Monday, October 15, 2012

PAD3O Algonquin Park Canoe Trip - OCT. 10-13

The grade 11's headed to Algonquin Park last week for their 4-day Fall canoe trip. We were welcomed by Fall, if not Winter. These were the first days this Fall that the temperatures were not summer like. Despite this, we had a great trip.

The nice thing about tripping in the Fall is that the temperatures are crisp, the sun provides great heat, the colours on the trees are pretty special and no one else is in the park. This was obvious when the office at the entrance of the park was surprisingly closed and the gate to Achray was also closed, forcing us to portage 1 km just to put the canoes in the water on Grand Lake. It was all worth it, as by the time we put in, the rain had stopped and the sun had come out. The group made quick work of the only portage of the day and we were at our campsites on Stratton Lake in no time.

This was the largest group I have ever taken on a trip at once, which meant we had to spread ourselves over 4 campsites. We decided on a beautiful, but windy, site on the point at the end of Stratton Lake and then a few sites tucked into the bay sheltered from the wind. The groups settled in quickly, setting up tents, wind blocks, rebuilding fire pits and making dinners. The group had split up into two cooking groups to be able to manage cooking for the 33 people on the trip.

The sheltered sites were perfect, especially in the morning when the sun came up and warmed things up amazingly. We really got to recognize this day that the temperatures had dropped significantly from the week before and when the sun was out, it was nice, but when not, it was chilly. It was a good thing students had mitts, hats, good sleeping bags and collected plenty of firewood to keep themselves warm. The 2nd day was spent at the same campsites, allowing groups to ensure that their camps were set for the rain that was predicted in the evening. Tarps were hung, wind blocks were perfected, fire pits and seating adjusted, and the firewood was covered. Once we had lunch, it was time to go play at the water slides at High Falls and despite the cool temperatures, the majority of the students took a turn going down the slides.

Upon return to the campsites, the rain started and this would be status quo for the remainder of the evening. It rained quite heavily at times, but with the great tarp structures, we didn't really notice. Many of the students were also keen to play a game of manhunt and challenge themselves to walk between the sites without using flashlights. The next morning, we were once again greeted by a wonderful sun that allowed us to dry out some things while we packed up and had breakfast. The other surprise we got his day was the first snow of the year. Throughout the day we saw a bit of flurry activity mixed with sunshine. This was better than rain, although it was really unexpected.

On the 3rd day we headed across 4 portages to Opalescent Lake. We had a bit of a slow start, so we decided to stop on High Falls Lake for lunch. We found a campsite and collected enough firewood to make a nice soup and allow us to toast our wraps and pizza bagels. Opalescent is a pretty special lake with great campsites. Before we headed to our campsites, we ensured we had enough firewood for everyone, which was key, as the temperatures on this night would drop down to about -5 Celsius. The tents were iced over, cups with water left in them had a layer of ice in the morning, but this also provided us with a spectacular morning as the sun shone beautifully through the fog created above the water.

The final day really showed how much the group had grown over the 4 days. The last day would be our longest day and everyone was on the water by 8:15 am, ready for our longest paddle and 4 solid portages. The trip this day took 4 hours, as we made our way across the longest portage (760 m) and through the Barron Canyon with it's 90 m high cliffs. As we made our way to the bus, I have to commend the students on this trip, we may have been the largest group on a CW Outdoor Ed trip, but it didn't feel like we were the largest trip. This shows that the students really pulled their weight and did a great job.


PHILosopher said...

This canoe trip was definitely one of the best outdoor experiences that I've ever had. I think that a lot was learned on this trip, especially from mistakes. I certainly learned many things. First of all, where not to get in a canoe. On the portage before our second lunch, everyone was trying to hurry things up. In trying to get out faster, I ended up in the water. After I changed my clothes, everything was actually warmer than I thought it would be. On a trip, everyone depends on each other, be it for cooking, carrying packs and canoes, or just lending a hand. I think that everyone on the trip helped in some way, and didn't really feel left out.

My view towards a lot of things changed on this trip. For example, tables. Even on the Frontenac hiking trip last year, we had nice, big tables to prepare food and to sit at to eat, and to put things on. We didn't have the same luxury on this trip, and it really made me think of what else we took for granted. Also, it's kind of funny how in the comfort of our own homes, we have dressers and closets to hold all of our clothes, but we can fit everything we need for more than three days in small barrels.

In conclusion, this trip was loads of fun, and I hope that everyone had a great time. I certainly did.

Noah Johnson said...

Part 1
On the 10th of October 2012, the PAD3O outdoor-ed class disembarked from the school and left for Algonquin Park. The canoe trip would prove to be a great adventure and a learning experience filled with both fun and challenge.
The first task involved rallying the students so we could get the gear on the bus. Many of the packs were heavy, so this meant that we relied on teamwork to get the bud loaded in time. Prior to this, we had spent much time preparing for the trip by creating recipes and meal plans, packing and organising ourselves into groups. Because we had planned everything, the gear was loaded onto the bus and we were ready to leave in a short amount of time.
After a bus ride, we arrived at the park to discover that the gate to Achray campground was closed. This was disconcerting because we knew we would have to carry all of our gear and the canoes around 1km to the first lake. This experience made us come together and help each other out because not everyone could handle all the gear. It was also good practise for the many portages that still awaited us in the future. After we got to the starting point, the idea that hard work pays off was clearly demonstrated. I felt satisfied that the worst portage of the day was behind me and I looked forward to getting to the camp.
From the first lake, we loaded up our canoes and set out for the first camping spot. At first we were somewhat rusty, but I quickly became accustomed to the canoe within minutes. I enjoyed being out on the water because it was much better than carrying gear. Then after a quick cough and carry portage, we arrived at another lake and canoed several kilometres to our campsite. Finding which campsite to choose was an adventure in itself because which one we would end up on was a mystery. The scenery was very beautiful and pristine.

Noah Johnson said...

part 2
After choosing a campsite and setting up, the real fun began… there was gathering firewood, setting the fire and eating to be done. I enjoyed doing tasks with friends because the necessary tasks felt like fun and not a chore. My favourite times were evenings at the camp, which involved reflecting on the day, eating and playing games by the campfire. The campfire was where everyone came together and was a great social place. I had much more fun on the lake with friends than I would have at school because of all the experiences that brought us together.
The second day was more relaxed than the first, and the real excitement was the cold, cold water and navigating through the woods at night. I enjoyed the freedom of cooking and deciding how to manage time with my peers. The third day, we packed up and left for the second camping spot. I thought the second was much better than the first because of the scenery. The third night was also my favourite because of the fun times we had at dinner, and watching the stars and telling jokes. Our night time relation was hard earned because of all the portaging and work we had to do to get to the next camp.
The final day involved us waking up bright and early so we could get to baron canyon and finally back to the bus. As soon as I got out of my sleeping bag, I realised how cold it was, the ice on my tent also seconded this notion. I was sad to pack up camp because of all the great times I was having, yet when we got to the canyon I was amazed at the forces of nature and the beauty of our natural environment. The last day was also hard work, but at the same time another adventure because of all the sights we saw on our way back to the bus.
From the time I got on the bus on Wednesday, to the time I got off Saturday evening, I had learned so many new things, made new friends and gained valuable and meaningful experiences and memories. I am very glad I went on this camping trip because of the great experience it was. The things I disliked most were the portaging and carrying equipment- yet that made getting to camp and eating all the more meaningful. I saw myself and others realise how to improve at canoeing, teamwork and initiative over the trip. The things I enjoyed most were the campfire with friends, and seeing baron canyon. I wouldn’t be the same had I not gone on the 2012 PAD3O canoe trip.

