Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Ottawa and Highway 17 West

August 8, 2013 
My goal of writing one entry per week has changed to one entry per stop! Time flies! I think this will be our new mantra. It is already August!
We are now really travelling WEST!

While in Montreal, we had many visitors come to oohhh and aahhh over our new home. It really did fit into the driveway. We visited for a couple of weeks with Montreal friends, John’s Mum, and got several chores done for her around the property.

Then we moved on to Ottawa to the Municipal Campground on Corkstown Rd in Nepean. If you ever stop in Ottawa to camp, this is a wonderful find! It is a lovely, mainly treed, well maintained campground, and even has a shuttle bus to the City 3 times a week, [although the public transport is quite close and uses an express bus lane on the major highway, #417]. 
 Looking through the Airstream out the back Bedroom window- just trees!

Checking the internet at various camps is interesting. This one was by the comfort station! 

We spent some time visiting with John’s cousin and his family, and did some sightseeing in Ottawa. The Governor General’s house, Rideau Hall, is beautiful, with about 72 acres of rolling lawns, trees and gardens. Many of the trees have been planted by visiting dignitaries to Ottawa. The Byward Market area is another “must see”. You can wander along the streets lined with booths of fresh fruits and vegetables, beautiful jewelry, plants, clothes, and stores ranging from beautiful reclaimed teak furniture, fish markets, souvenir stores and restaurants of every kind, most with outdoor patios. Nearby are the locks, 8 in all, and the canal.

We spent the next 3 days travelling West along Hwy #17!  The first day was a beautiful, sunny day for travel! A lot of driving and not a lot of stopping! Our first stop, 280 km later, was Mattawa, where we stayed in Sid Turcotte Campground. Sid Turcotte, on the banks of the Mattawa River, is a smaller campground with a mix of sites for trailers and tents, and 3 cottages. There are also quite a few seasonal sites.

The second day began with some light rain just as we were leaving, which very quickly became a downpour. Watching the spray from the back tires pelt the stone-guards of the trailer and wrap itself around the trailer, gave us a visual on the aerodynamic shape of the trailer. The rain didn’t last long but was torrential for a while! We were surprised to see much of the area between North Bay and Sudbury, as far as Verner, was wide open, flat fertile fields, with acres of hay, some baled and some waiting to be cut. Past Verner, we were back into a mixture of small deciduous trees, and lots of fir trees, smaller, less fertile farms, and rock cuts. The road just west of Espanola was flooded about 10 inches deep for about 100 yards. The water came up over the wheels of the car ahead of us. We decided to push on to Sault Ste. Marie to try ‘Casino Camping’. Until John discovered that the casino was in the centre of downtown! We then decided to stop in Bell’s Point Beach, on land owned by the Bell family for 200 years! Once again, our Airstream was the object of much attention. We should start charging for conducted tours! We could finance our new lifestyle!

When we opened the trailer door, there was a bit of water by the Airstream mat. When I picked the mat up, the back was soaking – a leak somewhere?, we asked ourselves, but no other mats or the floor were wet??? Later, it suddenly ‘hit me’, the water we went through had come under the door. Later we discovered that the “trunk” of the trailer also some water in it.
 However, we soon dried out, and set off the next day in sunshine once more!

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