nice visit to the museum none the less.

After the museum I headed to the lookout trail which is one of mom’s favorites. Be warned…the trails are still quite boggy due to the spring run-off. The view as always is gorgeous and you can see things starting to turn green! The trail itself was in pretty good condition and lightly travelled.

After the lookout trail I headed to the Hemlock Bluff trail. This trail should be named the Hemlock Swamp trail. There is tons of wet muddy areas that you have to go through. I had forgotten how long that trail is. The trail takes you to a lookout overlooking the Madawaska River and then down beside a lake. It really is a gorgeous trail.

All in all it was a great day in the park and I look forward to doing more as the summer progresses. The bugs are just starting to come out now but they aren’t that bad yet because it has been too cold.

I took a ton of pictures and you can find them at : http://tinyurl.com/pvr8ra

Happy Mother’s day to all the mom’s out there!

~Enjoy your trip

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