2013 Trip 10: a spectacular autumn weekend

Murphys Point - Sept 2013

Friday
Close to the end of the season now, we are heading out for the second weekend in the row. The weather for the entire weekend is forecasted to be sunny and warm, around 70F. What a bonus compared to last weekend. It is a short drive here, and we have booked a nice site.

As I have mentioned before, this park is very heavily treed, and as such, is pretty dark. This time we reserved one of the sites closer to the lake, a little more open, so it should be brighter than previous visits. Late getting out of work today, so late getting on the road. We arrived well after dusk, not totally dark, but enough to need the headlamps to help set up. The site is pretty level, and although a little short on privacy, we will benefit from the additional light. I suspect we will always try to aim for a spot along this little stretch, as the others we have been on can be too gloomy.

Bit of a problem with the electrical outlets. When I tried to use the 30 amp, I found that the plug had been installed upside down. The blades are generally at the bottom, where the wire enters. The 30 amp plugs are quite large, including the wire, so it is not as simple as just flipping over the plug like you could on a toaster plug. The cover of the outlet, once lifted, prevented me flipping the plug. Without electricity our weekend will not be as comfortable so in the dark I looked to figure out a fix.  Approaching the issue now armed with a screwdriver, I was able to slide the hinge pin of the cover and this allowed me to remove it completely. Once out of the way, the outlet became useful again. Naturally, the cover will go back on when we leave. This issue will make it on the comment card as I'm sure we are not the only ones that have experienced this problem at this site.

The temp is dropping so we fired up the heat pump, which took the chill off quickly. Camping in the shoulder season, it is nice to have the electrical, because we now know the load on the battery for lights and heat can be significant.

Saturday
Nice clear skies when we woke up. A little cool, around 50F, so we used the furnace to heat the Alto up. The move to the larger output model was a good one, as it made the trailer very comfortable in about 40 minutes. This is quite reasonable, especially if you are without electricity, Slow heat always beats out no heat. Overhead this weekend are the sounds of flocks of Canada geese flying south, making their crescendo geese calls as they go. Guessing that they are taking advantage of the sunny warm weekend to make their head start, not unlike as we humans do.

Heavy mist over the lake this morning, Dale went outside to take some photos.



The Big Rideau, the lake this park is on, is the largest lake on the Rideau Canal system which extends from Ottawa to Kingston. The scenic town of Westport is at the head of the lake and is a destination for those that like to check out quaint towns. We normally only leave our campgrounds if the weather is not good, to break up a rainy day. When the weather is nice like this weekend is we like to stay around the campsite and enjoy the full camping experience. Our only plan is to sit outside in the sun next to the water's edge taking in the views.

Scooted up to the park store to pick up some firewood. We thought we would have a fire in the afternoon while we had our late lunch. We had some New Brunswick smoked salmon fillet which we had picked up at the Saint John market when we were there this summer.  We placed the salmon on tin foil over the fire to heat it up a bit and to give it some extra smoking. We got a nice birch fire going, and the salmon was awesome on some sliced ciabatta bread with cream cheese.
There is a dock just below us, so we took our chairs and sat out in the sun for the longest time, enjoying our before dinner G&T. We are trying a new tonic water in our G&T's called 'Fever Tree' which a friend of ours recommended. It is quite nice, with a good hint of quinine along with an interesting aroma and subtle sweetness. It may not take the place of Schweppes, but certainly a nice change of taste.
this little visitor was an unusual red colour
Back to the dock for the sunset, not spectacular, but nice. The temp dropped like a stone once the sun hit the treeline, driving us into the warmth of the heat pump. After the cold, wet experience of last weekend, we are soaking up all the comfortable heat available this weekend. The salmon lunch filled us up, so we passed on making up a dinner. We did though enjoy the pavlovas and fresh strawberries we brought along for the dessert.

Sunday
Woke up to another beautiful sunny morning, the warm breeze bowing the autumn leaves off the trees.
For breakfast we toasted over the fire again, this time english muffins and then topped them up with cream cheese and strawberry preserves. Very decadent. We then realized how easy this weekend was meal-wise by cooking over the fire and keeping it simple.  Of course on a rainy cold weekend this would not work well, but on a nice warm weekend it works great. Something to keep in mind for next year's camping season. This weekend was a spectacular weekend, sunny and warm...a nice treat.

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