Sunday, 21 July 2013

Camping in bear country

Ah camping, the joy of being able to get away from it all, leave technology behind and enjoy the peace and quiet of nature.  As I type this I'm sitting here listening to the sounds of a chain saw cutting a tree off a tent, but more on that later.

Our trip started off with DH saying he was not taking alcohol on this trip.  I convinced him to at least pack the beers...thank goodness for that, as the first beers were cracked while we were still setting up.

This was a new campground, we were not sure on the sites, but had booked one across from the main beach.  When we got here the site was smaller than we expected, very close to the sites on either side and not much privacy. DH was not overly impressed.  I tried to point out the good things. We were close to the washrooms, which were nice flushing toilets with sinks and soap, not the long drops I was expecting from Algonquin Park. We were close to the beach, our site was nice and level, oh and we had no Internet or cell service...ok now I was not happy, how am I supposed to live without cell service for a week?

It was a great start, a young couple and their large dog moved onto the site next to us and to our immense joy their dog made our monster dog look like an angel. It barked at everything, even throughout the night, it's name was Hudson, we know that as its owners kept saying "oh, Hudson," all day long. Sitting around the camp  fire on the first night DH muttered "shoulda brought alcohol."

Lets move ahead to our first night. Diggle wakes me in the middle of the night, he needs to pee. So I step outside the trailer into our attached tent with him and freeze.  My heart drops, what was that noise I heard? OMG there's a bear outside. I grabbed Diggle and push him behind me, he keeps saying what's wrong mommy? And I'm trying to shush him. I bravely stick my head out the tent with the flashlight in my hand, ready to run back into the trailer at a moments notice, I look around...and realize its the guy on the campsite on the other side of us snoring, no bear, just a middle aged man, snoring...some may rather face down the bear.  

Hudson's parents left after two nights thankfully, and I found I could get my Internet fix when we drove to the camp store for ice creams for the kids...all was good, and yes the kids may have been allowed more ice cream than usual.

We settled into a routine of swimming, canoeing, and doing absolutely nothing. We went to a parks theatre production, it was called Time Machine. They took you back through the ages in the park, it was geared for the kids, and made me question the early loggers sexuality but enough on that.

Mid week we decided to take a trip into town, we needed a few more supplies. We got 3G cell signal on the way there yay! I checked the weather, severe thunderstorm warnings for our area, this should be fun.

As we got back to our trailer our new friendly neighbour came over to tell us that the park rangers had just been around to warn of an impending storm cell that was looking particularly nasty, people were evacuating to ride it out at the Visitors Centre 10km away. DH and I decided we liked our stuff too much, we had a trailer, not just a flimsy tent, we would stay and keep an eye on things. The storm itself was only about 30 minutes, it was intense and at one point had DH and I both ducking when we heard what we thought was a crack of lightening striking a little too close for comfort. We were securing the shelter tarp, DH sent me inside to check on the kids. The kids and monster dog were in the trailer taking shelter, monster dog thankfully can care less about storms, the kids were sobbing, Matthew was praying for just one more day of life (not sure what that means for tomorrow), and Alyssa was trying to be brave but had tears in her eyes and was scared. Thankfully the storm was over a lot quicker than it began, and when we went outside the sun was shining, there were puddles everywhere and the site across the road from us had a huge tree lying across it squashing their dining tent. That crack of lightening we ducked for was actually the tree snapping. Thankfully the family had been sheltering in their other tent at the time. Hence the sound of chainsaws as I started typing this.

It's later in the afternoon now the sound of chainsaws has been replaced by music, they are celebrating being alive, there's a possibility tomorrow they may wish they weren't.