LucasBullen said...

The canoe trip with the grade elevens was a real learning experience for me being someone who has never been camping before. On the first day when my cooking group were making bacon and eggs we were cooking over the flame of the fire which resulted in the eggs getting a little burnt. For our stir fry the next day, after it was brought to our attention that it is better not to cook on flame but on coals, the food was not burt but cook perfectly. To get to that point of having the perfect cooking fire I also have learned about collecting wood and how you should never cut down trees near the camp site because it obstructs from the natural beauty of the area. Knowing the different types of fire materials and their purposes in the fire also helped keep a good healthy fire going. From kindling to fuel, I found it important to know the differences and their effects to the fire.
On the second day when we went to the falls I have learned something very important about cold water and peoples bodies. Its that peoples bodies don't work that well in cold water. This I found to be a good thing to do so that we have a better respect for cold water and we will now most likely understand that its not something to play around with.
During the lesson from Mr.Brouwer I also have learned about the teaching technique of the “poop” sandwich, and how it can help while trying to teach others about what they are doing wrong and how to fix it. After that lesson Mr.Brouwer used the “poop” sandwich technique on us to help us with our time management. That was one of the biggest problems in the trip, the wasting of time. An example of this is when there were still things to be done around camp and a few people were either just sitting by the fire or eating. On the last morning I believe we got over this problem mostly when no one was eating until all of their stuff was packed up so we were able to get going early.
Over all I really enjoyed the trip as a learning experience and a chance to have some fun with friends. I personally believe that I am more prepared for my next outdoor adventure because of this trip.

SpeedPaddler said...

This canoe trip left me with many great memories and new friends from the journey. When we arrived at Algonquin park we were surprised by the fact that unknowingly the gate was closed at our entrance, therefore we started our trip on a bad note due to the 1 kilometer portage we started with. After the agonising portage we began the true trip by setting out on Grand Lake, the second portage was a simple portage in which we used the coffin carry technique to save time. Finally after a long and strenuous paddle we arrived at the first campsite on Stratton Lake, before night fall we managed to set up camp and get fire wood for the next 2 days.

The next morning was a slow moving morning, for me it was slow moving because it was pretty cold out and I didn't want to leave the warmth of my sleeping bag. However the bacon and eggs we had for breakfast gave me the will power to push through and be ready for the day. That afternoon Mr. Brouwer taught us different types of wood and methods to building a fire, after the lesson was over we canoed to High Falls to go swimming and to go on the waterslide. The water was frigid, as soon as you entered it, your body would go into quick shock and you'd feel as if all your air was taken away. That night was a nice calm evening during which my group had a great time around our campfire.

The next morning was brutal, it was freezing cold and we had to break camp, luckily we managed and started off later than expected however. Before the first portage of the day me and my canoe partner got stuck on a rock for quite a few minutes, this put us not in the best mood. Finally we managed to get out and continue on, after the first quick and easy portage the next few ones were quite long and agonising on everyone on the trip. Finally after many sore backs, necks and shoulders we arrived at our second campsite on Opalescent Lake. Once the campsites were decided and set up we had a delicious dinner consisting of spaghetti and veggies. Yet again this evening was spent around a campfire with friends and having a blast.

The next morning we woke up bright and early..only to be meet with frost on our paddles and whatever else that was left out. This was then followed closely with a 700m portage through a rocky terrain, however the magnificent view of Opalescent Lake that morning made up for all the hard work throughout the trip, it was incredible, the heavy mist, followed by the rising sun reflecting off the calm water surface. After the first portage the sun was shining, the air was warming up, we were travelling down the Barron Canyon and the trip ended with everyone in a great mood.

For me this would have to be one of my all time best outdoors trips, the time I had with friends, old and new, was just amazing. The nights spent around the campfire just talking and joking around, I'll never forget them, and I hope everyone else on the trip feels the same way!

Aidan Thirsk said...

Our 3O Algonquin Park Canoe Trip was a truly phenomenal camping experience and I can’t wait for the trip next year. This was the first camping I had done since moving to Canada, being regular campers in Texas; so I was certainly ready to be able compare the experiences.

Having never camped with anyone on the trip before, I was a bit concerned about how our communication and teamwork was going to be since our food planning had some complications. Contrary to what I was expecting, our group worked exceptionally well. The group was able to make quick decisions and divide up workload fairly. After getting to a campsite, each person found a job that needed to get done and did it. This ability to fit in and have everyone working well together made the entire trip really enjoyable and meant we would have down time at the end of the day to relax and recover from the canoeing we had just done. Other than the group I was in, I think my favorite part of the trip was Algonquin Park. It was really satisfying to be in such a beautiful environment and be able live in it for half a week. The campsites were very well taken care of and well set up, meaning we could enjoy the campsites as the rest of the environment. Being so far away from the city and the rest of civilization has a really peaceful feel to it, and it was the first time I was able to see the stars in Ottawa!

I don’t have any major complaints about the trip, at least none that are important enough for me to remember. If I had to pick something that I didn’t like, it would be how windy/cold it got at some points. I wasn’t really used to it and my lips were chapped because of it, but the wind and temperature were out of anybodies control so I quickly got over/used to it. That being said, I don’t think there is much I would do differently if I did it again. I might bring a pair of gloves for the temperature but I was perfectly happy without any, and I probably could have had more water.

A lesson I learn on almost all of the longer camping experiences I have is just how different it is spending 4 days away from technology and other luxuries. I forget how different it is without technology each time. It isn’t that I would have liked to have the usual luxuries with me when we were camping; it is just really noticeable how unfamiliar life becomes. I guess that’s what makes the outdoors so enjoyable; it forces you to stop relying on luxuries.

Overall, I had a really great time with some really great people and I would absolutely do this same trip again.

BillaBong said...

This year’s Outdoor Ed camping trip was really a great experience. Algonquin Park is an amazing place to visit this time of year. Although a bit cold, the fall colours were amazing.
I learned a lot of things on this trip. I learned to better my own knowledge of how to paddle a canoe. At the campgrounds, I learned how to use tarps to make wind blocks. This was especially useful at one of our sites where we were situated on a point at ta bend in the lake and we were out in the open. I also learned how to identify dry, standing firewood by looking up at the treetops. If the tops are dead, no leaves or needles, this should prove to be a good tree to take down for firewood. Of course, the tree needed to be small enough for us to cut down with our limited supplies. If the tree still looked alive, it meant it would be too green to use for a good fire.
I would like to say that my favourite part of the trip was the waterslides, but they were really COLD! Mostly, I think I enjoyed just getting away from the city and school. My least favourite part of the trip was the weather, especially the snow.
All in all, it was a great trip. The food had been planned well – lots of good food to eat and help keep us warm. In reflecting on the accommodations of the trip, however, I think that it may not have been the best idea for us to have chosen to sleep in such a large tent. I wonder if we might have been able to conserve heat better with only two or three of us in a smaller tent? Perhaps I will get the chance again. I certainly hope so! Who knows, maybe I can even get my family to make the trip next summer (when its warmer).

tyler franklin said...

