Road Tripping – Owen Sound and Meaford

Although we love to visit communities of all sizes when we’re out on an adventure, we don’t often make the community the adventure so to speak.

What I mean by that is, we might be hiking or adventuring close by and may stop in an adjacent community for a bite to eat or to put a bit of fuel in the car.

The one thing we rarely do but have done from time to time in the past is “urban hiking.”

One definition of urban hiking I happened to stumble across is this, “Urban hiking might  be defined as, an active walk taken in an urban environment that goes through parks, uses stairwells, crosses intersections, and meanders through the city’s obstacles of life.”

In addition, Lynn likes to shoot every so often, pictures that aren’t normally nature or hiking related. To keep the creative and technical things sharp, she likes to shoot areas or subjects she might not normally spend much time photographing.

Such was the confluence of these two elements in the past few days. An urban hike to photograph something different.

Having a purpose in mind, we simply needed a place.

And what better place, than Owen Sound and Meaford for the day. Just a relatively short hop from the “old homestead” and both being just down the road from the other.

This looks like it was going to work.

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Of the many things we adore about Owen Sound, is its architecture in and around the downtown.

Some shots from here.

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An outstanding feature of the many things that make Meaford a great spot, is the waterfront and harbour area.

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The spookiest tree we’ve ever seen. It was across the road from the harbour and waterfront.

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Urban hiking/walking – is it worth it?

Absolutely it is.

If this type of hike is something that you don’t normally undertake, especially if your exploring time is normally spent out on a trail, having an open mind to what you might discover in my opinion is the best first step. Often larger municipalities have urban walking routes with maps that you might be able to get a local tourist information site.

There are plenty of outdoors types who would never be caught hiking through an urban environment, and I get that. As much as being in nature is to “get away from the noise and busyness of built-up areas”, discovering and seeing new and exciting sights is also part of the mix as well.

So, having an open mind to what might fall across your path, I think, sets a good course for the day. Urban hiking has it’s drawbacks and issues as well. Nevertheless, the same approaches one would apply on a wilderness trail can be applied here. Be aware of your surroundings; don’t head into spots if you’re unsure of. You get the idea.

One of the best aspects of this is, you just might be able to head out in your own backyard for an enjoyable day spent exploring the city you live in. We often live in communities, but never get out and explore what is simply around “the corner.”

Thanks for visiting and hope that you can take an opportunity and explore “the nooks and crannies” in our neighbourhood.

Remember…

 

—  get outdoors; find inspiration; discover yourself  —

 

 

 

Parry Sound – September Sunset

Sunsets – there is something almost ethereal about sunsets. Outside surrounded by the golden, pinkish glow as the sun slowly drops beyond the horizon has a tranquil, while at the same time a majestic reality that requires nothing from us. Being present; to allow ourselves to be rid of our concerns and issues of the day; to be in the moment allowing the glow and warmth of the sky to envelop us; to soothe us; to refresh us; to heal us.

If you haven’t figured it out yet from reading and viewing some of our past blog posts, both Lynn and I really enjoy and revel in capturing sunsets.

A couple of weeks ago, Lynn and I were in Parry Sound during the day and I remarked to her that I thought along the waterfront could have the potential for great sunsets.

In addition, the waterfront in Parry Sound offers up a ton of other great opportunities as well including The Rotary and Algonquin Regiment Waterfront Fitness Trail(“The Fitness Trail”) restaurants, a fantastic marina, The Stockey Centre and Waubuno Beach. Waubuno Beach is a “Blue Flag Certified Beach.” Blue Flag is a highly respected and recognized international eco-label. They are awarded to beaches and marinas that meet strict criteria for water quality, environmental education, environmental management, and safety and services. Blue Flags are flying at 27 beaches in Canada.

Having had rain and overcast skies for a couple of Saturday’s in a row, kind of put the brakes on making the trip north. As such, both of us were more than eager to head on up on a Saturday night to just see how good the sunsets might be.

