Having spent the past few days in Sault Ste Marie generally feeling frustrated and sorry for ourselves while dealing with the collapse of our plans for trekking the land segments around Lake Superior we forgot that in its own time, ‘the way provides’.
Yesterday, tired of motels and busy downtown centres we ventured 20 km along the Great Trail around Sault Ste Marie and then 10 km to the local KOA campground. Given that we made these plans in rush we forgot to account for the weather. As a result we spent from 10 am onward in the pouring rain traversing the long way around town and arrived to the campground just in time to avoid the complete deluge that set into the region in the evening.
During the storm yesterday evening we met a very nice Indian couple and their young children who are also camping here, and they invited us on a road trip up of Agawa Bay today. Since we are still very disappointed about not being able to hike the Lake Superior Coastal Trail, we jumped at the chance to at least revisit Lake Superior Provincial Park. The Way Provided.
Thankfully this morning the storm front passed! The rain stopped, the clouds parted, and blue skies appeared! The Way Provided.
We covered the 130 km to the park, which would have taken us about a 5 days to cover on foot, in a mere 1.5 hours – which is both exciting and a little depressing. Getting our first glimpse of Lake Superior was very exciting! The expanse of grey, choppy waves stretched out to the horizon under a sky dark with clouds that were racing along on the wind.
Lake Superior is the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area, and the third largest lake by volume. It is bordered by Ontario, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. The Ojibwe name for the lake is 'gichi-gami' which means 'great sea.' Indeed, the lake behaves as though it is an inland ocean.
Lake Superior Provincial Park is one of the largest provincial parks in Ontario, covering around 1,500 square kilometers of land along the shores of Lake Superior. When it was established in 1944 it was accessibly only from the water, but now the Trans Canada Highway runs through the middle of it.
This park offers spectacular and diverse scenery, consisting of steep rocky cliffs, sandy and pebbled beaches, lush, forested river valleys, roaring waterfalls, and numerous inland lakes. There are several front country campgrounds located within park (all currently booked solid), and the park offers world-class hiking and paddling opportunities along the picturesque coastline.
While the plan had been to travel to Wawa for dinner and to visit the famous Goose, with the skies still clear the decision was soon made to stay in the park and enjoy a picnic at the side of our guest’s RV while enjoying the sunset at one of the park beaches!
What occurred next amid dining on amazing fresh and warm pita bread, enjoying a flavor filled lemon couscous salad with homemade / RV made falafels was a show unlike any we have seen before. Lake Superior, its coastlines, its waters, its beaches and even the clouds in the sky were lit up in a vibrant show.
If our original itinerary had proceeded as designed we would never have met this amazing family, had this incredible day, or seen such sights. All of this arose from the collapse of our itinerary, the fierceness of a storm, and the chance meeting of these kind souls whose campsite was next to ours last night. The Way Provides.
With the night sky setting in and clouds building again we all piled back into the RV for the drive back to Sault Ste Marie and to the KOA campground for the evening. The drive was short, the RV warmed us from the evening chill, and we dozed as opur hosts navigated the route.
What an amazing day. The Way Provides.
Tomorrow we wait for the day in Sault Ste Marie before getting on the Ontario Northland bus at 10:30 pm to get to Marathon by 3:30 am so that we can trek the local segment of the Great Trail which spans from the community of Marathon to the gates of Pukaskwa National Park
With no set plans, we are now piecing this together day by day. Rather than forcing this trek, its time to let the Trail show us the Way.