Bon Echo: Beaches and Bugs

The incredible cliff at Bon Echo
The incredible cliff at Bon Echo

It was a recovery and preparation week for camping at Bon Echo. Bdot did pretty much everything as I was restricted to not lift anything more than 15lbs. Hmmpt. Which mean you can do pretty much nothing when it comes to camping gear. We were mostly packed by Wednesday and left Thursday. As usual, we grossly overpacked, the car couldn’t fit a loaf of bread when we finally left. It was a pretty long drive to Bon Echo Provincial Park, near home for Bdot. We arrived to a massive parade of Blackflies that followed the car all the way to our site in Hardwood. This was our first visit to Bon Echo – we pretty had to take the site that was available. We weren’t aware that Hardwood is basically a separate section from the main camping area at Bon Echo. It was a long bumping drive to our site. We were oddly the only campers in our loop the first, delightfully quiet night. Now back to the bugs… good lord, the bugs… yes, of course, I expect mosquitos and blackflies when I camp. But I don’t expect them to be UNRELENTING FOR HOURS on end. We probably would have left Friday if bdot hadn’t packed the screened dining tent. It was a life saver for sure. The other craptastic thing we discovered late, was that a fire ban was in place. So no evening fires, no roasting marshmallows and no cooking over coals. That turned out to be hugely disappointing. The itself was quite nice: Tall trees, and massive roads were strewn about qith ample space for all our gear.
Bdot power engaged!
Bdot power engaged!

Friday we had an incredible day canoeing on massive Mazinaw Lake. All along one side of the lake were incredible tall cliffs (see above). Some of the cliffs had faded Indigenous pictographs which were pretty cool to see up close. After the canoe voyage, we ventured out of the park for ice. We found a great store that had all the stuff we were looking for called The Maz. Bdot is looking for a Stand Up Paddleboard and the owner answered a bazillion of her questions about them. We had a nice chat with owner about dogs while enjoying some Kawartha Dairy Ice Cream. Black Raspberry Thunder. OMG. A great store – highly recommended if you need anything while camping at Bon Echo.
Unfortunately, as we expected, the sites around us filled in Friday night. They filled in with noisy, selfish campers. It was supposed to be a radio free zone. NOPE. It was supposed to be a fire ban. NOPE. It was supposed to quiet after 11AM. NOPE. 12? NOPE. 1AM NOPE. 2??? NO. 3!!!? Finally. Yes these drunken assholes kept me up all night long, screaming, yelling and noise noise noise. I don’t care if I sound like an old get-off-my-lawn bastard, the noise was ridiculous. Where the hell were the park patrols?? We saw them three times the night before, but when they were actual laws to enforce – nothing. That soured my opinion of Bon Echo greatly. It should be a family friendly park not a nightclub. I get having a few beers and a good time but carrying on like teenagers at Spring Break in Florida should be unacceptable at a Provincial Park. Grrr…..
We slept in late due to the lack of sleep. Saturday we spent more of the day at the main beach. There was a nice breeze so it was pretty chill. We made the mistake trying one of the trails. MY GOD. What a mistake. I don’t know why we didn’t turn around but we didn’t. We literally jogged the 1km loop attacked by mosquitos and blackflies THE ENTIRE TIME. It will henceforth be known as the 2nd worst hike ever. (Yes, Cold Creek was still worse) If that wasn’t enough, we followed the road presumably home and not the path. Well, we have no idea where the road was going but it wasn’t back to the beach. So in the baking Sun, still being bombarded non-stop by insects we were getting pretty pissed off. Fortunately, we eventually found a trail that connected us back to the beach area. By this time, however, we were spitting daggers. We contemplated another miserable night of noise and opted just to pack up and return home. There were certainly some good aspects to Bon Echo, but there was also some substantial downs as well.
Our good camping/canoeing dog. (Most of the time) Finally defeated.
Our good camping/canoeing dog. (Most of the time) Finally defeated.

I finished another Potter book while at Bon Echo. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. The books continue to be enthralling.

The World Cup final was mildly disappointing. Sadly the key play was a judgment call made with VAR. I didn’t think it was conclusive either way. After the PK Croatia had to gamble and it resulted in odd man rushes against them that France capitalized on. I think Croatia played a better overall game but France was better at taking advantage of what few chances they had. Ultimately, I don’t mind the France win, it is better than a roll-around-on-the-ground nation. *cough* *Brazil* *cough* *Columbia* I was surprised Russia held such a trouble free games. I was expecting a lot of Putin-esque BS.

Ba-ZING-a should be illegal.

Watched Vietnam War: Ken Burns. Excellent documentary.

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