Saturday, September 8 turned out to be perfect. The weather forecast predicted a clear sky and a sunset of around 7:45pm. After getting home from work around 5:30pm, we put Katie in the car, grabbed a couple of bottles of water and dog kibble for the pooch and off we headed north on Highway 400 for the 1-hour drive north to Parry Sound.

Arriving in there around 7:00pm, we headed to Waubuno Beach just as the sun was starting to set.

We hiked on over to the north end of the beach area near where some playground equipment is located. There is a small wooden bridge connected to a rocky outcropping that projects out into the water providing the perfect spot for the evening.

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Some pictures from our evening.

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Photo: Glen McKenzie

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Photo: Glen McKenzie
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Photo: Glen McKenzie
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Summer is “officially” over when the lifeguard chair is turned over

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A short video clip of our time along the waterfront.

After the sun dipped below the horizon and Lynn capturing a final few shots of the golden hew of the horizon, we packed Katie back in the car and headed off for a bite to eat before heading home.

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In a nutshell, what a fantastic evening. Waubuno Beach was the perfect spot to capture what we had set out to do. Parry Sound is so close for us. An hour in the car from our driveway put is in the parking lot at the waterfront. Honestly, it doesn’t get any better than that for an easy evening out.

Parry Sound is a great spot to check out. Whether it be for sunsets, recreational activities or perhaps a vacation, you’ll have plenty of superior choices.

Here’s a couple of links that might be worth giving a click on.

Tourism Parry Sound

Town of Parry Sound

Explorers’ Edge

Thanks for reading!

 

A Winter’s Afternoon In Thornbury

It has been a week or two since we’ve been on a hard packed trail or knee-deep in snow hiking to one of our favourite spots somewhere in the Beaver Valley or in North Muskoka, or anywhere for that matter. Life and its day-to-day happenings which always get in the way of outdoor pursuits, well they seemed to keep getting in the way. Although, we did manage to hit up Huntsville, ON for the Banff Mountain Film Festival back on January 24th. That ended up being one pretty awesome evening at the Algonquin Theatre.

Last Friday, we headed over to Collingwood to meet with a young lady who is purchasing this particular photo that Lynn captured last year. The picture, which I think is mighty spectacular, ended up being the winner of the “Experience Collingwood’s” 2017 photography competition.

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To our shock and somewhat pleasant surprise, the lady has decorated and designed her living room with the concept that this photograph will become its centre-piece. Making a long story short we’re looking at creating three-panel photo totalling 60 inches long by 20 inches in height.

So, after finishing up in Collingwood, we decided to head on over to Thornbury and Meaford to hike and explore the waterfront.

A few pictures from the afternoon.

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Frozen waterfront of Georgian Bay
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Patiently waiting for a mid-summer night’s sunset
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Foggy ski hills in the background
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Waiting for another summer’s evening
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Where “old fishing lures” go to retire
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Old Railway Bridge – Georgian Trail Thornbury
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Old Railway Bridge – Georgian Trail Thornbury
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Old Railway Bridge – Georgian Trail Thornbury

So, when life got in the way and to keep sanity or insanity levels to something manageable, an afternoon hiking along the Georgian Bay waterfront did the trick. And life does get in the way. It gets in the way for all of us. And when it does, getting outside to give ourselves a much-needed mental health break and body re-fueling at times requires being diligent, determined and focused. For many people taking an afternoon to hike a few kilometres on the Bruce Trail or spend a couple of hours walking along something like the Georgian Trail would be unthinkable. We all know that someone who needs every waking hour to be productive with some sort of measurable results or else their day seems wasted.

Nevertheless, warm temperatures, a sun that filled the sky and few hours outside made the world of difference.

Every outing doesn’t have to or need to be an epic adventure worthy of being on the National Geographic channel. Nope, sometimes they just need to be ………………………an outing.

Thanks for reading.