So apparently there have been Wood Ducks down at our waterfront. I love Wood Ducks. People I know have been posting photos of them for the last week. Clint and I drove to the waterfront Saturday afternoon to take a look-see.
Reminiscent of our trip to Algonquin last Tuesday, nothing! No Wood Ducks, apparently they headed west about 90 minutes before we got there.
We did see some cute mallard ducks, swans and pigeons! lol
Here are a few of my favourites from yesterday. Oh and lest I forget, seagulls were all over the place. Seagulls in Belleville are like the Red Squirrels in Algonquin Park, numerous and plentiful.
Not too exciting but we will try again to find the elusive Wood Ducks. Here is a photo of one that I saw in Algonquin Park last fall when we were camping there. They are a beautiful duck.
So here we are again, beginning my Blog post with the words…We got up at 0’dark thirty to head to the Park! But we did get up early and were on the road before 530 am this past Tuesday and headed out, ever hopeful to see some wildlife.
To save you from the suspense, we saw a beaver and a crap load of red squirrels…that’s it, that’s all. The Red Squirrels run that place, so many of them. I swear they ran all the other wildlife off, they can be aggressive. I mean, they are cute to watch but still they are not nice. We have one in our backyard that we call Tommy the Terrible. He owns our yard, the other squirrels, twice or more his size take off when Tommy comes out. As do the birds, raccoons, us……we all leave!
The lakes are still frozen but I was surprised there was not as much snow as I thought there would be. Below is a picture of highway 60 going past Mew Lake
Mew Lake, we will be camping here in 7 weeks, hard to believe!
This was such a beautiful day, look at that blue sky in the photo below. I think the temperature got up to 18 Celsius which was amazing. Wonderful weather, we didn’t even need our winter coats, touques, mitts, nothing!
We did do a couple of hikes, Spruce Bog Boardwalk Trail being one of them. This is a nice and short trail going through the forest and also through marsh areas.
One of the trails we like to walk is the trail to the Cascades. We go here quite often, in all seasons. We have also paddled this river and had to portage over the cascades to continue down the river. Today we both wore our spikes, or crampons, on our hiking boots. It was a little icy in spots.
We drove down Opeongo Road a few times but there was not much going on except for ……….Squirrels!
We did finally spot two beavers, one was quite far from us having it’s lunch and the other was closer and hanging out in front of their beaver house. The photo below shows how far away we were. You can see the beaver house out on the ice on the left. He was hanging out in front of there.
Canoe Lake was still frozen. This is a big lake from which we have started a few of our interior canoe trips. We have been up here when they closed down the canoe rentals because of the wind and whitecaps. It can be a nasty lake to paddle.
This Totem Pole is at the Main Gate on the East side of the Park, where we enter. We have a Parks Pass for the year so we don’t have to stop to get a permit.
So that’s that, we most likely won’t get up here again until we are camping in May, hopefully the moose get THAT memo.
You know I post mostly wildlife photos/adventures and landscapes, flowers etc but I also love Beer. I can’t help it, it’s my thing. A friend of mine Lesley B. told me that she knows me well because on Instagram I would only post wildlife photos and photos of Craft breweries! That pretty much describes me and my life.
So here is a token wildlife photo, and then on to one of my favourite breweries, right here in my area where I live.
Did someone say BEER? Yuck………………
We took a drive to Prince Edward County last Friday, or as we in the area call it, The County. I know I have mentioned this place a zillion times before but it’s a pretty awesome island. There are approximately 40 wineries, 10 craft breweries, (that might be higher) cider places, a distillery, one of the best beaches in Canada, at Sandbanks Provincial Park (Formed on the world’s largest baymouth dune barrier formation) (whatever that means, but it sounds impressive).
Now I think I will do the local breweries in separate posts. I am doing this for two reasons, the first being that this post would be super long and who wants to read a super long Blog post? Not me…. And also because we aren’t traveling, I don’t have a lot of new wildlife photos to share. Which is sad…. mostly sad for me. In the meantime, enjoy reading about local breweries.
