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Chi-Cheemaun Ferry, Tobermory

Bruce Peninsula National Park, Fathom Five National Marine Park

rain 14 °C
View TaJ 2019 & TaJ 2019 - The Journey Home on Rooseboom-Scott's travel map.

September 10

We depart Chutes Provincial Park mid-morning, after a cold and rainy night. It rained so hard that TaJ was surrounded by her own little lake in the early hours of the day. Luckily, the campground is on sand and most of the water had drained by the time we started our hook-up. It only takes Jenny and I about 45 minutes from start to finish to have the trailer packed for travel and hooked-up to Sully.

Here is a photo the falls on the Aux Sables River, the site of the chutes that gave the park its name.
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We have a 3:50 reservation for the Chi-Cheemaun Ferry, from South Baymouth, on Manitoulin Island, to Tobermory, on the Bruce Peninsula. It is only about 150 kilometers from the campground at Chutes to the ferry terminal so we have lots of time. We pause in Espinola to do a bit of grocery shopping for our 3 day stay in the Tobermory area. We also stopped at the Little Current Brewery on Manitoulin Island, to stock up on some local beer.

We arrive at the ferry terminal and book in for our trip. The total cost is $184.00 for the two-hour ferry ride. It is now the off-season and rates are much reduced. The Chi-Cheemaun (indigenous for Big Canoe) arrives and we load. There are a large number of Mennonites on board this sailing. They walk on, or travel by bus. None of them that we can see have a vehicle of their own.

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Unfortunately, it is a windy day and Lake Huron is rough so there is limited time spent out on the deck. We pass the historic light-house near Tobermory and there we are, docked and on the road.

We took an RV park here because the weather was still touch and go and we decided it would be better to have full services. The Bruce Peninsula National Park campground does not have electric sites, nor does it have showers.
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We set up, in the rain, once again, and settle in for the night. The roadways in the campground are awash from 3 days of rain. We would surely appreciate a change in the weather.

September 11

After a leisurely breakfast we head back into Tobermory and walk the town. The town charges $3 an hour for parking, with a 3-hour maximum stay. We find the free parking a block or two from downtown and spend the next three hours walking the entire town. We clocked about 5 kilometers. In summer Tobermory has a population of about 3,500, which drops to less than 300 for the winter, which we are told is cold and brutally windy. Most buildings in the town are used as summer rentals. Even the National Park closes at the end of October. It is spectacularly beautiful here.

We checked out the Tobermory Brewing Company as well.
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We witness the release of a Monarch butterfly from the Visitor Center at the Fathom Five National Marine Park. Monarchs are making a comeback here in Ontario and we see a few late caterpillars working the milk weed plants. In about a week or so we will be at Point Pelee National Park, near Leamington to witness the Monarch migration across Lake Erie. Much more on that in the next to last blog entry of this trip. Please note that the butterfly has been tagged.

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We also came across a Monarch caterpillar at the campground. This guy had better hurry up and turn into a butterfly...summer is coming to an end.
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We did a fair amount of hiking here at the National Park, and some of the trails are brutally tough, especially on old guys like me. We did as well as we could though. In total, we got in about 12 kilometers of hiking.

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The beach on Georgian Bay was spectacular.

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Over the next 8 days we will be visiting some friends in Southern Ontario and will the next blog will be from Leamington, in about 10 days time.

Posted by Rooseboom-Scott 14:50 Archived in Canada Tagged monarch_butterfly tobermory bruce_peninsula_national_park chi-cheemaun_ferry

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