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  • Writer's pictureHeather Cardle

#FrameItFriday (week 40, season 3)

#FrameItFriday (week 40, season 3)

Just to reiterate.... "I'm filling up my blog with Fall stuff until I can tell you my surprise in a few weeks time or maybe sooner. Not sure when, but soonerish."

How about a quick Fall story then eh? About 4 years ago I did a very rare road trip with my daughter Shannon up to Algonquin Park. If I checked (which I can't be bothered, sorry lol) I do believe it was around this time. Just before Thanksgiving. We chose to tackle the Track and Tower trail. As memory serves me correct, it's about a 7km trek. We were down for that. We had consumed a large breakfast that morning so decided at the trail head that we'd leave our lunch in the cooler in the car for when we returned (which I had estimated about a 3.5hr hike). The fall colours were absolutely stunning, the day was gorgeous and sunny and the temp was just perfect. It was mid week so the trails weren't very busy at all.

Being so inexperienced and a complete brainless twit I made the oddest of decision to leave our drinks in the cooler as well. The Track and Tower Trail is like any trail really. It's windy, rooty, rocky, in some places mucky but the scenery more than makes up for it. We had been told there was a lookout about 1/2 way through the hike so that was our motivation because most of the trail winds through the forest and alongside some streams and tiny lakes and ponds.

I'm not gonna lie, I was feeling the burn on my legs after about an hour. Don't get me wrong, it felt AMAZING to be out in the wilderness in the company of my daughter who patiently waited for me to hunt and peck my way over gnarly roots and slippery rocks. Finally, we made it to the part of the trail that lead to the lookout. It was 150-200 steps up to it. At this point, poor out of shape me asked hikers descending the staircase....."what's up there? is it worth the climb?" Seriously, I asked that like a dumb ass. Their reply was "oh ya, it's beautiful and so, so worth it!" My daughter said, "let's go!" so up we climbed with me stopping occasionally to catch my breath until we reached the peak and oh my god....WHAT an incredible view (they didn't lie). Imagine stepping out of the forest and on to an expansive rock ledge with what feels like the entire park's treetops in all of their blazing glory laid out before your eyes. Yes, it was so worth the steps.

HIkers were seated about, nibbling on granola bars, sipping from water bottles and me there with my camera and my daughter wiping the sweat off her brow. Suddenly the bright idea I'd had about leaving our drinks and lunch behind didn't feel like such a great one. The only saving grace was that we were just over 1/2 way back to the car so we could survive until then....unless you're me. The whole hike back I focussed on how I'd drink that strawberry/banana juice box in less than a second. I played that tape over and over and over in my mind ALL THE WAY back to the car. Right down to me ripping the plastic sleeve off the straw from the juice box. At one point I drank from a clear stream, I didn't care if I died, I needed water, I was so, so thirsty. It took forever to get back to the car, I was seeing the highway through the trees and cars whizzing by from miles away from the trail exit. Yes, I guess I was hallucinating and was seeing a highway mirage. As we were about to exit the trail, a young couple nicely dressed with the whitest of tennis shoes, zero sweat, Starbucks cups in hand asked us "is it a long hike? and what do you see?" I said they'd probably best to take their unblemished shoes further down the road to short lookout although I was tempted to say "oh for you young guys it will be a cakewalk, go for it" but I was nice and decent and kept that idea to myself.

It was the first time for us both to witness the splendour of fall in all it's glory up there in Algonquin. I will never forget it. I have to skip it this year unfortunately until perhaps next year, on a weekday, with plenty of water to drink, my daughter and I will return and do that hike.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it. I hope you enjoyed it and the picture of the leaf in the water. I have to look for those lookout photos I took and post them here. Have a great and safe weekend!

Peace, love and kumbaya Heather

P.S.-Absolutely zero fact checking was done on the accuracy of this blog.

#PhotoBlog #LeafStory #FallinAlgonquin #AlgonquinPark #TrackandTowerTrail #Hiking #Stairclimbing #BePrepared #WaterBottle #KeepHydrated #HeatherCardlePhotographer

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