So on to the breweries …… man I get distracted easily! Or as we say in Canada….Squirrel! (that’s another story)
They are located in Picton (Ontario, Canada) in the Industrial Park. Prince Eddy’s has a great outdoor area including a beach volleyball court, outdoor kitchen and a stage for live music. On their website they state they have a 2 storey tasting room which I did not know and we go there A LOT. They do have a seating area in the main part where the bar is so I will have to be more observant when I go back. It doesn’t mention food on their website but I know in the past they have had Food Trucks there.
I remember the first time we went there, a few years ago now. We decided to share a taster tray, or sampler tray, whatever you call it. They put all these cute little glasses of beer on a skateboard, that was their tray. Problem was, they didn’t take the wheels off the skateboard! I recall sitting at the table and Clint and I batted this thing back and forth so it wouldn’t roll over the edge. Pretty funny. We haven’t sat there to have a beer since the Apocalypse began so now we normally go in, grab some to go beer and head home to drink it.
They have a varied beer selection. Now I love IPA’s, the hoppier the better. Hoppy makes me Happy. My husband prefers Stouts and Porters, preferably barrel aged. He loves their Dark Side BBA (Bourbon Barreled Aged) Imperial Stout made with Coffee, Chocolate & Vanilla. That’s only one of a few Stouts that they have and he likes ’em all. I sent this one – Coco Dojo Imperial Stout with Banana, Coconut, Coffee and Vanilla – to my son in Toronto. He is very excited to try this, I mean come on, Banana? It sounds cool. I love their Hazy Brigade IPA and I like So Many Friends Session NEIPA. They have Blonde ales, Black Lagers, Lagers and their Cream Ale is great and I could go on but I won’t. Suffice to say, hit this one up if you get over there.
They also have Sour beers. My husband’s theory is that a few years ago someone, somewhere, screwed up their vat of beer and decided to market and sell it as something “unique” rather than dump it and lose money. So from that you can gather that we do not like Sour Beer, I mean is it even beer? But that’s my opinion only…….it appears to sell mostly to the young’uns not experienced beer drinkers like us.
We met the owner, Aaron (Erin?) last summer when we were camping at Bon Echo Provincial Park. He and his buddy from Midtown Brewing Company asked if they could walk through our site as a shortcut to their site. We said sure and as they were carrying/drinking cans of beer and we were sitting drinking beer, we struck up a conversation. Now what d’ya suppose we talked about? lol
At Prince Eddy’s the staff are great and the prices reasonable. So check them out!
And as they say on their website, Stay Safe, and Stay Frothy!
Friday morning we got up really early………..why do my Blog Posts always start with that? Anyways up at Oh Dark Thirty again and out the door before 630 a.m.
Drove to the Park and spent some time driving around and we spent a couple of hours hiking some trails. We did see some very shy deer, they were deep in the woods and of course swans and ducks. But that was it, pretty slow day at the park today.
There are some nice trails and we walked a few to get our exercise and see what we could see; which was not much, except for a Pileated Woodpecker and he was pretty far away.
The ice is pretty much gone off the shoreline of Lake Ontario and the trails, for the most part, are snow and ice free. Well, there are a few sections that you have to be careful but it’s not too bad.
This past Tuesday we got up really early, too early for humans, and were in the truck and on our way before 6 a.m. Why? I dunno to be honest. We wanted an early start to go to Amherst Island and we wanted to catch the ferry from the Millhaven Ferry Dock which leaves on the half hour. So we got to the ferry terminal at 650 and yup had to wait until 730 to get across ! It only took us about 45 minutes to drive to the ferry but we did have to stop for gas. Oh well, we bonded while sitting in our truck.
