Day 4 – Sunday, June 28 ( Drive to Thunder Bay)

It was a warm and sunny day most of the day as I drove from Elliott Lake to Thunder Bay. There were a few episodes of rain but nothing significant. The temperature varied from 14 C to 27 C ( 57-80F ) as I drove along the shores of the Great Lakes.

My morning started with an unexpected twist. After I got up, I tried to open my car with my remote and nothing happened. I opened the door with my key, put it in the ignition and, as I suspected, there was no response…not a single noise. Oops! It was at this point that I remembered that I had left the 12V cooler on all night and the battery was now completely dead. It was 7 am, so I decided to make breakfast and start packing until someone came by, so that I could ask for a boost. If not, I would ride my bicycle to the rangers station and ask them for help. Everything went as planned. By the time I had finished breakfast and packed up someone came by and gave me a boost. I finished my packing and I was on the road at 9:30 am, a little later than I had hoped, but I was on my way again.

I enjoy driving the northern highways. The scenery is spectacular, with the rolling hills of rocks covered in evergreen and birch trees and surrounded by endless lakes.

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I was watching the sides of the road for animals, especially since there were so many signs warning drivers to watch out for moose and although I wasn’t expecting it, something caught my eye along the highway that I thought I recognized. Since no one was behind me, I came to a stop along the side of the road, took my camera and crossed the road to get a better look to have my suspicions confirmed. There was a bear not far from the road. It wasn’t until I looked at the picture later that I realized that there were 2 black bears.

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I continued down the winding, rolling roads until I got to Wawa. Its a nice small town with a funny name and I decided to take a break, have lunch and publish my journal from the past 2 days, as well as make some minor adjustments to the first entry.

My destination was the “ Sleeping Giant “ provincial park, east of Thunder Bay and I knew I was going to be late and, since I didn’t have a reservation ( which is normal for me ), I was hoping that they rangers would still be there, however, when I finally got there at 9:30 pm, the rangers station was closed. They had posted a sign for latecomers to get a ticket from the machine to the right of the station, pick a site and return in the morning to pay if you wanted to stay longer. There were plenty of sites to choose from and I picked one close to the showers and the rangers station.

Yes, you read it correctly. They have hot showers. After I set up my tent, I took a nice warm shower to wash off the dirt, grime and the layers of musk oil and Deet, just so that I could start re-appling fresh layers of mosquito repellant. Its a vicious circle. The mosquitos aren’t that bad but its understandably worse than back home. I have very few mosquito bites, but then they don’t love me as much as other people…like Jim Culp! I like having Jim around.. The mosquitos love his aftershave, cologne and rare blood type. Come to think of it, I should have brought Jim along. He would have been better than all the musk oil and Deet for keeping the mosquitos away and if a bear comes around, I know that I can outrun him.

One of the things I noticed as soon as I got close to the campsite, was that there is very little or no cell reception in the area so I would have to wait until I left the area to continue publishing my journal.

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