This outdoor ed trip was one of the most exelerating things that I have ever done. I was on the hiking trip in grade ten so I had an idea on what it would be like but I greatly underestimated the physical demands that I had to perform. Coffin carrying and portaging the red white water canoes was the most difficult things to do on this trip. I have never learned more then when I was on this trip. I have learned that I packed to much in my dry bag. My sleeping bag was to large and I ran out of room and so I had trouble packing in the mornings. I believe that I did not do as much as I should have when it came to cooking and dishs. If there was one thing that I could take home from this trip it would be that I was not prepaired enough mentaly or physicely. I thought that it would be a bit easier then it was but it was one of those things that you had to deal with. This was an amazing trip and I wish that I could do it again.

Katie Jackson said...

Part 1
My grade 11 outdoor-ed class went for a canoe trip to Algonquin Park on October 10th, 11th, 12th and the 13th. When we first arrived the gate was closed, so we had to portage for about a kilometer before we made it to the water. We paddled and portaged our way to our campsites during the day and camped out for the night. The weather held out for us which for me was a string of good luck because the weather lately had been a little too rainy for my liking. Luckily for us, it stayed cloudy and a little windy throughout the day and night, and it only drizzled on us a little.
During our time canoeing, we were short a couple canoes because there were so many of us. My original canoeing partner and I had to be separated because there were no spots for us to stay together. Her and I joined other canoes and relaxed in the middle, sitting on the pack bags and food barrels. I didn’t really enjoy the middle that much because I felt a little useless, even though it was pretty comfortable. I also was not used to having different partners because my partner and I had grown accustomed to each other’s paddling techniques, so as we had to find new partners it felt like I had to slow down and lessen my paddling strength for my new canoeing partners.
Trying to find our first campsite was long and tedious. I felt that we were losing precious daylight trying to find the ideal campsite. When we finally found it, all of the tenting groups on our site got straight to work, setting tents up and placing all of our bags in our tents. We then waited for Mr. Brouwer to canoe his way to the other side of the lake where wood would begin to be chopped down. The wood by the way was fantastic. It was dry and light, which was the perfect firewood. Emma, Mallory, Lucas and I chopped the wood, because the others would try to avoid it.
Setting up the tarps around the fire to prevent wind and water getting to it was BRUTAL. I have NEVER struggled with something like that in my entire life. It was horrible! I can’t tie knots to save my life and I’m positive that Mr. Brouwer wanted to just curl up in a ball and die when he saw my knots. I AM SO SORRY SIR!!! It is never a good thing when you have knots named after you. After it took us about an hour to get the one tarp up, Mr. Brouwer came over and took it all down (understandably so) and he started over. His set up and his knots were pretty fancy, and he happened to have a name for every single knot he made. In the end Emma, Mallory and I were very grateful for his amazing constructive and efficient fire pit protecting system.
My cooking group was on breakfast duty, and we decided to do eggs, bacon and English muffins. We did not remember the butter, so the eggs became caked on the pan and we cooked the bacon separately, but that could have been avoided had we placed the stones around the camp fire a little larger to properly fit everything. When we ran out of eggs, we still had leftover English muffins, so we toasted them over the fire and placed peanut butter on them. I offered everyone oranges, but nobody wanted them, so I enjoyed them myself.

Katie Jackson said...

Part 2
When we were on dinner duty, we decided to make a stir fry. It was delicious! It had a mix of rice, corn, beans and a Thai powder, and I would highly recommend using that dish after good day of physical activity. It made enough servings for everyone and all of the students that we fed seemed happy with the meal.
When we were heading for our new campsite, we went through a series of portages to reach our destination. We had to take one very long portage, and unfortunately since the food barrels were still too heavy for me to carry the barrel and the canoe, I just took the canoe. It was the longest portage of the day, and it had been a long day. During the hike I had lost Kelsey and Haley so I was on my own as I walked. I proudly carried the canoe the entire way but I was exhausted, it was definitely more difficult then what I had imagined. I suppose if I could do something different, I could be less stubborn and actually ask for a little bit of help.
Trying to find our last campsite was tough. There was a campsite on the edge of the water, which I was worried because it would be far too windy. There was also one across the lake which was the one that the boys had already claimed. Jen and Lauren had already scouted and said that it was far too small to all fit in. We decided to canoe further down and that was when we found our campsite, where it was big enough to hold a six person tent, beside a four person tent, fit Emma’s tent and fit our cooking partners tent. It was a lot of fun that night cooking marshmallows and laughing and cracking jokes was wonderful. I wondered if Mr. Brouwer could hear us all singing, laughing and cheering, because we certainly were rowdy.
In the end, I had such an enjoyable experience and I absolutely loved getting closer with people that I didn’t normally talk to very often at school. There were a lot of mishaps and a lot of new experiences, but I honestly wouldn’t change a thing because there was not a time throughout those four days that I didn’t learn something. I would love to do it all again, with the same group, even with that crazy amount of people.
I feel like I haven’t said this enough sir, but thank you so much for everything that you have done and have had to suffer through and put up with. I hope you feel that it was all worth it, because to me, this trip has been the highlight of my school year so far. Thank you again sir!

Sam C said...

PAD30 Camping Trip
October 10- October 13, 2012

This years camping trip was truly one of the greatest experiences of my outdoor life. I have camped lots of times before and even done a canoe trip to Achray, but this was a lot more physically demanding than I thought it would be. But with the help and support of my classmates and group partners, we were able to overcome any of the difficulties that we encountered on the trip. The first day started out with bad weather as we got to the gates of Achray, and we had to portage the gear one kilometre before we got to the launch point, but as soon as we got to the beach, the weather cleared and we were in for a beautiful paddle along Grand and Stratton lake. The first meal of the trip on Stratton Lake went well, though the pizzas could have been a little more cooked. Thomas and I had not one problem setting up our tent and extra gear. The first night was relatively warm, and I got a good sleep. The next morning my cooking group and myself made eggs and bacon. This also went fairly well, except for the eggs got a little stuck to the pan. Later that day we paddled a short distance to high falls. This was a great way to spend some of the day. Most of the students went in the water for a swim, and then immediately got out as the water was very, very cold. When we got back for the falls, we quickly made a fire to warm up, and to start cooking on. On that night we had another successful dinner. The next morning, we awakened to an absolutely gorgeous day on Stratton lake, and soon after we had breakfast, we were on our way to the “finish line” at squirrel rapids. Another great day was upon us, as we were headed through the Barron canyon, a sight that still amazed me the second time around. After we exited the canyon, we were on the last stretch towards the end of a great trip. When we got to squirrel rapids there was no trouble getting the canoes on the trailer and the gear packed in the bus. Everything was ready to go, and we left for home. When we got back to the school, everyone helped get the gear unloaded and where it needed to be. Like I said before, this trip was amazing and I am so glad that I went on it! I can't wait for next year moving water trip, as it will be another fun, skill-testing adventure that I will be glad to be apart of.

