Saturday we took in a number of the Winter in the Wild activities. The first was a great talk by one of the park staff about bears. He talked about bears, their habitat, their habits, etc. but he also talked about the research going on in the park about the bears. He showed some amazing pictures showing how the park staff attach collars to the bears so they can be studied. Listening to the talk make me wish I was a biologist so that I could do some of this cool sounding research.
Following the talk we had lunch in the Visitor Centre and checked out the viewing platform. It was a great view. There were a huge number of evening grosbeaks enjoying the bird feeders. We also saw some woodpeckers, nuthatches, chickadees and ravens.
|View from the Visitor Centre|
|One of the Spruce Bog|
After checking out the accommodations we headed to the BBQ hosted by Friends Of Algonquin Park. We bought some burgers and hot dogs then made our way to the campfire to eat and roast marshmallows. It had been an action packed day and the youngest among us were exhausted so we skipped the fireside talk and night hike (hopefully we'll make it next time). Instead we headed made our way back to our lodging.
When we got back to our room we began talking about what the next day might look like. We all decided that it would be best to ski in the morning before the snow got too slushy (the forecast high was 9°C). The plan was to ski the Leaf Lake Trail, get an early start, ski to Dee's cabin for lunch and then ski back. Once the kids were in bed it occurred to me that I didn't remember seeing the ski boots in our room. I went and checked the van but they weren't there either. I would have to wait until morning to do a thorough search of our room, but I was feeling pretty confident that we had left the boots at home. Sure enough that's exactly what happened. I was very disappointed at myself for forgetting the boots but eventually realized that it just meant we'd have to come back next year.
Needless to say we changed the plan. We opted to skate at the Mew Lake rink in the morning since the ice was likely to be slushy later in the day. We had a great time. It wasn't very crowded, everyone we did see was very friendly. Our kids were laughing, giggling and just having a great time.
|Super Excited to be Skating|
|Round and Round She Goes|
|Lunch by the Fire|
|Gray Jay Enjoying a Snack|
On our final day we packed up and decided to snowshoe the Logging Museum Trial. What a great trail. There was a lot to see and tons of information about logging in the area. We will have to return in the summer to see the museum itself and the displays that are not accessible in the winter. The weather was great, though the temperature was much more seasonal with a bit of a breeze. There were a ton of chickadees around the parking lot so we gave them a snack before we headed out. Some of us decided to snowshoe along the well worn path and others decided to walk (or on occasion run) the path.
|Checking Out Giant Woodpecker Holes|
|Small Lake Along the Trail|
|Alligator Paddle Wheel|
|Checking Out the Alligator|
|Friendly, Feathered and a Bit Heavy|
|Seasonal Bird Feeder|
We built a snowman and left some seeds for the chickadees. Then we packed up and headed for home. We had such an amazing weekend. The weather was outstanding and it was great to be able to spend most of the weekend outside. We will certainly be back...hopefully in a tent of some sort.