I made quick work of packing up, and the guys were soon up packing up their own things.
They wanted to go swimming (again!), and I opted to hike the loop trail I'd seen in the park. The trail goes up along the creek which feeds the swimming hole.
There are frequent waterfalls and cascades along the trail.
When I returned, Ken and Brian were waiting for me. They had decided not to go swimming.
Brian and I wanted to see the small town museum nearby. $3 entry. Ken decided to wait outside. He's not much of a museum guy.
Inside was a hodgepodge of local artifacts.
I proposed another geocache search up the road, but neither Ken nor Brian were interested. We agreed to meet farther ahead where they were planning to stop to meet a friend. The geocache was hidden along a small access road which parallelled a massive wooden pipeline. I tried to determine what the pipeline was for, but I have no idea. I'm fairly sure it transports water, but to where? From where? Why?
At least I think that's where it was hidden. I never did find the cache. I tried to make a shortcut on a primitive road and ran into missing bridge.
I struggled to traverse the rough trail and had to turn back. Brian and Ken would probably not have been too impressed, so I was a bit relieved that I didn't lead them here.
I caught up with them at Mississaugi park about an hour later.
Brian is a former provincial park employee and knew a couple of the workers here, Mitch and Tamara.
See the police tape behind us? They day before, a severed human foot had been found floating in the lake and the police were doing a search to find the rest of the remains. I learned a few days later that they did find a body in the lake, but as far as I know, it has yet to be identified: http://www.thesudburystar.com/2012/0...-be-identified
And then this bizarre coincidence. I was reading a friend's Facebook the next day, and he mentioned the severed foot.
Turns out, he and I were making opposite direction loops up through Ontario and had no idea of each other's plans. It's pretty likely that we passed each other on the road. Matt also commented on the criminal cost of Canadian campgrounds.
After the park, I headed toward Chapleau while Brian and Ken were planning to see a friend in Elliot Lake. We'd all had a great time riding together, and we shook hands and went opposite directions.
It was here where I finally found the remote wilderness I'd been waiting to see.
I headed west on 546 and then north on 129. "Highway 129 is one of the most isolated in Ontario and among the least-used of the King's Highways," according to Wikipedia. The road surface varied from very good to gravelly.
And then just before Chapleau, the continental divide.
I arrived at Rick and Tuija's house in Chapleau, who I contacted through the Tent Space map, just in time for dinner and then an after dinner drink. Looks like they were anticipating my arrival.
Before bed, Rick showed me how to take a proper Finnish bath in the sauna. Hint: it involves cold beer and hot steam. Felt absolutely wonderful.