As mentioned in my previous post, I mentioned that during my recent trip to Canada, I spent a few days camping with my sisters. We headed to Queen Elizabeth II wilderness area, a non-operating park is located in the Kawarthas. QEII is beautiful, natural, and wild. As a non-operating park, there are marked sites, but no facilities (and you don’t need to pay to use the park).
The canoe was packed with gear, the three of us, and Callie, my little sister’s amusingly strange dog.
The wind was FIERCE, and there were many moments when half of the canoe had only air underneath it, as we paddled over the white-capped lake. This was a calm moment of all the ladies, after a rather harrowing lake crossing.
Karen and I had our work cut out for us to power us across the lake, and Allison had an equally difficult job of keeping Callie in the boat. In the end, the pup did a pretty good job – there were actually moments when she was a chilled out adventure puppy. We selected a site where we could get some good morning sun and made ourselves at home. After many years of using tiny lightweight tents that you can hardly sit in, it was such a treat to use Karen’s new pyramid tent. It is still super lightweight (partly because it doesn’t actually have a bottom, and is essentially an elaborate tarp system with a centre pole and a few strings that we pegged out to give it the shape). Look at how spacious this is! So much sitting up possible! Callie seemed trilled to explore the site (particularly the areas that had poison ivy). Once we were settled in, we did some hard relaxing.After dinner, the mosquitoes, the unofficial national bird of the Canadian wilderness, started to carry us away. We retired to the luxuriously spacious tent and played games and played with the puppy. On the second day, we went on a leisurely paddle up to some other lakes. It was stunningly beautiful and quite eventful. At one point, we saw an adolescent black bear ambling around, relatively unconcerned with our presence. In addition to a variety of birds and ducks, we also spotted this native species:We waded into a waterfall (Allison unsuccessfully trying to convince Callie to swim).
We were also sure to stop to take some artsy-fartsy pictures of the droplets of rain on the lily pads. On our way back to the site, it started to POUR. Despite being embattled by winds, waves, torrential downpours, and ferocious mosquitos, it is hard to argue with the spectacular beauty of this place, and the essential role of spending time in the wild to fuel your life and quench your soul. So, I have realized I am very lucky to belong to this group of weirdos who will drag me out of the house and into the woods to have uncomfortable and amazing adventures. Until next time, keep adventuring!
3 thoughts on “Sisters in the wild: Queen Elizabeth II Wildlands”
Some beautiful photos. Was that Sheldon Lake? I haven’t been, but I’ve been scouring the web looking for trip reports to this park, and I think you were in the campsite that most people seem to use. 🙂
Hmm. I actually don’t know. My amazing sister did all the trip planning for this trip, and I just went along for the ride. She knows a ton about the area, and will probably have some great tips for you! You can find her at https://hopefulgoat.wordpress.com/ or on twitter: @HopefulGoat