2011 Vacation Day 12 - Tuesday: Great swimming hole, but a tad cool...

Leaving Pancake Bay this morning, heading towards Killarney. We are stopping at The Chutes provincial park in Massey, probably 2/3 of the way to Killarney. Don't know what to expect of this park, but it is on a river and has some nice looking falls. The winds were high on the lake last night, and the breakers were crashing loudly against the shore. It was really neat to listen to during the night.
We walked the beach before leaving, and although the winds had calmed somewhat, the waves were still pretty impressive. We have heard from other campers that the waves can be massive, particularly in the late fall.

Finally hitched up and on the road by 10:30. I figure it will take us about 4 hours to get to Chutes, what with gas and coffee stops. The drive along Hwy 17 here is quite nice, long rolling hills and lots of waterfront stretches. At one point the Hwy follows the Blind River, and it is really scenic. Sure enough, pulled in at 2:30, as predicted. Not a busy campsite, there are a lot of empty spots, which is surprising as it is quite a nice spot. Got set up, then headed for the beach for a swim. The swimming area is really different. It is the proverbial "swimming hole". A large pool of water, a sand island and spit, all at the base of a river waterfall. The water is quite cool, more so than even Superior, but nice once you get used to it. Funny thing, once you get used to any water, it feels nice, but perhaps for different lengths of time. A strong current was formed because of the falls. If you stayed still floating on the noodle, it would move you in a circular manner towards downstream. A couple of times Dale forgot about this and ended up out in the pool, well over her head. That's when I got to swim over and tow her back.

Sat on the beach for a while, and a few more people arrived, probably just getting in after the drive. One older couple went straight into the water, totally undeterred by the temperature. He came out after a bit and chatted to us as he went by. A very animated guy with a heavy Irish accent. He said "Luvely day isn't it, but then every day is luvely when you are not working...even if it's raining'. Very true words. From his heavy accent we expected him to be visiting right from Ireland, but turns out he and his wife live in Wasaga Beach. I commented that Wasaga Beach can be a lively place, and he replied with a twinkle in his eye 'only the bikini end of the beach', and that he lives in the 'old people' end of the beach.   

Another family arrived, led by a woman and a couple of kids. From what we could hear as they approached, they are definitely here from Italy. The woman started to set up right in front of us, until her husband arrived and told her to move aside, and from what we could gather, he was telling her that she was blocking our view of the falls. She started to apologize to us for this, but we told her it was fine, set up anywhere. The husband and kids hit the water fast, while she took pictures of them. When she was ready to go in, she just pulled off her t-shirt and then to our surprise, her bra, then casually put on her bikini top, and went for a swim. There is nothing like a bit of European culture to perk up a Northern Ontario beach.

Bruce and Judy, the couple we met yesterday at Pancake Bay, told us of a nice place to eat in Massey called The Dragonfly. Dale made reservations when we arrived, so we headed over for dinner. A small spot right in town, but the menu was diverse and the food was very tasty. Tomorrow we head for Killarney.


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