Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The heart of the Bay

Taking an airplane tour of one of your favourite places is one of those things you say you'll do at some point, but never quite get around to. In recent months, I've been working hard at taking on some of those things (I've also recently taken up the guitar).

That's why I decided to get Amy (and by extension myself) a floatplane tour of the 30,000 Islands area of Georgian Bay, where we do the majority of our sea kayaking, from Georgian Bay Airways as a gift.

Here are a few of the highlights:

Killbear Park looks lush and green from above, thanks to a rainy late spring. Killbear is one of the crown jewels of Ontario's provincial park system. From up here, it's not hard to see why.

The windswept outer islands give you a sense of the power of the bay's prevailing westerly winds. Yet life still clings to these isolated patches of rock. From above, you can also see the rocks lurking just below the surface, just waiting to snag wayward boaters (or sea kayakers).

The cottages disappear when you fly out over Massassauga Provincial Park. Its dozens of isolated lakes are only accessible by foot or paddle power.

Parry Sound's iconic railway bridge marks the beginning and the end of the flight. Thanks to the good folks at Georgian Bay Airways for a memorable experience. A super kickoff to yet another paddling season on the bay.