Barrie, food, art and au revoir, not goodbye

12 May 2017

Our last stop of the day was the city of Barrie. On the map it looked like a huge sprawling thing, at least in comparison to Gravenhurst and Orillia. According to the sign we passed it had a population of 136,000, a little over half the number of people living in Southampton. There’d been precious little time for proper research so we really had no idea where to go or how easy it would be to find somewhere to park. More by luck than judgement, we ended up driving right into the centre of town where we found a car park on Lakeside Drive.  Continue reading Barrie, food, art and au revoir, not goodbye

Orillia and little black flies

12 May 2017

Yet again I was awake not long after five this morning. As it was our last sunrise on Gull Lake I sat on the balcony to enjoy it. When Commando woke up we had a leisurely breakfast and returned to the balcony for a coffee and a last whistful gaze at the wonderful view. Not knowing when, or even if, we’d be coming back it was bitter sweet. This wonderful country has really stolen our hearts and we were sad to be leaving.  Continue reading Orillia and little black flies

From the trail to the lake

11 May 2017

Like the trees clinging so tenaciously to the rock, I am not normally one to give up and turn back in the face of adversity. Today was not a normal day though. If I’d been on my own I may have tried to find a way around the blocked trail. This might have led me to become hopelessly lost. It might not. Although Commando wasn’t complaining, I knew his leg was still giving him pain and I didn’t want our short walk to turn into a very long one, especially as we have to drive back to Toronto tomorrow. The only thing for it was to turn back.  Continue reading From the trail to the lake

Hahne Farm Trail

11 May 2017

“How about a little walk on the trail up the road?” Commando said. “The one with the big stone inukshuk.”
“The Hahne Farm Trail,”  obviously I didn’t need asking twice.
We’d been sitting on our balcony watching the Canada geese and goslings on the lake below, drinking coffee and resting from our morning adventure in Huntsville.  I was pretty sure Commando had only asked because he knew I was secretly disappointed by the lack of trail walking we’d done so far rather than any real desire to go walking on his part. Still, it was a short trail, around the same distance as a parkrun, and less than a mile from our chalet. If it proved too much for Commando’s leg we could easily turn back. Continue reading Hahne Farm Trail

Let’s go to Huntsville

11 May 2017

My twisted body clock woke me at quarter to five this morning. It was quarter to two in Vancouver and quarter to ten in England so goodness only knows what time zone my brain was in. The merest hint of pink was just beginning to show above the tree line outside. I took a quick photo and then tried to go back to sleep. Half an hour later I gave up. My body was determined it was morning so I might as well listen. The sky was a little lighter now, the line of pink rising up to meet the midnight blue sky.  Continue reading Let’s go to Huntsville

Testing the Test Boardwalk – first published 24 August 2014

After my 2014 visit to Eling Tide Mill I headed for the Boardwalk across the River Test. In truth I didn’t really know where I was going. When I saw the sign for the long distance Test Way walk I double checked on WalkJogRun just be be really sure I went the right way. Much as I’d like to try the forty four mile walk one day when I have time on my hands and I’m feeling strong it wasn’t something I wanted to tackle on a Sunday afternoon when I had loads to do at home. Once I left the sign, the bridge and the River Test behind me it wasn’t long before I came to the Test Boardwalk. Continue reading Testing the Test Boardwalk – first published 24 August 2014

Eling Tide Mill – first published 24 August 2014

At the end of August 2014, I finally got round to the Eling Tide Mill walk. Even so, the walk started off in a grump. I’d intended to have a shortish walk, maybe five miles or so, and attempt the Eling Tide Mill on Tuesday. When I looked at the weather forecast it seemed Tuesday was going to be torrential downpours though. This rather put the cat among the pigeons. Then I realised I’d forgotten to charge my phone so I had to hang around drinking coffee while it charged. Not a happy bunny. Continue reading Eling Tide Mill – first published 24 August 2014

One of those weeks but some shed progress – first published 23 August 2014

Sometimes you just have one of those weeks and the penultimate week of August 2014 was certainly one for me. It seemed to be a week of forgetting things, missing out on walks, weird questions and unreasonable, shouty people on the phone. Through it all the beauty of the walks I took get kept me going, along with some progress on my blue shed.
Continue reading One of those weeks but some shed progress – first published 23 August 2014

From sea to sky

6 May 2017

Our brief stop at Porteau Cove had showed me beauty beyond my wildest dreams. Now we all agreed it was time for lunch. Jen and Kevin knew just the place, The Howe Sound Brewing Company in Squamish, a one time hop Farm turned micro brewery. The rustic atmosphere ticked all the right boxes and the food was perfect. According to Commando, so was the beer, although it took him a while to choose. Replete and happy we found our way back onto Highway 99 and headed from the sea to the sky. Pretty soon we were looking up at the Sea to Sky Gondola and, behind the low wooden building, the tumbling water of Shannon Falls, the third highest waterfall in British Columbia. I had the feeling my dreams were going to get a lot wilder before the day was out.

Continue reading From sea to sky

Porteau Cove

6 May 2017

Today we were very excited to be going up into the mountains we’d been staring at since we arrived in Vancouver, courtesy of our wonderful tour guides, Jen and Kevin. The plan was to head towards Whistler on Highway 99, otherwise known as the Sea to Sky Highway, for obvious reasons. The highway crosses the causeway that cut the Lost Lagoon off from Vancouver Harbour and runs all the way to the United States border. It is two hundred and fifty four miles long and was listed in the Guardian newspaper as the fifth best road trip in the world. We would, of course, only be exploring a small part of it.  Continue reading Porteau Cove