It’s hot in them thar hills!

Well, you know what they say, it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity that really makes it feel hot.  There have been days here in Elliot Lake, that were around 20 degrees Celsius, and that’s certainly not hot, but when I was out walking, I came back looking like I’d taken a shower with my clothes on.

Part of the reason for that is the hilly terrain one must navigate no matter where you go around here.  It’s a lot more strenuous walking uphill, which will be at least half the total distance that I would walk on any given route.  The town of Elliot Lake is terraced into a hill, so if you come into town from one side, you can drive right onto the roof of the Algo shopping mall, where there is a parking lot.  However, if you approach from the other side, you may need to exercise your way up a number of flights of concrete stairways, in order to access the ground level of the mall.

I’ve been eager to do some serious hiking, but the humidity levels have been holding me back a bit.  It’s one thing being out in the sun on hot days, but you can’t hide from the humidity in the shade.  So, I’ve been waiting for some less humid days to do a trail that goes around Horne Lake for about 6 kms, through fairly rugged terrain.

I did do quite a long walk today, and this time I took along my older Nikon camera for some pictures as I walked.  Here they are;

I took this picture coming into the downtown area, from the top of one of those concrete stairways I mentioned earlier.  It wasn’t terribly busy at the time, but I’m sure that will change with the upcoming long weekend.

This is highway 108, that runs through Elliot Lake.  On the far side of the road is Horne Lake, and in the foreground, you can see part of a paved pathway that runs parallel to the highway.  There are a lot of these paved pathways around here, as you will see further on.

Here’s Elliot Lake, by one of the very large boat launching areas.  I see lots of people fishing along this stretch.

Now I’m back across the other side of the highway to Horne Lake.

There’s a nice boardwalk that runs part way along Horne Lake.

It goes through a swampy section, with bull rushes on both sides, and sometimes right up through the middle, as you can see.

Another view of Horne Lake.

As I mentioned before, these paved pathways are all over the place around here, and you can see that they come complete with rest stops along the way.  It makes it easy for those not wanting a rugged adventure, to get a little taste of the wilderness from a more comfortable vantage point.

The nice benches are also spaced appropriately along the way.

There are these little openings cut into the bush, down to the waters edge, all along the paved pathway.  They make for nice private fishing, or picnics spots.

Walking further in to the secluded spot.

As you can see, this would make a nice quiet fishing spot, or just a place to sit and enjoy the natural surroundings.

And if that last spot was not secluded enough for you, I found this quiet little sitting spot nearby.  If you happen to be wearing camouflage clothing, I doubt that even the bears would see you.

A few more shots of Horne Lake.

This guy is part of a monument built for the miners that worked the Elliot Lake area.  He has a light on his helmet that is on 24/7.  Here he sits with his lunch box.  Reminds me of the days when I was a working stiff, but I don’t think that I would have cared to work in mines.  I may end up in the ground one day, but I’m not going willingly.

Another miner with his daughter.

There’s a trail that goes up there somewhere, and I’ll be hiking it sometime, as soon as the humidity drops a bit.

Part of the area around the miners monument.

There are a number of these docks built along the waters edge too, for fishing or launching a canoe, or for just sitting there, and wondering “what the heck happened”.

A final look at Horne Lake, one of the many lakes in this area.  So, that’s my walk for today. Total walking distance for this walk was about 10 kms.  I’ll be going on more, and longer walks, and I’ll be sure to come back with lots of pictures to add to my blog, and stories of the one that got away, or the close call with the bear, or the time I fell off the cliff into the lake.  Stay tuned.

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