Thursday, 6 July 2017

Happy Wanderer - Hiking Algonquin Park Booth Rock Trail

Every once in a while I think I forget that the minions are only five (almost six) years old.  Because I'm so excited for them to be big kids, I'll push their boundaries.  Sometimes it totally blows up in my face.  Other times, like the case of the hike we embarked on in Algonquin park this past week, I find myself incredibly proud at the abilities, patience, and positivity of our nature loving billy goats.

The Booth Rock Trail is deemed a difficult trail, but it's only 5.1 KM long, and when I read the reviews on Trip Advisor I knew this was the hike we wanted to take.  Besides, we'd been even given coupons for day pass parking at Ontario parks in Molly and Jack's report cards, so what could go wrong?

We had forgotten exactly how much rainfall Ontario had seen this spring.  This meant what was normally dry conditions sometimes mirrored a swamp for kms on end.  This meant climbing around bogs, black flies, and more than a couple of soakers.  We ran into a family around KM 1 who were turning back and suggested we do the same.

We asked the kids if they wanted to earn their adventure badges for the day, and it turns out they were up for the challenge, just like their stubborn mom and dad.

Beauty & the Bog 
The Rock With A View

By the time our hike was complete Molly and I both had to take off our shoes for the car ride home because they were so caked in mud, and I'm not going to lie, everyone was getting a little cranky towards the end.  It was hard to stop and take a breather, other than enjoying the beautiful view from the top of the hike, because otherwise the bugs wouldn't stop gnawing at you.  But the kids didn't really complain, which meant it would be unfair for the adults to.

The climb

The Mossy Rock That Chris claimed used to be an ogre 

The only creatures we saw, other than a few other hikers, were bugs, birds, frogs, and chipmunks, although we did come across a big pile of bear droppings that made us pay extra close attention to our surroundings.

When the minions got tired and were on the verge of complaining Chris told them fairy tales, that he impressively made up on the spot, and I had Molly talk about what type of treat she wanted to reward herself for completing such a grown-up hike.  She eventually landed on freezies

Even in the heat long sleeves were a necessity.

With the current muddy condition of this trail I wouldn't recommend it to anyone under about 10 years old, that being said I'm glad we did it, and I'm so incredibly proud of Molly and Jack who stopped us complaining for two and a half hours through the wilderness.  Added bonus, we got to check one of our three summer hikes off of our summer bucket list.

The stuff postcards are made of

So proud of my little ones enjoying a snack at the top of our climb

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