Anonymous said...

Canoe trip reflection

When we first started our trip, I was nervous because I didn’t know what it was going to be like, but I was also really excited to go camping. One of my favourite pass-times is camping, so I was interested to see what it would be like with the class this year. When we first got to Algonquin Park, we were struck with the bad news that the gate we were supposed to go in was locked. I didn’t know what to expect from that news, but soon after he told us our options, or option: to portage 1km to the river. I was thinking “Oh man, I’m going to die before we even get into the water”. I was carrying a food barrel, and I realized that as time went on, it seemed to be getting heavier and heavier. When I thought we were at the end, we still had about 500m or so to get to the lake. I thought I could have passed out then and there, but I didn’t want to let the rest of the class down, or be the first one to “wimp out”. I stuck with it, but when we finally got to the water, we had to go back and help. I think before the trip, it would have been a good idea for me to start carrying extra weight in bags and stuff, just to get the feeling, because I was not expecting the bags to be as heavy as they were.

After the first day was done, I realized that maybe I hadn’t packed enough clothes. I only had two sweaters, and wore both of them almost the whole trip. The only problem is, if they got wet, or I couldn’t wear them anymore, then I was basically going to freeze. I brought too many pairs of socks, and extra t-shirts, when realistically, I should have brought more sweaters, and less of everything else. On the next trip, I will definitely keep this in mind, and pack for the occasion, realistically. Luckily, I didn’t fall in the water, and the sweaters stayed normal the whole trip, so I was lucky.

On the last day, we had left our campsites really early in the morning to catch the bus at the right time, I thought it was a little rushed, but we still made it out okay. We were spread out over three campsites that we could only reach by canoe. So that morning we had left staggered, and when we finally all met up after the first portage, we had to count the bags and paddles, to make sure no one forgot anything. It was made aware that we had forgotten a paddle somewhere along the way, so a group of people went back to look through the portage trail if it had fallen anywhere. The whole time they were gone, I was getting frustrated, because a paddle isn’t exactly that hard to miss. If it was at someone’s campsite, they should have realized, and just picked it up and brought it. No one said anything about the whereabouts of this missing paddle, and now I was getting really annoyed. Not only did we lose the paddle, but because of this missing paddle, we were going to be late getting our bus. This was not okay with me. After we finally came to the idea that everyone would just chip in a few dollars to get a new paddle, my body filled with complete joy, because after about 20 minutes sitting, arguing who had the paddle, we could finally continue on our route. In the end, this trip turned out to be pretty cool, and despite all the little setbacks, ran pretty smoothly. I would definitely do this trip again because it was such a good experience, and I learned some stuff that I never would have about the outdoor world.

Thomas Hubert said...

The Outdoor Ed canoe trip on October 10th was an amazing experience. We went to the Algonquin provincial park for four days and had some amazing experiences and unforgettable moments. Through tough paddles and backbreaking portages, we were able to make it to our campsites and enjoy the natural beauty that Algonquin had to offer.

On the first day we were supposed to arrive at Grand lake, but due to the park gate being closed, we had no choice but to portage for 1 km. It was not something that I was quite happy about, but we got through it fairly fast and only about an hour and a half later we were on the water. The first paddle was somewhat frightening to say the least, I was in a canoe with 2 other people and we were carrying much more gear than everybody else because water was almost spilling into our canoe. By the time we reached our first portage, we had barely avoided flipping multiple times. Thankfully for us, the water beyond Grand lake was considerably calmer, so we were able to make it safely to our first campsite. We had set up our tents and wind blocks before dinner so we had some time to relax and socialize. We ate mini pizzas that night, which proved to be a learning experience because we could have done a much better job had we though out our preparations better. All in all the first day was harsh, but for most people ended in success.

The second day we awoke to a fairly cool morning and we had an alright breakfast of bacon and eggs. This gave us enough energy to collect more firewood and prepare for the storm that was going to come sometime that day. We worked and socialized until lunch, which was peanut butter and jam sandwiches. After luch we departed for high falls and a day of freezing ourselves in the below 60 degree water. Most of us went swimming, and we all agreed that it was worth it, then we headed back to our camp for the rest of the day. By dinner time, the wind had picked up and we were thankful that our wind blocks were doing their jobs. For dinner, we had quesadillas with ham, cheese and peppers. It was one of our best meals, and we were able to go to sleep on full stomachs.

We woke up on the third day to an early breakfast, then we packed as fast as we could, although it was still pretty slow compared to our schedule. We were on the water late, and we decided to stop at a campsite along the way for lunch. We ate pizza bagels, which turned out pretty good, then quickly packed and headed towards our campsite once again. We made it to our campsite later that day, and after setting up our tents and wind blocks, we made our dinner of pasta with hotdogs in it. It was really good, and we had an excellent quantity, so we were able to once again go to sleep on full stomachs.

The last day at the park we woke up bright and early because we wanted to impress Mr. Brouwer after our dissapointing startup the day before. We quickly heated oatmeal and soon we were off, much to Mr. Brouwers delight. We spent the rest of the day up until lunch paddling, and we were awed at the natural beauty of the Barron Canyons. By the time we reached the bus, we were all proud that we were able to make it through Algonquin successfully, and as we packed and departed, we began to remember lots of the experiences that happened, and as we shared them we knew that the best part of the trip was not over, because we would always be able to remember it.

Chelsea Maddock said...

Part 1
The grade 10 outdoor Ed camping trip to Algonquin Park was a truly amazing experience where I learned many outdoor skills and got close to new people.

On the morning of October 10th 2012 everyone worked together to pack up the food barrels, bags and canoes before we left for the amazing trip to Achray provincial park. When we arrived, we were greeted with the fact that the gate was closed, meaning that we would have to portage 1 km to the water, our longest portage of the trip. We unloaded all of the gear and were ready to go. I grabbed a bag with the smaller clothing barrels and the tent. When I first put in on my back, I found it heavy, but doable. As I moved on down the road, I discovered just how heavy this bag really was and thought that I wasn't going to be able to carry it the whole way. Finally I arrived, left my bag, and headed back to see if anyone needed help. I probably should have prepared myself for the heavy lifting that I would have been required to do.

Once everyone brought everything down and we were ready to get on the water, we loaded all of the food and barrels into the canoes. We had three people in our canoe so someone had to sit on top of the bags while they paddled. Before we left, we assigned a navigator, but once we began paddling, there was much confusion about who that was and everyone was also very spread out. We should have stayed closer together so that everyone knows exactly where they were headed. I did one of the portages and learned that it is much harder to carry the canoe when on the rocky terrain like the portages, but was able to make it most of the way.

We arrived at our first camp and had to make the decision of who was setting up where. Once we decided where everyone was staying, my group set up our tent on a slanted area so later that night we would discover that we would keep slipping down. I wanted to get changed since we were finished canoeing for the day, but I realized that I only packed one pair of warm socks- I should have packed more of them rather than some of the other items I did pack. The night everything went pretty smoothly. The dinner was descent although it was missing some vegetables and the right amount of buns for the chicken burgers. Other than that everything went well.

