Offroad Escapades

When the Journey is more Exciting than the Destination

 
We love the outdoors and explore the roads less travelled with our Jeep.

We live in Mississauga, 35 km West of Toronto and follow the call of the North whenever we can. When we are not travelling, the Jeep and Camping Trailer take their fair share of time and money. The maintenance and upgrades keep us out of trouble and safe. It doesn't always work like that, and that's when the stories are born.
"These are our escapades"
Jeep No Doors

2020 - Travel in Ontario
We'll be "counting" the Forest Service Roads along Hwy 11

2019 - Great Winter and the long way to the West Coast
Windy Lake Provincial Park

First trip in January to Huntsville. If grey is a colour, we had it all. The weather wasn't cooperating. But the evening was magical.
A few weeks later we were in luck at Windy Lake Provincial Park. We arrived in Sudbury at the end of a major snow dumping. The skies cleared for us. The picture above says it all.
Mid March it was time again for the 2nd annual Winter Camping solo trip.
Jeep Escapades
The summer was in full swing and we took the long way to the West Coast. From Mississauga to Sault Ste Marie, Thunder Bay, Kenora. Crossed the prairies and spent a few days in Penticton. We settled for several days in Whistler. There we heard stories about Bella Coola and we just had to go there. That's when Plan A failed and we had to switch to Plan B. After several days to work out Plan B in Bella Coola, we took the ferry to Vancouver Island and back home the long way.
Bella Coola is amazing, we saw grizzlies close up and countless bald eagles. We climbed an awesome Forest Service Road to see the highest freefalling waterfall in Canada. Almost made it there, unless we count the endless rain as a freefalling waterfall.
Young grizzly in Bella Coola


2018 - 125 Years Ontario Provincial Parks
It is February, it is cold and no more excuses. I postponed Winter Camping for way too many years. I have all the equipment but nobody that shares my enthusiasm, not even my wife. So I went alone. It looks as if this will be a yearly occurrence from now on.
It was also the winter when I started ice fishing. My definition of ice fishing is simple. Drill a hole and fish. No shelter, no power auger. Mind you, a snowmobile would be nice at times.

Victoria Day Long Weekend and start of the camping season. We went back to Marten River Provincial Park.
On Saturday we drove to Red Squirrel Road.
On Sunday we explored the Finlayson Lake and found perfect condtions.
Water runoff in Ice

In August we visited the Maritimes. One of the destinations ignored on our whish list for way too many years. This was also the first longer road trip to smoothen out some of the wrinkles with the camping trailer and the Jeep.
The Maritimes - what a great trip it was.

Lobster Trap

On the way back we took a detour via Esker Lakes Provincial Park to stock up on blueberries. But not without exploring a new raod, the Tower & Barnet Lake Road just north of the park.
Blueberries

2017 - Canada's 150th Birthday
Victoria Day Long Weekend in 2017, the first time we took the trailer out for a few days. We spent the time at Marten River Provincial Park.


End of July we stopped at Finlayson Point Provincial Park for one night.
Next morning we continued to Nagagamisis Provincial Park where we stayed for a few days.Nagagamisis Camp Site

End of August, we found the perfect place and time for blueberries at the Esker Lakes Provincial Park.

2016 - Cross Canada Trip and the Year of the Camping Trailer This summer was the first Cross-Canada trip with the Jeep - and the fifth time we drove the 4,500 km from Mississauga Ontario to Whistler British Columbia (BC).
We knew that we'll hit a lot of bugs crossing the Prairies, so the first upgrade was a Mesh Grill to protect the radiator.

We made it to BC and back without incident and returned with lots of good memories. One of them was the Poison Mountain trip.
We stayed at hotels and used up all our Reward Points to pay for part of this trip. We saw many camping trailers, from big fifth-wheel that made our home look like a shack to small tear-drop models that provide shelter and minimal cooking comfort.
Poison Mountain Rock Slide
It was Time to seriously investigate Camping Trailers.
End of September, we already found a used 13 foot Prolite Mini in perfect condition.

2015 - The Jeep
At the end of October we went to our dealership and found a Jeep Sahara Unlimited. A 2013 model owned by a real estate agent. No modifications and no off-roading done. Didn't take long until we made some Upgrades and planned our first trip.

Back in the last century
We had a tent, we had a canoe and Algonquin Provincial Park was only a short trip. Our first visits were back in the late 80's, it was not as busy as it is today. Today during peak season it is often difficult to get a reservation.

In 2010 we documented and publish the the first set of Algonquin Park Trail Head coordinates. Nobody published any GPS coordinates back then, it was still very new. It was the time when car GPS became affordable and it was the early days of Smartphones. Most people didn't know what to do with GPS. We witnessed many changes. Not just in technology, but also up at Algonquin Park.

Looking through some old pictures, we just had to show the decaying train trestle on Cache Lake. The first images we took with the bridge mostly intact were from 1990, the last one below from a few years ago. Yeah, it's falling apart.
Cache Lake Train Trestle

A growing number of website visitors were looking for information about the hiking trails and GPS coordinates. This lead to a Canada wide collection of links and GPS coordinates. This collection is growing as we find new places.
Be aware that the GPS coordinate collection is exactly that, a few pictures of the trail head and a link for the GPS. It is not our primary intention to document the trails neither do we claim that we hiked all the trails. Although we did most of them.

In summer 2011 on our way to British Columbia, we visited the Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba. Yup, the Dodge Dakota did the cross-Canada trip a few times. We added these trail head GPS coordinates to the collection.
Riding Mountain National Park

Next Page: Tower & Barnet Lake Road

First published on October 23, 2018

Timestamp: 12/07/2019 12:05:30 AM EST [on srv7cps]
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Be aware, the trail suggestions here are not without danger. There is usually no cell phone connection and help may be unavailable. Don't travel alone. Let somebody know where you're going and when you'll be back. Keep track of your trip with a Car GPS that stores your route. It will help you return to the place from where you started.