Sleeping Giant Provincial Park - Northern Ontario

We woke up in Thunder Bay and the rain had finally stopped. It was wet outside, but the clouds were trying hard to break for some sunshine to poke through. This morning, Sleeping Giant seemed too close to Thunder Bay to be our destination, so I thought we should probably make some tracks and head to a different provincial park further down the highway.

I loaded us up.

 Giant spoon at Walmart in Thunder Bay - killing time waiting for Black Betty getting her tire patched.

Giant spoon at Walmart in Thunder Bay - killing time waiting for Black Betty getting her tire patched.

After yesterday’s fiasco with Black Betty and the bailout by Friendly Manitoba, I thought I should pop by Canadian Tire and buy a pressure gauge just in case. I checked the pressure in the front tire that had gone low and sure enough, it had lost 8 psi overnight. I wasn’t sure how significant that was, but I was standing in front of a Canadian Tire Automotive Center. Surely they would know.

Turns out it was significant enough to have it checked out.

The guys at Canadian Tire took good care of me. They had me in and out as fast as they could. Another van problem solved but departing Thunder Bay was a few hours later than anticipated. Sleeping Giant Provincial Park didn’t seem that close anymore. So that’s where we went. We were tired of driving so we booked two nights.

 A small moment in time, a memory for life.

A small moment in time, a memory for life.

The sun came out just as I was setting up camp. It was so nice to see some blue skies again. That evening, just as I was cleaning up our site, I looked up and saw an incredible glow on the trees near the water. The kids and I dropped everything to go straight toward the light. We ran across our site and through a vacant site to the water’s edge. The way the light hit the kids’ skin gave them a glow that will forever be engrained in my mind. My captures would never do that moment justice, but boy was I happy.

Me+3.

It was a beautiful sunset.

 Running down to the glow.

Running down to the glow.

The next day, Sleeping Giant did not disappoint. We got up and pedaled around the campground to get our bearings. Ben was excited about the dock and his new net for catching critters. Ever since our walk in the marshes with his little buddy, the other Ben at Riding Mountain, catching stuff with nets was a marvelous pastime. We found a section of beach that was rather quiet. I made lunch while the kids played in the water.  After lunch we spent more time on the water with the paddleboard.

 Ben trying to catch critters.

Ben trying to catch critters.

 Tee-pee fire starting. Taking over Daddy's job in his absence.

Tee-pee fire starting. Taking over Daddy's job in his absence.

 Sisters on the stand up paddle board.

Sisters on the stand up paddle board.

 Catch of the day - We might go hungry tonight!!

Catch of the day - We might go hungry tonight!!

Following all the pouring rain we’d had these past three days, not to mention dealing with a stubborn van, the day turned out wonderfully.

The next morning the sky turned grey.  We loaded up and hit the road before it started to rain on us again. On our way out of Sleeping Giant while heading back to the highway, there was a sign posted for the Thunder Bay look-off. It was nine kilometers of dirt road that eventually changed to large smooth surfaced rocks, characteristic of the Canadian Shield. The lookout was outstanding.  It was fun to van-hike Black Betty and the view was well worth the detour.

 100 foot drop...and you can walk over it on the grilled-deck.

100 foot drop...and you can walk over it on the grilled-deck.

 Black Betty on the Canadian Shield - Thunder Bay look-off.

Black Betty on the Canadian Shield - Thunder Bay look-off.

Though I held my breath a little that day, Black Betty behaved nicely.

 

Further References:

Ontario Provincial Parks

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park