Chelsea Maddock said...

Part 2
The next morning was pretty cold, but we had the sun to help heat us up. We made hot chocolate and scrambled egg sandwiches for breakfast. Since we cooked the eggs in the flame, they didn’t taste right and needed to be put in English muffins to help with the flavour. We learned that you should cook food over coals and only boil water over the flame. The rest of the day we learned about how to make a fire and went down to High Falls where many insane people went swimming. The dinner that night was the best of the whole trip. We made a chicken stir-fry (I had fake chicken) with rice and it was absolutely delicious! It was another nice night before the next day.

The next day we tried to wake up and leave early but in the end were quite a bit behind schedule. Once we got on the water, everything went smoothly. We set up camp across the lake from our other half of the cooking group so they had to canoe over when they wanted food, but it was fine for us. We took a very long time to cover the fire, but in the end, it worked out. The spaghetti tasted really good and there was plenty. What I didn’t like about this fire was that it wasn’t open enough for everyone to get the heat.

The next day we were on the water bright and early in order to catch the bus. We only had a few hiccups including the loss of a paddle, but overall it was a nice paddle to the end and it was a beautiful day. We made it to the bus on time to finish off the great trip.

This camping trip was great but if I were to do it again, I would probably change what I packed. When I was packing, I found it impossible to close my barrel, but I realize now that I packed far too many clothing items. I should have packed more sweaters and warm socks because I only had enough that if I would have fallen in the water, I wouldn’t have had anything warm to change into. I didn’t use most of the other clothing items so I would have changed what I packed. I learned a lot on this trip and was given the chance to get closer to new people. I had such an amazing on this trip and would do it again in a heartbeat

Anonymous said...

Before we went on the trip I was really stressed about it. I didn't know what to expect and the whole cooking situation made me nervous, I had never shopped and cooked for 20 people in the middle of the woods. I was worried that there wouldn't be enough especially since the majority of our cooking group was male, and they do tend to eat more than us ladies.

When we got there I realized how far a kilometer actually was, having never suffered one with a canoe or pack on my back. It was definitely an adjustment compared to the portages we had gotten used to around the school. By the time we found the beach it took a while to push off and in the end my canoeing partner and I got separated so there was another adjustment to be made, as we had gotten used to each other's strengths and weaknesses.

When we were on the water the first day there was a lack of communication that lead us to having no idea where we were in fact going, it was a slow start to say the least, but got progressively better over the next few days.

It was a bit of a process to set up camp and longer than hoped to finally get the show on the road, as always Brouwer let us struggle the first night with fires then helped us the second. I think that we got ours started alright though. I was a whole other story with the tarp, we struggled with it for about two hours before Brouwer came and took it down (we really weren't offended). That alone was a feat in itself, as it involved undoing a few Katie knots (wrapped around the tree about ten times with a nice bow to finish things off). In the end we had a nicely preserved fire, full bellies and another big day in the future.

We didn't move camp the next day but we did move our tent! we discovered the night before that we were in a dip and water wanted to dampen our beds, so to higher ground it was for us, lucky we discovered that then because rain was in the forecast for that day. On the way back from High falls the wind really started to pick up and we were extremely grateful for the tarps.

The next day there were a lot of portage opportunities. We flip flopped and had a few really good ones and a few not so good ones, but it was all in the learning curve. It actually snowed that day too, so you could definitely tell whether or not we packed properly clothes wise. At our new campsite we were more split up so there was a bit of canoeing around to find bags and equipment. At this campsite we ended up setting up our own trap which only took us about three hours and seven tries but held up well in the end. Then it was off to bed for us, and a quick early morning. We got ourselves together and packed fairly quickly but hit a bump in the road when it came to organizing canoes, but after that we were well on our way! The last day was nice and smooth and finished on a good but tired note.

All in all I think it went well. The food and company was great, and we really had a fun time and learnt a lot, I have a new appreciation for canoeing and would defineitly do it again, thank you sir!

Ben said...

Part 1:

The grade 11 canoe trip was a great experience. It all started before October 10th with menu planning and equipment lists which went really well for my group. I got everything packed the night before and was ready to leave on the 10th. The first day started out long, with a 1km portage as soon as we got off the bus, but everyone did their part and it got done quickly. One thing I learned through the trip was to help others on the portages. It feels really good when you’re walking with a canoe on your back and somebody offers to hold it so you can take a break. After the great paddle to our first campsite on Stratton Lake, my group chose a campsite tucked in the bay away from the wind which was great to keep the wind away. Gathering firewood and getting dinner organized should have gone faster this night but that improved throughout the trip. I don’t think anyone realized how long it takes to cook for 18+ people in a small fire pit until after this dinner! We didn’t bring enough buns for the amount of burgers we had, so we should have brought more.

The second day we got to stay at the same campsite since we paddled double on the first day. I really enjoyed this since it was a relaxing and easygoing day. We got to visit High Falls where the water was very cold but a great experience nonetheless. I regret not going down the water slide, but jumping off the cliff was enough for me after realizing how cold it was! The rest of the day was wet and rainy which made me happy that we set up a tarp above our fire pit since it rained pretty hard at some points in the evening. I really learned that being prepared for something before it happens, especially out in the wilderness, is a smart thing to do.

Ben said...

Part 2:

The third day started off slowly and this is where I realized how quickly you need to start taking things down and packing up as soon as you wake up. Because of the early start, we stopped early for a lunch of soup and wraps grilled over the fire. Probably the most satisfying meal of my trip, it was tasty and there was enough to fill me up. Stopping in the middle of the canoeing for that day really helped it seem shorter and easier. We stopped to collect firewood at the end of the last portage, which was a great idea since I didn’t see very much around our campsite. The last night was definitely the coldest night and I was glad that someone gave me the idea to put the clothes I was wearing the next day in my sleeping bag, so I would have nice warm clothes to wear the next day. The clothing that was left outside got really cold so I learned to bring clothing inside the tent if it’s going to be a cold night.

The last morning we were greeted by a nice sunrise and the realization of how much rushing we had to do to pack everything up for the trip home. Everyone worked well together to get everything packed up in time to leave for breakfast, and eventually home. This was our longest portion of the trip, but going through the Barron Canyon was definitely a sight to see. All I have to say is I was glad to see the bus at the end of the trip, even though it was such a good trip. With such a large group, I hardly even felt how large the group was as everyone helped each other out and found things to do. I found I learned many things and I’m sure everyone else did also.

sam24 said...

Canoe Trip Reflection

The grade eleven canoe trip to Algonquin park was amazing. I had gone on the hiking trip in grade 10 which was also an awsome experience, but it was in no comprison to this years trip to the Baron river.

The trip was full of good times from start to finnish. Everybody was looking forward to spending some great days canoeing together. It got windy from time to time on the water, but it only lasted a couple of minutes. The weather was beautiful considering it was early October, and the forcast was calling for rain all weekend.We got mostly sunshine, but the mornings were cold. My favourite part of the trip was going to the High Falls water slide. I have to admit that I wasnt expecting the water to be that cold, so if I did this again, I dont think i would jump in! Even though the water was absolutely freezing, we still had a lot of fun.

