Day 3: Muskeg, a beaver crossing the road, and a plague of frogs

The black flies of Northern Ontario will eat you through your jeans.

But that’s the end of day 3, let’s start this story at the beginning.

We woke up at Pancake Bay Provincial Park, which is spectacular!

First, breakfast.

Camping breakfast

Then swimming in Lake Superior. It was cold, but Pacific Ocean cold, not glacier stream cold. My kids had never been to a real beach before and they loved it.

Swimming in Lake Superior
Playing on the beach

Then we set off for the Canadian Shield.

Heading north

We made our last major stop at Wawa, or as their signage says, “Wawa Wow!”

The giant Wawa goose
Mining display in Wawa
Hmmm. What’s that up ahead?

We had a long way to drive and we needed to make good time. But as soon as we hit the muskeg we hit a torrential downpour, then fog, then a beaver crossing the road. There were some delays.


We eventually got past Thunder Bay, then on to Ignace and the Sandbar Lake Provincial Park.

This park was pretty and very quiet. We set up the tent about 10 m from the lake in the drizzle.

The thing about camping by wetlands in the Boreal forest after a rainstorm is that the rain is followed by a plague of frogs. There were two types, the regular brown kind, and spring peeper tree frogs. They were everywhere.

There was one casualty, but I’ve refrained from posting photos until the next of kin are notified.

One of very many frogs

Also there were black flies. They bit right through my jeans. Ouch. Many parts of me are still sore.

Sunset at Sandbar Lake

Two reasons to keep the tent zipped up tight. The sunset was great though. And we fell asleep to the sounds of a pair of loons singing to each other.

You’ll have to imagine loons singing in the background

Some stats:

  • Helicopter landings viewed: 2
  • Giant goose: 1
  • “Wawa wow” signs: too many to count
  • Baby deer in the Boreal forest: 1
  • Eagles: 2
  • Falcon: 1
  • Beaver crossing the road: 1
  • Frogs: an infinite number
  • Singing loons: 2
  • Underground mines: 1
  • Total distance: 2059 km

4 thoughts on “Day 3: Muskeg, a beaver crossing the road, and a plague of frogs

  1. Awesome pictures. I did that trek by myself decades ago and have to say I beetled as fast as possible from Sudbury to Calgary, stopping only for gas, sleep, and Big Mac. And collected a few critters on the front grill of my car. But enjoy. Maybe with more DEET. At least it’s summer, the permafrost is kinda melted; could be worse. Like “snow” worse.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad there aren’t REALLY an infinite number of frogs. The universe would be made of just frogs, and they’d collapse under their own weight, provoking the entire Universe to come together in a Big Crunch, thus ending all existence as we know it. Infinite frogs == bad news.

    Liked by 1 person

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