August 25th – September 18th
After hanging out at Naturally Superior for a few days, Gabrielle and Pascal headed south on the east shore of Lake Superior to Lake Superior Provincial Park. The plan was to take their time, just enjoy hanging out on the lake and see the sights since Pascal had rushed by them when he had originally paddled by in June. Even though the boat was heavier with an extra person and gear, Pascal was so happy to have a close friend for company. The novelty of paddling alone was starting to wear thin. Plus he was suffering from a sore shoulder which was not improving despite specific exercises and anti-inflammatories. So having another paddler on board was a bonus. They bought some fish along the way which was a nice addition to their dehydrated food.
After saying good-bye to Lake Superior they spent a day in Sault Ste Marie where they picked up some supplies at the Post Office (warm clothes for Gabrielle since it was a lot colder than she thought it would be in the evenings and at night) and treated them selves to some real food (not dehydrated!). Then they paddled off again but on Lake Huron.
In fact food became a main topic of conversation and finding good food, lots of it, became a goal for the duo. Pascal remembered having a yummy dinner at the restaurant at the Lakeview Motel in Blind River on May 28th when he first headed off solo. So the pair headed off for there where had lunch which consisted of fish and chips, a few sundaes and another dessert. It was excellent but heavy so they spent the rest of the day in Blind river, just to digest and rest. Their next goal was to try the fish and chips at Hebert’s in Killarney, Wild Ravens Adventure’s favourite pick…. According to Gabrielle and Pascal, Lakeview is winning the taste test so far.
The path led them up the French River, against the current, something Pascal had been dreading from his experience paddling downstream in high waters in May. Despite all the portages (the did 6 on one day) all went well. They took 2 days off about half way up the river just to enjoy a lovely campsite they had found (and to make up for not being able to get a ride to a party in Gatineau they really had wanted to go to). Once onto Lake Nipissing, there was very little wind so they did some large crossings across bays very easily and quickly and reached North Bay by early afternoon on September 18th. Their goal was to find an “all you can eat” restaurant which they finally did at JT Sushi on Lakeshore Drive. They also bought lots of fresh food for the remainder of the trip. Looks like dehydrated for is no longer on the menu. They were really lucky to get a lift to the Mattawa River but both their cell phones died that evening so they spent the next day in North Bay getting those fixed. Luckily for Pascal it was just a cable that needed replacing but Gabrielle’s phone had got too much water in it so she had to wait to get home to get it dried out or fixed.
But from here on in it was downhill, woops, downstream all the way to Ottawa with a few portages around rapids on the Mattawa River and a few rapids but mainly hydro dams on the Ottawa River. The end is in sight!