One thing I think my group could have improved on was menu planning. A lot of the meals we either had too much, or not enough. Even though we didnt put that into concideration, we still made good use of the left overs. A personal improvement would be helping more when I'm done with portaging. When I was finnished my portage, I was too egar to get in the water and relax. I should have gone back to help the others that were struggling.

All in all ,the trip was great. That was definately my best camping experience, and I would absolutely do this trip again if I had the opportunity!

Haley Lorenz said...

Canoe Trip Reflection

Even before the canoe trip I was so excited to go and just be away from the city and to be with my friends, but as it got closer to the date of heading off I got a little nervous because I wasn't 100% sure what to expect from the whole experience. The cooking groups confused me at first but kelsey explained it all to me.

The first day was really great because the bus ride it was raining and it was perfect because the rain stopped as we got going onto the water. What really bothered me was the first portage we had to do because the gates were closed and it was a kilometer portage. My shoulders were numb after that and I thought THe rest of the portages were going to be miserable because I was so sore from the first one. I honestly didn't think I would last. I was wrong though, the portages weren't too bad for me. Katie and I split the distance for portaging and it worked out perfectly because I would portage second and once I saw the water I just marched happily the rest of the way because I knew it wasn't too much further.

The cooking on the trip was interesting. I think we could of been more organized because we were missing some pots to cook certain foods so we had to improvise. The meals really should of had more vegetables and fruit because we all ate a lot of bread, and that didn't agree with me too much. My favourtie night for dinner though was the last night where all the girls and some guys stayed at one campsite and all the other guys stayed at another site and they had to canoe to get there food. I thought it was pretty hilarious because they would sprint for the canoes and paddle as fast as possible to eat first.

The canoeing part of the trip was a lot of fun. In the mornings it was beautiful with the fog settled on the water. I really liked when I was being a "princess" because I was sitting in the middle of the canoe on the backpacks as Kelsey and Katie paddled.

The cold weather really got me. At night especially the last night I froze. I'm pretty sure I woke up each hour because I was so cold, so next time I will pack a warmer sleeping bag!

Overall the trip was an amazing experience and I would definatley do a trip like this again in the heart beat. I love it.

Anonymous said...

Canoe Trip Reflection

The PAD3O canoe trip to Algonquin Park was the best school trip I have ever been on before in my life. The trip was very fun and satisfying for me knowing I can canoe and portage those kind of distances without having to be brought back by an ambulance. I was talking and hanging out with new people which is always nice. I can honestly say that I cannot wait for the trip next year.
The first day of the trip I wasn't nervous at all because I had been camping a few times a year almost all my life, but I was very anxious because I had never been camping with so many people at once. While I was packing my water bag I was noticing how much my partner and I had packed because it ended up weighing easily more than 100 pounds. Right then I noticed how much nicer it would have been to have a dry sac instead of a water barrel which already weighed a good 5 pounds without anything in it. The trip started off a little bit slow because the gate was closed so we had to portage all of the stuff approximately 1 kilometre right off the start which was very tiring when you are carrying all of the heavy stuff. As soon as I had reached the lake I noticed how beautiful the trip would be because the scenery was as good as is gets with all of the amazing fall colours. The rest of the day was very easy going and much easier after that, we even skipped the first camp site which ended up making the trip much more calm. Getting the camp site ready was a simple task for me since I had done this sort of thing many times before and once the camp site was ready, the rest of the night was relaxing and extremely fun.
The second day of the trip was much more relaxing then the first day, yet extremely cold. Mr. Brouwer told the style of teaching he uses otherwise known as a "Fecal Matter Sandwich". Today was also the day we ended up going to the falls and swimming in the frigid water. Let me rephrase that sentence. Today was the day that we went to High falls, jumped in the water and got out as quickly as possible. The water was so cold that when you were in the water you lungs collapsed and it felt as if you honestly could not breathe. The water was very refreshing though and worth every second.
The third day was just as good as the first two. We started the day off by packing our stuff which took a lot longer than anyone had expected. Once we were all packed, and everything was accounted for, we left for the next campsite. This day was the most strenuous on my muscles because portaging became very difficult when taking two canoes per portage. My back and shoulder muscles were not agreeing with my brain. If nobody else was going to do it, then someone has to go back even if it sucked. The rest of the day was great. Having our own side of the lake was really nice for a few reasons: First, nobody interrupts you and walks by screaming and yelling. Second, being alone with all of your friends is something that is always fun. Third, you are not worried about anybody getting too close while you are on the "thunder box".
The fourth day seemed really quick. We all packed up very fast and we were all ready to go within an hour. We left right away and you could tell at that point people were ready to get home. Once we reached the Baron canyon all you could see was beautiful features all over the place. Whenever I looked at someone, they were staring at the intriguing features of the canyon. The only part of the Baron canyon that I didn't thoroughly enjoy was the loud, obnoxious singing of the girls in their canoe.
All in all, I believe that this was an extremely successful trip. I feel that every single person on the trip had fun and learned new facts and skills about nature, canoeing and camping.

Tavis said...

The grade eleven canoe trip to Algonquin park was awesome. I haven't gone camping in a couple of years and I had tons of fun and got lots of amusing memories.

My favourite part of the canoe trip was when we went to the high falls water slide. Even thought it was low water it was still really interesting to see and I want to go back when the water is higher to see the difference. A lot of people found the water really cold, but I found it really nice after I adjusted to the temperature I guess I can just handle colder temperatures the some other people. But I need to be more careful if I go back because I shouldn't have stayed in the water as long as I did, but it was fine and dandy in the end.

One thing my group and I need to do next time is to make sure we bring enough food or at least more snacks. Also we need to set up roles right when we get to our camp-site because both times we were a bit disorganized after the portages, like our tent was with another group or some people didn't know what to do. This was usually solved by somebody directing them eventually if they were in view otherwise the went unnoticed.

But in a whole I found the trip to be a very pleasant change of scenery and also that it was a good experience. I don't believe I would have seen some of the things unless I want on this trip and I would do it again if I was offered.

Jennifer Hauteclocque said...

On October 10th to the 13th, my grade eleven outdoor education class went on a canoe trip to Algonquin Park to experience first hand the challenge and beauty of camping outdoors. Although, next time hopefully we’ll keep better track of our stuff and not lose another paddle.

The learning process began before we even left the school. At home the night before we left, I realised how little space we had in our barrel for everything we might need on the trip only after I attempted several times to fit everything I needed, or thought I would need, inside my barrel. I decided only the things that would serve to keep me warm or hold my food and water was important enough to come with me on the trip, and everything else could go, then finally everything fit. As the canoe trip drew on, I began to realise that a lot of situations resembled a big three dimensional version of tetris whether it was packing your barrel, packing the canoe, or determining where to set up the tents. That said, I think it is appropriate say that the ability to cram as much stuff in the smallest amount of space possible, and being able to determine what is needed on a canoe trip as opposed to what you think you need are both extremely important lessons learned before and on this trip.

