Monday, January 24, 2011

Day 7-8: Bountiful Returns

Ah day 7, a well deserved sleep in all around. Certainly for the fellows who missioned out on a fools errand. Our mission for today was relatively simple. A short paddle, followed by a short portage back to North Tea Lake, and then another short paddle to find a campsite. So with a fairly easy day a head we took a leisurely approach to the morning.

Sometime after we had all be up for a while shooting the shit, we made up a small fire for coffee and porridge.

After a good few hours spent goofing off, and generally enjoying ourselves, it was time to leave this site behind and move onward.
And for the record, no it is never too early. When your in the woods its 5pm around the clock.

This was Chris' attempt to clear away the low hanging branches that were hiding the portage sign.

I've been told I should send this photo in to old spice for use in their advertisement campaigns.

This was a bit of a tricky portage. Whilst it was fairly short, maybe half a km, it essentially I large hill.

When we reached North Tea Lake again, we began inspecting campsites.
This one was nice from the out side, but very dense and small when you get into it.
After checking out a couple, we ended up at this one. It was on an island, and absolutely massive. It was a bit of a hill up, but it had a nice sand beach to dock the canoes on.

After getting set up and seeing a spot of lunch in, it was time to soap up, and get in a bit of swimming.
After the swim, Chris and Kel ventured out for another round of fishing. Thus far a venture that had been very unsuccessful. They returned as sun was setting maybe an hour later, with not one, but two small mouth bass! Apparently after catching one, Chris wanted to see if Kel could bait one, and shortly after recasting his line he pulled in a second.

Ah time for what I do best. Dinner! Whilst Chris went down to gut the fish, I started cookin up some sides. In one pot we have tomato sauce with salami boiling away, next to some make shift french fries.

After gutted, the fish were placed back into my capable hands to fillet, season, and cook.

Even to say myself it was a truly inspired effort to cook even such a simple meal on such a medium. And there really isn't anything like fresh food, even despite not being much of a fish eater.

We stayed up only briefly after eating, had a few drinks, and went to get a good night in for the long day ahead of us.

We arose to a particularly chilly and windy morning.

Spirits for what ever reason were rather low this particular morning. Whether it was the thought of going back home, or the run down of a tough week, or the fact that we had to paddle a huge lake, a long river, and a second, smaller lake, with the wind and current coming against us is uncertain. More then likely a combination of all three.

As you can see, Renars is ecstatic to get moving.

It was a tough paddle, and very tiring for already very tired and sore muscles. However we persevered and made it to the river. Ah the lazy river, that wonderful river we first set paddle on 8 days prior. With the wonderful memories of full bellies, and lazing down the river with beers and cigarettes 2 provisions we had long since been out of.

We spend a good long while going through the river, but inevitably made it to the lake. As tired and sore and physically and mentally drained as we all were by this point, the ability to see our final destination was re-invigorating. One last strong push, in what felt like a small eternity we made land, and civilization!
We unloaded quickly.

Got the canoes attached.

And after recording our closing thoughts, we said a fond farewell to one another, and piled into our separate vehicles.

Now with nothing left of this trip but the dwindling hours of open road, and our thoughts and reflections. It never ceases to amaze me the thoughts one has of everything in their life after trips as such. The ways you delve into who you are, and the problems of your life. The decisions you make about how to change your life when you return. A new job, a better eduction, to tell those you love how you feel. Whilst going through the rigors of camping, you are never left the time to reflect or to think of really anything other then what you are doing. Too busy working your ass off to get to your next destination, your eyes too focused on taking in the surroundings, and at times, just trying to survive. So it always feels profound to me just how much everything under the sun gets taken into consideration upon that brief trip home.

Thanks for reading the posts for these lovely, beautiful, heinous, melancholy, tough, and at times bitter and resentful 8 days.

Catch ya on the flip side,

Yours truly,

Tim, the Devils Advocate

I would also like to thank Renars Dimza for use of his plentiful picture collection.

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