So the ferry to Amherst Island is $9 for our truck, return. It holds a surprising amount of vehicles. We were not allowed to get out of our truck because of Covid but it’s only about a 20 minute run so not bad at all except for some photos I took which are not great. I would like to have gotten better photos of the ferry and the trip because taking photos out a truck window is not ideal.
Amherst Island is in Lake Ontario and just west of Kingston, Ontario. There is a small village named Stella. Every time I hear or see the name Stella I immediately yell it out like Marlon Brando did in the movie Streetcar Named Desire to Kim Hunter’s character. Stellllllaaaaa !
Anyways, moving on…….
I guess Harrowsmith magazine named Stella as one of the prettiest towns in Canada. Yeah I don’t think so, it’s quaint and cute but far from the prettiest.
So after our cool ferry ride, breaking through the ice, we landed on the Island, at the Stella Ferry Dock. This island is chock full of windmills, hawks, deer, wild turkeys and sometimes owls. But we did not see any owls this day.
We saw so many of the above mentioned wildlife and yet most were always so far away.
We also spotted a fox with either a duck or Mourning Dove in his mouth. He ran from the shore of Lake Ontario, across the road in front of our truck and was gone just that quick. I did manage to snap two quick shots out of the truck front window while the truck was still moving. Needless to say they did not make the cut, pretty bad photos but still so cool to see.
There are lots of farms on the island and SHEEP ! I love sheep, they are just so cute.
This little deer was by a farmers barn, maybe he wanted to get in with the sheep.
We drove by a cemetery and sitting by the fence was a cute little deer and two others were behind the fence of the cemetery. Of course he couldn’t stay down, he had to get up and flee. We didn’t even leave our truck.
There are a lot of windmills on the island. I like windmills, a lot of people do not, they find them intrusive. Construction on these ones began late in 2016 and there are about 26 Turbines. I like the look of them and I do not find them noisy. However I do have to say I am not well versed in the pros/cons of having windmills so I will not say anymore on this topic (although I do have some opinions) Are there windmills where you live? How do you feel about them?
As we were leaving to go back to catch the ferry, we were stopped at a Stop sign and I looked to the right and there was a hawk sitting right outside my window on a fence post. So how do ya like that? I was able to get a few shots that turned out okay
Below is us leaving Amherst Island on the ferry, see all the ice on the water. We just went on through it! And the ferry leaves the island every hour on the hour.
After we got off the ferry,we drove about 30 minutes down the road and caught the FREE Glenora ferry over to Prince Edward County. I have written about the County before so I won’t speak again about it here. But …. it’s an island and this ferry is free because they consider this an extension of the Ontario Provincial Highway from Kingston area to The County.
Below is the Glenora Ferry as we are arriving in The County at the docks, we did not go through any ice, the passageway was clear water.
Again we could not leave our vehicles and the ride was maybe 20 minutes. After we got off the ferry we drove maybe 2 minutes up the road to a brewery. The Lake on the Mountains brewery to be exact so we stopped in there to buy some craft beer to take home.
I don’t normally photograph any kind of insect because I am not fond of bugs to be blunt. However, sometimes when we are sitting in our canoe for a very long time (maybe a couple of hours) we do see some great photo opportunities. Now I don’t have a macro lens so I just use what I have, usually my 200mm or my 300mm. A macro lens would be better but we only have one of those lenses between us so we both can’t use it at the same time!
As well as photos of butterflies, bees and others, I also have photos of dragonflies and damselflies. I always these two were one and the same but there are differences. The dragonfly has a bigger body and the wings are to the side when sitting. The damselflies are more slender and their eyes are large and somewhat on the side of their head. I spent more time than I should have trying to figure these guys out and was just getting discouraged. If anyone can tell what types they are please feel free to let me know. Knowledge is a great thing! It was very difficult to try and match up my photos with photos on the web.
I believe the blue Dragonfly below is called the Canada Darner and the other is a female Canada Darner….. or not
So those are some of my unidentified insect photos.