Sunday, August 26, 2007

Lake Superior Circle Tour -- Day 17

WHAT A LUXURY to have a 1 pm checkout time! I cannot strongly enough recommend The Northern Lights Motel in Wawa, Ontario. There were jokes to keep you entertained taped to the back of the bathroom door for when you were conducting bathroom business, complimentary ear plugs, toothpicks, Q-tips, bottled water and a rubber ducky for bath time. When I skipped out to show B.E. the rubber ducky, I noticed that on the bottom was written a note, something to this effect: I like it here, please don't take me with you.

It was hard to depart such a place.

One of the staff recommended a place in town where we could get breakfast all day and we were promptly off for morning (ahem, afternoon) sustenance.

After breakfast, we did a little shopping at the local grocery store and I started noticing a strange trend in Wawa. There were dogs everywhere, unleashed, wandering around town. They didn't seem to be strays -- just pets that accompanied their owners on errands and waited in the parking lots of establishments for the owners to return. What a great town! Dogs were everywhere!

Wawa is known for their gigantic Canada goose. At the visitor center a monstrous goose greets visitors, and many establishments in town have also erected giant geese.

As we made our way out to the goose high on the hilltop, B.E. decided to do some inukshuk impersonations. He'd say, "What's this?" and I'd name the inukshuk.

This is a regular inukshuk.

This is a Vulcan inukshuk.

This is a John Travolta inukshuk.

I was cracking up. It's probably only funny to us though.

Prepare to be goosed!

Were this a real gigantic goose, I'd never have gone to this dangerous end, but how can you resist when it's a big, steel goose?

B.E. stood near the edge of the towering hill reading a plaque about the goose while I stood much farther from danger, admiring the view. And what a view it was!

The grounds were nicely kept with some of my favorites, yellow daisies, adorning the big goose.

From the goose, we visited another of Wawa's must-see attractions: Magpie High Falls. It's a spectacular waterfall, absolutely enormous and a stunning amount of water tumbles over the top each second.

A big, beautiful rainbow glistened in the bright sunlight at the bottom of the falls.

As we were sitting on a bench enjoying the view, I noticed what I thought was a thread on B.E.'s shoulder. Then it moved. OHMYGOD, it was a little worm! So, I filmed it before B.E. set it on the ground.

After spending a while at the falls, we finally left Wawa for our next destination.

We stopped briefly at Old Woman Bay, which is a gorgeous beach hugged by enormous, forested cliffs. Though B.E. found a nice, soft sandy spot to lay down on, my feet couldn't take walking on the hot sand and the sharp rocks, so I went back to the car to get my shoes. B.E. followed me and we decided to leave Old Woman Bay and head south to Katherine Cove.

The view was just spectacular going down Highway 17 along the shoreline. This is what it looks like on most of the Canadian side.

Photo taken by Boyfriend Extraordinaire

At Katherine Cove, I tried to nap because the beach was packed with people and I wasn't feeling so well. Unfortunately, two little chipmunks had other plans for me. They ran all around the car and B.E. fed them parts of his PB&J sandwich until we finally got some bread out specifically for them. They seemed to like it at first, fighting over the crumbs, but then they concentrated more on finding water. I guess bread makes them thirsty too. B.E., always trying to persuade me that his ways are for everyone, tried to feed them some cucumber (bluck). Even the thirsty chipmunks wouldn't eat the cucumber. Hah.

Finally, the crowds seemed to be departing and we ventured down to the shore.

Katherine Cove is one of my favorite places. The rocks are fun to climb on between the sandy areas of the beach and the scenery is just breathtaking.

Here the water varies from shades of blue to green, yellow and red, and the rocks are just as colorful.

The rocks had irregular surfaces, as rocks generally do, and in many areas pools of water accumulated near the shoreline, probably filled with rainfall and wave water. We sat in the shade near a particular pool of water for quite some time before a young boy pointed out that there were 4 frogs in the pool. Sure enough, there they were.

Being a frog lover, I immediately tried to catch one, but they were far too elusive. That's when other folks wandered by and occasionally asked if we managed to catch one of the frogs. Hmm, it appears I was not the only one to try unsuccessfully to catch them.

Given their Houdini-like ability to constantly escape, B.E. made up a song called "Canada's Four Famous Frogs." I can still hear the melody in my head now, and it's just as silly as it was before.

One of the rare (hah!) piping plovers paid the frogs a visit, but when she realized these were Canada's Four Famous Frogs, she flew off for a meal elsewhere.

When it grew late in the afternoon, we sadly parted the area. On the way back to the car we noticed an inukshuk in the sand. Our first beach inukshuk!

Photo taken by Boyfriend Extraordinaire

On the way to Batchawana Bay (hmm, sounds like a song...) we stopped in Pancake Bay at the Agawa Indian Crafts and Canadian Carver gift shops, where there are some of the coolest gift shops around. I had to have spent an hour browsing and buying neat stuff in these shops, then only out of pity for B.E. did I finally agree to leave.

We spent the night in Batchawana Bay at the Voyageur's Lodge. We had a small room that looked out at the lake, where the weather was producing small waves and the cold night air was taking over. We walked the beach briefly and then decided to take a drive around the bay.

What a sad sight. The low lake level has left such a dreary shore on the northern side of the bay that many docks are dilapidated, protruding from dry land, and the water is creeping farther out, away from the old shoreline. It wasn't a nice sight, so we went back to our room.

The lodge had a restaurant, which we were semi-pleased with. The food was decent, the service was okay, but instead of offering napkins to the customers, there were rolls of bathroom paper towels on each of the tables. It was kinda creepy. Probably not the effect they hoped for, but no one else seemed to mind.

We then turned in for our last night in Canada.

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