When I left off in Chapter Six Bob and I had to turn back from a large lake as it was a particularly windy day and the waves on the lake were quite big. On our first attempt our canoe kept tipping from side to side and taking on water so we returned to the shore. Bob was more experienced with canoes and he found a solution to our problem. He retreated into the forest and came back with a six foot long dry long that was quite light and easy to carry. Bob attached the log to the side of our canoe with two thick branches at each end, you might have seen boats with these attached or even canoes, they are called outriggers. When we tried to cross the lake the outrigger kept our canoe more stable and we were able to finally make it across.
Once we were across Bob’s map indicated a large stretch of narrow river with numerous lengthy curves with no rapids but a large waterfall. After the waterfall the river would continue it’s winding path and lead us to a final two mile portage to a large lake and across to our destination the department of lands and forest docks and marine base from where Bob would call his waiter friend to pick us with my car. I have to say I was a little sad our adventure was going to come to an end but we carried on paddling on the winding river. We heard the waterfall long before we saw it. We were forced to portage around the fall for fear of going over. When we consulted Bob’s map we saw two intersections of portage trails marked by a blaze indicating two routes to the other side of the river. We discussed it and decided to take the path that stayed closest to the waterfall as from the sound of the rushing water, it was a big one and we curious to see it so we took the shorter path that bore right and led to the waterfall. Had we taken the left trail we would have missed a sight we would never forget for the rest of our lives.
The trail took us on a steep decline for a quarter of a mile which was hard to negotiate while carrying a canoe over our shoulders and then through very thick wooded brush. We were always within earshot of the waterfall but had yet to lay eyes on it. Then a clearing opened up from the trees and we saw a very sturdy wooden bridge which stretched over the run off from the falls and provided a spectacular view of those waterfalls. The path was close enough to the falls that the mist from the water rose into the air and when the sunlight hit it it was like walking through a rainbow. The falls were wider than they were tall and fell over bare rock so the current moved very swiftly. I thought to myself it was a good idea to portage around it before the current got the better of us as we surely wouldn’t have survived if we accidentally went over.
After we crossed that bridge we saw one of the most beautiful sights I had ever seen; two magnificent log cabins like the structures you would see at the centre of a rich estate they looked absolutely perfect and a comfort for our sore eyes as we had been living rough in the bush for days on end. The cabins were made of peeled logs with a shiny shellac finish that seemed to glitter in the sun. We had finally come to Rapid Inn.
To be continued soon…