Un lugar donde un hombre de Florida (Uruguay), la capital de la Piedra Alta, cuenta de todo un poco, sobre su pueblo, su vida, sus viajes, su familia y más que nada, sobre su Florida natal. Tambien mucho sobre mi querido Camino de Santiago.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Three days of glory (English version)

To see the pictures refer to the Spanish version. Below.
Translation done as requested by several English speaking friends. 

Three days of traveling with my granddaughter Lara, who likes to explore and discover new places, as much as I do. We did about 560 kilometres to reach Haileybury a small town in northern Ontario, on the shores of Lake Temiskaming. We toured their surroundings, all empty and still, almost like visiting a very well-kept place, but in reality it is almost a ghost town, it is evident that they live from tourism in summer and winter, all based on beaches, hunting and fishing in summer and under the ice in winter. This year the Covid 19 has all of this desolate.

The next day we start our route south, in Cobalt we visit the ruins of the old silver mines, considered national heritage, where alone and with complete freedom, we visit ancient tunnels, open-pit perforations 150 or more meters deep, ruins of the buildings where they processed what they excavated to extract the silver, workshops, warehouses where the miners slept. All this distributed in different nuclei around a lake and a hill, with the car we moved from one place to another, where each mining company operated. As always, we explored everything we could and Lara climbed the ruins of the buildings and the machinery rusted by the passage of time.
I think we visited nine of the 16 mines listed in total. They were hours of total rejoicing trying in our minds to relive those past times, the life and sacrifice of the miners. Supposedly there are more than 24 kilometres of underground tunnels, in one of them, it seemed that the forest had air conditioning, it was cool and windy, unlike the rest of the area, at the entrance of a tunnel we found snow and ice accumulated, in a nearby poster you could read that this tunnel of more than three kilometres long, had exits on both sides of the hill, this created a constant air circulation, which cooled in the deepest parts of the tunnel, thus maintaining snow or ice most of the year. From the surrounding forest it rose due to the temperature difference, a fog that made the place seem a little spooky.
Another time on the road, this time until you reach Temagami to visit an observation tower, of the fire guards, located on a promontory of respectable height and at the top this tower, which you can climb to see the beautiful landscape for many kilometres around. Of course Lara climbed to the top, I stayed in a beautiful viewpoint many steps below.
Already a little tired, we continue traveling to the town of Burks Falls where Lara had to stay an hour in a quiet place for a video conference with one of her teachers, since the children are receiving their homework and classes via the internet. Along with a river and a covered bridge, with plenty of shade and tranquility, she did her thing and I dedicated myself to preparing a staff that I had cut in the area of ​​the mines. Every time we go on an adventure together, I cut the best stick I can find and after peeling and sanding it, I put the date and the name of the place, so that we can remember it.
Finished his task, we decided to continue to stay overnight in Hunstville, about 60 kilometres from Algonquin Park, where the next day we wanted to visit him for the umpteenth time, since it is our favorite place and that this year, due to the pandemic, he was not allowed to visit and we missed the two camps that we traditionally do in February and March and also the one in May.
When the afternoon was beginning we visited different places in Hunstville, appreciating beautiful views of the lakes that surround it and eating fried fish, sitting on a pier, since the restaurants are not yet open, you can only buy the takeaway food, so , on the floor next to the water, first class.
The 8 chimes had not yet sounded, when we were already on our way to the park, we were very surprised about the totally lonely roads, since, at this time, there are usually crowds, but again Covid did his thing here too. In 80 kilometres we did not see more than 10 cars and about 10 or 15 trucks loaded with wood. Upon arriving at our first destination, Lake of Two Rivers, with a smile from ear to ear, we began to hike one of our favorite trails, both winter and summer. There was no one else, it was three and a half kilometres of total serenity, you could only hear the sounds of the sticks, the songs of other birds and the typical sounds of a solitary mountain. When we reached the top it seemed that we were seeing it for the first time, since it is a place where there are always people, this time it was just me and Lara and we enjoyed it to the fullest.
Then we went to Opeongo Lake, about 30 and a half kilometres away, from this place the canoes leave that go to the interior of the park that has a total area that would compare favorably with many small countries. With an area of 7,653 square km, but with zero permanent human inhabitants. High density of bears, wolves, moose, deer, ducks, beavers, thousands of lakes and rivers, canoeing routes and impressive sub boreal fauna. In short ... an earthly paradise.
As a closing of the trip and already ready to return home, sitting next to the gigantic Lake Opeongo, we cooked some noodles with tuna and olive oil, which were delicious, we ate, with a full belly we slept a little, we reminded ourselves of how happy they were. we can make these trips, just the two of us in a relationship of grandfather and granddaughter that has no comparison with anything.
As it was the day of San Cono, I thanked the saint and God for these happy times, that for a person who, like me, who is closer to the harp than to the guitar, are of immense happiness.

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