Throughout the canoe trip, I also came to realise that we were occasionally short on materials either because we forgot to bring them or because we just didn’t have enough originally for such a large number of people. For example, we didn’t have enough canoes to begin with which wasn’t really a big deal. To solve the problem, we simply overloaded some canoes with either people or barrells and were able to complete the trip without a problem. In another case, our cooking group forgot to bring grills, pots, and some sort of utility to stir things with. Although we suffered for this mistake, we learned to improvise. Luckily, some other campers left behind their grills, while we borrowed pots and a spatula from the other cooking group. Ultimately, the canoe trip taught me how to improvise, and make up for our mistakes by using our resources effectively and appropriately.

I think the largest lesson presented on this trip was how to steer and power a canoe effectively. From afar, it doesn’t look so hard but once you actually get in the canoe you have to learn a whole new vocabulary in just a few days. Primarily, I sit in the back and steer while Lauren takes the front, so I am much more familiar with stern terminology than bow terminology, but I feel as though my eyes have been opened to a uniquely beautiful subculture. After four days I was able to pick up on the different steering techniques, and my steering soon developed from zigzaging my way across the river to being able to steer straight. By the fourth day, I realised that I had progressed from kneeling on the floor of the canoe, to sitting properly on the seats. Although this may not seem significant to anyone else, as someone who has a history of tipping every canoe she’s ever been in, I thought it was quite an accomplishment.


Jennifer Hauteclocque said...

Another lesson I didn’t expect to learn was to accept that dirt is very much edible although I’m still not sure how nutritious it is. The first time I dropped food was merely a piece of cheese from my wrap. As it was covered in dirt, I automatically went to go throw it in the fire, which I found out is an action very much frowned upon. I ended up just putting it back into my wrap and eating it, and couldn’t taste the difference at all. By the fourth day I realised that there was either dirt or ash in all of our food and water, and it really had no impact on flavour or nutrition. I really learned to just appreciate what was given to me, and really just try not to overthink things.

A final and important lability I learned on the canoe trip is to overcome my shyness and socialise. When I joined outdoor ed, I noticed that people seemed more willing to talk to me, but I realise now that perhaps I’m just making a better effort to strike up a conversation. For example, at High Falls I played a card game with Phil and Ben which turned out to be a really fun experience, but it only happened because I told them I’d play after Lauren declined them. In fact, the whole canoe trip after that, I was hoping that we’d have another chance to play, but unfortunately we didn’t. Another example is when Travis (not Obrian) and I set out to find some big logs to put around the campfire for seats. We finally stumbled across a fallen tree only to find out that the tree was too large to saw completely through only after Travis had already sawed through 90% of it. We spent at least an hour throwing rocks at the tree, cutting off all the branches, trying to saw through it sideways, everything, until we finally managed to roll it over and break it. I’ve never felt so accomplished. Through these experiences, I made lots of friends with lots of different people. It’s kind of funny because a lot of them I’ve been in their classes since grade four, but never really talked to them. I believe it is fair to say that the canoe trip really brought people together.

Despite the hardship of carrying a million pound backpack/canoe on your back and trucking along for hundreds of meters feeling like a pack mule, I really enjoyed the trip and would definately do it again.

MattL12 said...

I went on the Algonquin Park Canoe Trip for the PAD3O class. I personally believe it was a successful trip because, it was a trip I will never forget. The weather was enjoyable, for the most part, and the company was great.

We started off the trip, on Stratton Lake. My canoe only consisted of 2 people, so we had plenty of room to carry gear. We began paddling, and the conditions were rainy and depressing, but I had high hopes that it was going to be an amazing experience. Sam and I worked well together, and he encouraged me to try my best. We did our first portage and it wasn't something I enjoyed, but it gave me good practice for the rest of the trip.

We arrived at our first campsite, and started setting up camp, but we were too hasty in setting up and we didn't select the right campsite, so after setting up our tents we had to take them down and move to a different one. That was one of the only minor downfalls we had on the first day. We had chicken burgers and hotdogs, and it was my groups turn to cook them, and it was good. I wouldn't change a thing about it, it was a quick meal, and filled everyone up. We had a campfire, and I had a restful sleep.

We spent two nights in that campsite, and it was awesome! On the third day, we went to high falls and I went in the water 13 times. It was really fun, but freezing cold. We went to our last campsite, and the rest of the trip went smoothly. I really enjoyed myself on this trip, and I had a great experience. I wouldn't change a thing, and I can't wait until next year!

kelsey mcclymont said...

Canoe Trip Reflection

Our canoe was so much fun. Getting to spend 4 days out on the water with my friends and, watching the leaves change colors was like nothing I could have ever imagined. Every moment spent there was worth it! I got to do some things I never thought I would do, like go down a rock water slide in October or go canoeing through a gorgeous canon.

I learned so much on this trip and so many things I can use for the rest of my life like how to properly cook over an open fire and what types of food to bring when on a canoe trip. I really liked having a camp fire at night with everyone getting to all just hang out and roast marshmallows. I loved the beautiful places we stayed at and saw but let’s face it there wasn’t one place that wasn’t jaw dropping. The only thing I didn’t like on the trip was useing the thunder box and doing the dishes because it seemed we did them every day for everyone.

There is nothing I would change about the trip and I would do it all again if I could. Our food was surprisingly good and we defiantly had enough for everyone. Our tent was nice and it felt good at night to know you had somewhere to go rest after a long day. I only wish the trip could have been longer. I loved getting to stay at the same camp for two nights in a row it really made the trip easier and more relaxing!

Overall the trip was fun, crazy, silly and I learned some new things. We had a great time and we really got to know each other. I will never forget the memories I made in Algonquin Park. Waking up each morning in Algonquin Park was truly beautiful. I am most definitely doing Outdoor Ed next year. So thank you Mr. Brouwer!

Russel Waldon said...

PAD30 Algonquin canoe Trip Reflection

Algonquin canoe trip for us (grade elevens) was simply amazing. I enjoyed everything about it, such as the weather, canoeing, swimming, cooking, and just sitting around the fire at night. I have gone camping many times throughout my life but being around a bunch of friends makes it so much different than just being with family.
After the long bus ride, things started to look up almost instantaneously. Unfortunately as soon as we got there we had a one kilometer portage with all of our stuff due to the gate being closed, so that was a minor setback. Once we had everything taken care of we quickly sorted out our canoe groups and began paddling down Grand Lake until we turned around and headed onto Stratton Lake. It was beautiful at that point. The ran had ended and the sun began to shine through the clouds, warming us up after the cold rain. We were all in great spirits, joking around with each other and having a great time. Eventually, a few hours later with hit land and set up camps.
The cooking within our group was alright, although it could have been better. We had enough quantity, but we should have been more aware of personal preferences and the food groups. We certainly lacked some fruit and vegetables the first day. Also, we had multiple meals with cheese involved, however we did not pack a cheese grader. We were all grateful for what we had, and there was not a lot of complaining. We worked well as a group, and we decided that instead of having certain people be in charge of specific meals, we all pitched in for every meal so that everybody had something to do. I feel this worked a lot better than what the other groups had done.
Personally, my favourite part of the trip was running back and forth through the forest at night. I believe this was the second night, so we didn't have to waste time setting up tents and sleeping gear. A bunch of us-Katie, Travis, Noah, Tyler and I walked back and forth between camps a few times in the pitch black darkness. It was a blast. People were slipping, falling, tripping and laughing to their hearts content. It was definitely a great time and I know everyone participating enjoyed it.
My least favourite part would have to be portaging, because by the end a lot of people had decided to not help others and just take their own equipment. This left me and a few others making multiple trips back and forth for each portage, and we definitely felt it get to us, especially after the long portages. We all sucked it up and took it for the team, but I can tell we were all thinking the same thing and wanted some more people to help us help them.
Overall, the trip was amazing. We succeeded in every challenge we faced, and despite the fact that we were a few hours behind on the last day we paddled hard and made that time back. Although everybody enjoyed the trip I know that we were all grateful to be sleeping in our own beds again (with hot showers) and electricity. If I had the choice to do this again, it would be an instant yes and I would be hyped to do it all over.

bossman said...


