Through the eyes of an intern...
After it was all said and done, it took us 5 hours of paddling (one way), to canoe roughly 15 km through the winding lakes of Algonquin Park. This may seem a little daunting, but from the moment we hit the water, it felt like we were in another world. From the fresh park air, to the clear blue water that is seemingly absent from city and suburban life, the paddle seemed like a getaway in itself! When we finally found a spot to set up camp, I was amazed by the tranquillity of the lake we were on. There were no buzzing vehicles, ringing cell phones, or loud music. All you could hear were loons on the lake, canoes rubbing against the rocks, and the crackling of the nice fire we had proudly built.
Since we are constantly inundated with the sights and sounds of our technological world, we often forget how truly important this silence can be. I had gone camping a couple times before, but I had never been portaging, and I have to say that there is a big difference! Not only is portaging a test of your physical endurance – the paddling, carrying the canoe across the “portage”, and carrying everything else that was in the canoe- it is also a test of your ability to work as a team with those you are travelling with. I spent 3 days on a small lake in Algonquin Park and I am itching to go back and travel even further! If you like nature and don't mind spending a couple days away from you cell phone and computer, I would highly recommend portaging!
If it seems too much for you to try all at once, don't worry! You can try one of Algonquin Park's several “drive-to” camp grounds. After this, if you think your ready to go portaging, visit their website: http://goo.gl/mONTiu to learn more about: rental costs, park protocol, and canoe availability.