I woke up to a gorgeous day Saturday and headed out to Mactier to do an address change on my drivers License. When I got back to my place in Port Carling, I asked my roomates what they had planned for the day? I had decided to do the bigger loop at Hardy Lake as I’d done the smaller one when I’d first arrived and loved it there. Both Molly and Debra were in, so we got our gear together, packed up some food and water and headed to the park.
When I began writing this post, I was talking to the girls about a foundation we saw while on our hike (to be shown down the page a bit). I did some research and found lots of interesting information about Hardy Lake and a proposal they had to make it a recreational park with change rooms, washrooms, a parking lot for 150 people, etc, etc. I was extremely upset as I have found a house that has potential in the area and didn’t want to see all that happen here. Then I saw the date on the report and it was from the mid eighties!!! I wonder what ever happened to that proposal and if it’s still on someones list of to do’s?? I certainly hope not because this park is so awesome the way it is!
The trail starts out on the old road and is very easy at that point. You follow it along until it narrows a bit and then you have the choice to go right to do the 3km loop or continue straight to do the 8km loop. We chose to go straight.
The trail is very pretty and you are rewarded with beautiful lake views along the way.
Across the lake from where we were here, is a spot that we go swimming at when we are looking for a secluded natural area to swim at. It’s about a 15 minute walk in to that spot. (rock pictured above across the lake).
We came across this really cool tree that a beaver, I assume, doesn’t want to be standing any longer. I was quite amazed it hadn’t fallen yet and my friend Molly, shown here, gave it a good push, but it didn’t budge.
We took our time enjoying the forest, walking on logs and acting like kids exploring in nature. It was a good time!
There were a lot of neat things to see, my friend the big rock, ground spider webs (photo by Debra) and cool stumps.
We came up to a cool looking spot and decided it was time for a swim, so we took a break and cooled off. After a snack we got back on the trail and came upon some interesting bridges.
At the shoreline there were a large amount of lil tadpoles hanging out in the shallow warm water. Too cute!
Along the trail we found these interesting plaques full of information. It was a good reason to stop for a micro break too! LOL
At the next juncture there was a map so we could find ourselves and ensure we were going the right way.
We continued on and found an old foundation of a building. I couldn’t find a plaque providing information about it, so we made up some fun scenarios while we explored. (this is the foundation I wrote about at the start of the post.) Shortly after that we found a nice place along the shoreline to sit and use the water filter. I figured it was a lot smarter to carry the filter than extra water on a longer hike, as the filter is not very heavy.
Deb found these teeny tiny little acorns. I don’t remember ever seeing them as babies.
I was really enjoying this loop of the trail. There were a lot of signs and the trail was very easy to follow.
I was also enjoying all the bridges along the route. There is something about a bridge that is special and I’ve always admired them.
See… cool bridge!!! LOL
Were were also lucky enough to find two ripe blueberries! YES ! TWO!!!! So awesome and delicious!! (heart photo collaborated with Debra Silver).
It seemed no matter what part of the trail you were on, there was something unique or beautiful to look at. I was very much enjoying my time here.
My mom would love these!!! HAHAHAHA!!! She hates bridges almost as much as I like them!
We came across another great spot to stop for a swim, so we went for it!
I was challenged to jump off the rock, so after a swim check to make sure it was deep enough … (always do that!!) …. I jumped in. (Photo Credit to Molly Costello. 🙂
We enjoyed the sun and the warmth and the warm water. I did my favourite floating thing for a while and enjoyed the peace and quiet.
After our swim we got back on the trail and took the side trail to the parking lot. I have done the 3km loop a few times and figured it was time to head back. We’d been in the park for about 4 or 5 hours and I was ready to have a good meal and put my feet up.
The way out, like the rest of the trail, was stunning! There was a considerable increase in bug activity at this part of the trail, but otherwise it wasn’t too buggy overall.
After going through a few areas of open rock, you find yourself at the parking lot.
I really like this park. I have a feeling I will visit here over and over again, and this will be one of my favourite places near home to spend time and go swimming.
I hope you enjoyed your hike with me and will come back and visit again! If you have any questions comments or just want to say hi, please leave a message. My replies may be a bit slow the next little bit as I am aiming to spend as much time as possible outside, but, I will get back to you!!!