Back Country Canoe Trips, Part 11 – 2011

This was our final year doing this kind of trip (for now).  In the years following, 2012 and 2013 two of us had surgeries.  In 2014 Clint and I retired and then our “big” trips started.  We would leave May/June and return home October.  In 2018, we stayed in Ontario traveling and did get in another back country trip.  I hope to be able to do a few more years of this but the way we travel now, I don’t know.  Anyways, this year Back to Pen Lake !

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Portage access from Rock Lake into Pen Lake
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Clint portaging the canoe

So we made it back to Pen Lake.  We had a huge big site, up above a rocky shoreline.  It was pretty spacious and open.  Lots of room for us and we were able to see anything coming lol

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Campsite

So a fair walk in behind our site was the toilet.  And I mean literally a box as per below photo.  No roof, no walls, just you and nature.  This type of camping is not for everyone.  You take your roll of toilet paper and off you go.

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Clint went for a little paddle on his own and snapped this photo of us relaxing at our site

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The rocky shoreline of our site

This is the third time we have been on this lake and we have had three different sites and we have loved each and every one of them.  All were unique and I don’t know which would be my favourite.

My sister and I would swim off these rocks and I remember one day when we got out of the lake, Clint asked me a question.  Here is how the conversation went:

Clint – what was that swimming in the water with you?  It kept circling you for a good 20 minutes.

Me – What????

Clint – the animal in the water, what was it?

Me – and you are just thinking to mention this NOW?  Why didn’t you yell at me when I was in the water with it?

Clint – I didn’t want to scare you or startle the animal.

Me – (&^%*(((*^%?)*

Anyways, pretty sure it was a muskrat or a mink or who the hell knows.  But I lived to tell the tale !

It was not a water snake, which I mention because there are a lot of water snakes around but they don’t bother me. If they aren’t poisonous and can’t kill me, I don’t worry about them.  Just shoo them off.  But this was not a snake.

Our site also contained a squirrel nest.  In a tree right beside the fire pit, there was a huge hole and a bunch of baby squirrels.  The mom would leave the tree in the daytime and come back at night.  What also would come out at night were owls.  We had a couple of owls hanging around, trying to capture these babies so they could have a nice dinner.  Kind of sad but that’s nature.  The babies were cute to watch.  They would come out a bit and then dive back in, I think they were unsure what to do and where to go.  Plus they didn’t want to get into trouble with mom.

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Baby checking to see what’s going on
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One of the young
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Mom having a rest
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One of the Baby Squirrel Hunters aka Owl

We also saw lots of waterfowl, including herons.  We love herons, sometimes we sit in our canoe for hours taking photos.

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Just a frog………..

When we were at our site, we would sit and relax.  It became an intersting spot.  Clint noticed this bush with this huge spider nest in it, and the Mom spider.  So gross, for me anyways.  If you don’t like spiders, don’t look at the next two photos and honestly I’m not sure which photo freaks me out more.  I hate spiders.

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Mom Spider
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Nest and look at all the baby spiders, bleh

There is lots to do in this area which is one reason that it’s very popular.  You can do day trips to Galipo River, Welcome Lake, Night Lake, Clydegale Lake and more.  So every morning, early we, as per usual, pack a lunch and head out.  When we got back to our site late afternoon, it was time for a sit on the rock and a nice wine or vodka/orange.

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Evening

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Another year gone and every time I look at these photos I want to go back.  It was hard doing these Throwback Blog Posts because it makes me nostalgic for those times.  I think next year will be the year for a couple more back country trips.  Our summer this year (2019) has been all planned and we have no time but next year………………………Well that’s another story.