Saturday, July 24, 2010

When in Rossport, ON

July 24, 2010 by LW

Lot's to fill in from the last post from Grand Marais, MN. After much sunny and scorching hot weather along Minnesota's shore, we finally started seeing some waves and thunderstorms. First right before Grand Portage (where we got our first cold beer at the casino's bar) and then a couple days after we entered into Canada past the Pigeon River.

Searched for and found our first sauna. Well, the location of it at least. It burned down some time ago. Made a heinous crossing from Pie Is. across Thunder Bay to the Sleeping Giant where we got caught in and rode the highest winds and biggest waves of our paddling lives. Surfed onto the best beach we could find just past Thunder Cape. We both got tossed in the white water and ended up on the beach with an assortment of gear laying around us. Everything accounted for and nothing broken (boats or otherwise) we waited out the next two days of a wind advisory hiking the Sleeping Giant.

Finally into Silver Islet. My, what a fantastic little gem! The folks of that summer community (and winter for a lonely few) were so friendly and helpful. Lorne and Joan Saxberg run the General store and put us up next door. We tasted delicious homemade soups and Joan's fresh "Sin" buns and pushed off with good advice from fellow local paddler Bill Climie (a big Thanks to you, sir!).

On our next crossing past the opening to Black Bay we paddled by a swimming moose also making the distance. By then we were in the thick of a large archipelago that stretches from SI up to and just past Rossport which includes around 700 islands. We did the second half of this stretch through patches of fog and without an actual navigational chart in front of us, only the pictures we took of some sailors charts in SI and our trusty tourist "Circle Tour" brochure map from Lake Superior Magazine.

Still, we made it to Rossport last night where we happened to land at the public harbour which is right in front of the Superior Outfitters where our next cache was waiting for us. In a huge box. Mostly because it also included our new solar charging equipment.

We met some new friends and talked about our trip on the dock last night. They lent us their truck to drive into town (Schreiber) for laundry, groceries, and beer. Tonight we hope to paddle with them and their voyageur canoe under the full moon to the sound of their traditional paddling songs. We'll have a few beers with Ray who is hosting us at the shop and probably press on tomorrow morning.

A great expedition indeed.

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