This trip was an adventure from the first day to the last. It had many ups and downs. One more the the other. The first day began with a disappointment with the largest portage of the trip, but I feel that woke us up and got us ready for the trip ahead.

The first afternoon was spent canoeing to our first campsite where we had some trouble figuring out where we would stay. After a change of location we were set for the two nights. We planned to stay there. After all the set up it was time for our dinner and some tasty chicken burgers that awaited me. They were good for a fast and hot meal that would last us for two days. The first night was a terrible night for me just because it was too for me.

The next day I was up early and ready to start the day. Breakfast was eggs and bacon. That were not perfect but were ok for what the group had to deal with. Everybody was excited to get on the water and have a look at High Falls. This also gave us a chance to go for a swim. As we arrived to High Falls it was very difficult to find the motivation to jump in the water. Once you feel that you can jump in you wish you had not. When you are submerging in the water you do not notice the cold temperature until your head breaks the water. Like a bolt of lightning it hits you, except you are really really cold. That the night was spent preparing for the rain that we were expecting. Our campsite was done. We finished setting up the tarps and all of our rain cover as it began to rain. We spent the night under the tarp trying not to get wet.

After a long sleep we packed up and ate breakfast at a relaxed pace because I gess we were not rushed this morning. Today was the day were we really felt the pain of long portages and exhausting canoe rides. The day was hard but went by fast and before we knew it we were at the campsite all ready to enjoy a lovely supper, of spaghetti with sauce. It was very nice to have a warm meal on one of the coldest days of the trip. The fire at our site was very enjoyable for us because of the lovely seats given to us by very intelligent people before us. Also another fantastic sleep.

The final day we were up very early and off to finish our trip with a hop in our step and smiles on our faces. With a wonderful bowl of oatmeal to start us thought the day ahead of us. The many portages and long canoe rides made us eager to not turn back and search for a lost paddle.

That is the end to a fantastic and eventful trip once again

kool story bro said...

Outdoor Ed Canoe trip Reflection -Hansley
Out of all the trips I have been on in Outdoor Ed this one was by far my favorite one for many reasons. During this trip I found that I actually changed a lot and I learned new things. Before going on this trip I realized that this will be the biggest / longest school trip I will ever do in my high school years.
This trip was a total of 4 days, not only was it my longest school trip it was also the most educative one, I learned a lot of different aspects of leaders, workers and helpers. One thing I have to mention is that our group managed to work very well together even though our differences. Some people had different ways of thinking and some just didn't know each other very well. I think that our group really felt the big difference in teamwork that was established .In my eyes there was a lot of people who stepped up and really helped each other out because of their past experiences with Outdoor Ed. You could really tell who had taken Outdoor Ed before because people who weren’t usually leaders stepped up and got problems fixed really fast and efficiently which is a really big aspect in teamwork , I can honestly say that I proud of my group for demonstrating those strengths and getting over some weakness’s.
My personal opinion why this trip was so great was because it involved way more things than last year’s grade 10 trip , the canoeing was the best part because it let us access places that are further and not accessible on foot , which made this canoe trip way more interesting and rich with new experiences. One thing that I also really enjoyed was that I got to be the Navigator for the entire group for the last 2 days and I was really happy and I really loved being in front leading 15+ canoes to their destination, I wish I had done it the entire trip. I think that this trip really made us connect to our peers on a whole different level, ex: Goat Call to my group was a really big highlight which is still used today at random times in the hallways. Another highlight that will definitely stick is the ‘fecal matter sandwich ‘which I really seem to notice in almost of all of my teacher’s teachings, and that I will keep and try to use to motivate people in my own activities in the near future. I would like to thank Mr Brouwer for an amazing experience and I can’t wait for next year’s trip.

-Hansley p

Lauren Trivett said...

The canoe trip was my first outdoor experience. Although it was awfully cold it was a wonderful trip and very exciting. My favourite part of the canoe trip was going to the waterfall because it was actually fun to walk along the rough terrain of Algonquin Park when you didn’t have to carry heavy packs or canoes. In all seriousness the trip was really fun and I learnt a lot while I was there. Since I was away for most of the week we were canoeing I was able to further my knowledge of how to paddle and get a good cycle going so that my paddling would be fast and efficient along with my partner. I learnt how to utilize tarps as wind blockers which was extremely helpful when we were camping in areas with no wind protection. I also learnt how to make the different types of fires; Tepee, and the Lodge house fire and what the different parts of trees were useful for in creating and sustaining a fire. I was really happy with my tent and cooking group as everyone was extremely helpful and supportive of each other and the food we made together was really good. Overall I was happy with the trip and would love to join Outdoor Ed again next year to join the Grade 12’s trip.

ryanleblanc2925 said...

Before going on the Canoe trip I was hesitant, within reason I think it’s more or less because I didn’t think I was prepared for it. However, the trip had its ups and downs I found. From the first leg of canoeing to the first campsite, we searched around looked for the best ones and then we set up. Also being new to the Cairine, the trip brought me closer to my classmates and I made a couple good friends.
The first night of the trip when we had settled I had a lot of problems with my tent, having little experience with the outdoors I looked at my tent and had the idea it was perfectly fine. Thanks to Mr. Brouwer I was able to sleep in it. We had some long legs to paddle and as well to portage but it was all worth it. The view of Barron canyon on its own I believe it was called made the trip all worthwhile. Waking up in the morning I have to admit that it was close to freezing, everyone was up at different times and caused breakfast to be a little hectic and sloppy but we got fed. The second night I was a little fed up with canoeing, and I think that instead of coming up with an excuse to not go get firewood I could have just sucked it up and gone. Considering the time of year the weather was fantastic, most of our group went swimming. Even though the water was ice cold, I’m surprised nobody got sick. The second morning it seemed to me that everyone got up generally at the same time and got breakfast all organized and everyone did their own dishes. For the most part there wasn’t a lack on the food; however my cooking group could have improved on the menu. We either had to much of one thing or not enough of another but one way or another we got everyone fed when it was our turn, especially when there were different types of appetites. One thing I remember for sure is swimming at high falls, cold but it was a lot of fun.
So therefore for my first real camping trip, I think I could have been a little more helpful. I definitely had a lot of fun though, it’s something I’ll remember about high school in the future.