Back in September, my husband and I embarked on my longest (time and distance) backpacking trip ever; 6 days, 5 nights, and 40 miles in Killarney Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada. Below was our itinerary if you’re interested:
Day 1: 7 Miles to H16 – Part of Threenarrows Lake
Day 2: 8.4 Miles to H22 – Unnamed Lake
Day 3: 4 Miles to H33 – Little Mountain Lake
Day 4: 6.6 Miles to H38 – Silver Lake
Day 5: 6 Miles to H48 – Proulx Lake
Day 6: 7 Miles out to the George Lake campground
The day before we hit the trail we drove from Ann Arbor through Port Huron to Sarnia and then on to the village of Killarney with a stop in Pleasant Ridge for breakfast at Mae’s. We stayed the night at the Killarney Mountain Lodge. Included in our stay was breakfast and we could have opted to have dinner there as well, but we tried The Pines Inn instead (good burgers!). Our room at the Lodge was basic, but adequate, but the real stunner was their Carousel Lounge, a blast from the past bar with an awesome fireplace, comfy retro furniture, and lots of vintage cocktails. It was great!
We hit the trail after parking our car near where we would exit the woods at the end of our trip knowing we’d mind the extra walking less at the beginning of our trip. I’m not going to lie, the terrain was rough, rougher than we expected. While during our training we averaged 2 miles per hour with fully loaded packs, our pace on the “real” trail was more like 1 mile per hour so it was like all of our days were doubled. While the hiking was difficult, the scenery was beautiful. Killarney’s mountains are made up of pink granite and white quartz with lots of pine trees, streams, lakes, and small waterfalls, which made for some stunning views…
The first three days of hiking were the hardest. We got into camp later than we would have liked and on the third day it rained for most of the day, making the rocks very slippery and slow going. However, the fourth and fifth days went really well. We knew what to expect with the terrain and our pace and we actually got into camp early enough to enjoy it! I finally cracked open my book that I had been lugging along with me (Clash of Kings, it’s a heavy one!) and I even went swimming on our last night. The lake was crystal clear, like the water in the Caribbean, though definitely no where near as warm.
Even the hike out was difficult, with “The Crack” to tackle, but we made it. “The Crack” can be described as a big rock slide of boulders that we climbed down, lots of day hikers climb up it and then turn back around and climb down it. Photos couldn’t really do it justice. Overall it was a difficult trip, but I’m really proud of ourselves for tackling the challenge. I was really surprised at what I was able to accomplish. And that first shower after getting out of the woods was just pure heaven.