Every year I take my mom to the Parkway Cottages & Resort in Dwight, Ontario.  I went there in 2001 after my very first backcountry trip in Algonquin Park. Five days of roughing it, followed by 5 days of cottaging.  It was a great trip and since then I have been going back occasionally.

One year, I decided to take my mom for her birthday and she has wanted to go there every year since. The prices are great, the cottages are located just ten minutes outside the gate of Algonquin Park and there are lots of awesome things to see and do nearby.

This year, as my mom will be turning 70 in September, I decided instead of renting the very small 2 person cottage up the hill, I would splurge and rent the 2 bedroom cottage right on the beach.  I told mom 2 days before we left, dying to let the secret out after keeping it since March. She honestly looked like a small child being told they were going to Disney and it was the best!!!

As we had a cottage right on the water, I decided to bring my kayak so I could go paddling at sunset and sunrise and basically whenever I wanted.  I took the opportunity to do a paddle I did in 2001 and haven’t done since, to Ragged Falls and am anxious to share the trip with you as it is a very scenic one and if you have a the chance to do it, I would highly recommend it!

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It was 6:20am and the sun was just on it’s way up!  In the distance a blue heron flew over Oxtongue Lake and with the fog rising, it was a magical sight!  I got a few pictures as I headed to the mouth of the Oxtongue river, just a short fifteen minute paddle from the cottage.

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The water was extremely calm producing a mirror image on the water and it was so incredible, there were places you couldn’t tell what was land and what was water, the replication was that perfect! Pure heaven!

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After a bit of paddling I came upon the overpass for Highway 60, still very quiet at this time. The bridge made an interesting photo subject as well with the mirror making it look really neat!

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I came across what I suppose was once some type of rope swing hanging from a tree.  When I approached it, however, with he darkness still lingering, the fog lying on top of the water and the sun slightly poking around the trees, it looked incredibly eerie, almost like a noose.

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After a bit more paddling I started hearing the rumble and the loud shushing sounds of Ragged Falls. I paddling around a bend and there it was in all it’s glory!  I pulled up to the centre to take a few pics and was surprised the current wasn’t strong or pushing me away at all.  Then I paddled over to the right side to park my kayak and go for a little trek up the boulders like I did the first time I came here.  I loved climbing rocks and was excited I was here! Unfortunately, my photos do not do the falls justice, but I did my best!

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It was easy to park my kayak amongst so many rocks and shallow waters.

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Here is a short video I took of the waterfalls where I was standing.  It is very loud but also very peaceful.  I love water and all things water so I was in my glory just standing here, feeling like part of the falls myself.

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I realized it was getting late and mom was surely waiting for me to have breakfast, so I got back in my kayak, regretfully, and headed back to the cottage. Fully padding, it took me about 40 minutes to get back from where I’d started hours ago.  The sun was fully up in most of my route so I, of course, had to take just a few more pictures on the way!

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Here is a video I shot just before heading back into the lake. It was so peaceful and calm and I really could’ve stayed there all day!

Upon my return to Oxtongue Lake, I was greeted by the blue heron again.  He is not very shy and let me get up fairly close to take a photo of him/her?  Not sure how you can tell the difference? lol


After watching him for a few minutes, I paddling around the bend and saw my home for the next few days, mom standing on the beach waiting for me and taking a photo of my return back to the beach.  The mirror in the bay was spectacular and worthy of one last photo before padding in for breakfast!


After we ate, the plan was to head into Algonquin Park and go for a short hike around Peck Lake and then proceed to our favourite beach in Algonquin Park, East Beach where we would relax and go swimming and enjoy lunch by the water.  Monday we would go to Ragged Falls park by foot and see the falls from another vantage point!  Stay tuned for that post coming soon as well as  many other posts on Algonquin Park in the next little bit as August is for Algonquin!!! Yay!

I hope you enjoyed reading my post!  If you have any questions, comments, concerns, etc, please do not hesitate to send me a message. I love to hear from my readers!

Happy Hiking!

errr, or kayaking! lol

Camper Christina (kayak christina too! )