Father Son Roadtrip 2005

Road Trip 2005

The title may make this sound like an annual occurance, but in fact it is the first one. Perhaps not the last, but that is yet to be seen. My dad and I are going to be driving to Ontario (we live in Nova Scotia) and back in the course of about 10 days. Along the way there will be a few nights camping and a few nights crashing with a couple of my friends who now live in Ontario.

I am also using it as an opportunity to explore the new camera that I recently purchased. As such there will be plenty of photos available from the trip. Two years ago, my friend Chris and I went on a similar roadtrip and so I know that even if I take a lot of photos, I’m not that likely to be able to get them on my website in realtime. Or possibly at all until I get back. But I can promise to try. :)

(Photo gallery here)


August 18, 2005 02:04 (Jim)


We had a great sleep at Kate’s last night and had a leisurely breakfast. On the way to the CN Tower, Colin picked up a case for his camera at Mountain Equipment Coop. We arrived at the tower around noon and waited in line to get on the elevator for about 30 minutes. We took the 58 second ride up and spent about ½ hour at the top. On the way to 567 Queen Street West we stopped for lunch at Pizza Pizza and then went to visit Kate.

We got back at 4:30 and took a short rest before going out again to get some copies for Colin’s application for his student visa’s. I drove Colin to Mike Smit’s at 7:15 and then went to the beer store. Andy and I split on a case of beer. Patrick bar-b-qued some natural burgers for supper tonight and Kate, Patrick, Andy and I had supper together and chatted for the evening. Colin got back from Mike’s at 1:00 am.

Off to Cornwall, Ontario tomorrow.

August 17, 2005 01:34 (Jim)

A day at the beach

After a hot sleep in Chris’ apartment, Colin and I left Ottawa. On the way out, we stopped at Tim Hortons and got a tea. While we were in the line up a local radio station was giving out free mugs. 105.5 Kiss FM. We slowly made our way out of the city through some construction and took route 7 to Peterborough. We then made our way above Lake Simcoe on a slow highway and more construction. We got into Wasaga Beach around 3:00 and had a quick lunch. It took about six and a half hours from Ottawa to Wasaga Beach. We boiled up some hot dogs and were swarmed by hornets. Not a great meal. We then went for a nice long warm swim in the lake. The beach has beautiful sand and the water is warmer than our pool. You had to walk out for every to get in deep water, it was a great place. The community has lots of activities for the whole family…water slides, go-carts, paint-ball, just to name a few. It would be a wonderful place to bring the whole family.

We grabbed a bite around 7:00pm at the Morsley Street Grill and then went back in for another swim. We also took lots of pictures with our new cameras. After shooting the sunset, we headed for Toronto. Driving at very fast speeds and in the dark it was quite stressful. We stopped at a service center and bought a map of Toronto and Colin guided us into the city using Patrick’s directions. We arrived at Kate and Patrick’s before 11:00 pm and chatted for about an hour. It is now 12:30 am and time to hit the sack. Tomorrow we will be staying in Toronto for the day.

August 16, 2005 23:54 (Colin)

Tale of Two Cities - or three

If you have been following Dad’s posts, you know that we did Montreal on Monday and then headed into Ottawa to meet up with Chris. It was good to see him again, and to finally see his apartment. (Someone never uploaded photos cough cough) We went out to dinner at a greek restaurant and stuffed ourselves on Souvlaki. It has been a while since I’ve had greek food, and I expect that I should start getting used to it again. After dinner and a quick stop at the grocery store, we headed out to a movie theatre downtown and saw The Island. A good movie with a nice blend of sci-fi and action.

After a restful night on Chris’s floor, we headed out early to Wasaga Beach. This wasn’t a quick little ride however, it took about 6.5 hours to get there. It is well worth the trip out if anyone ever has the opportunity. I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before from my previous trip, but two years later, the enjoyment of the freshwater surf was still fantastic. We swam and then basked in the sun for a bit before heading into the town area to get something to eat. We decided to support a local venue and ate at the Morsley Street Grill. It was quite tasty – and filling. So we went back and swam some more. We waited until the sun set and snapped a lot of photos. Then we packed up and headed to Toronto. It is here in the “big” city that we are currently located staying with my aunt and uncle.

Tomorrow we will do Toronto – as well as hopefully pick up my passport which my mom had to courier to us.

August 16, 2005 01:41 (Jim)

Montreal & Ottawa

Colin and I got up at 7:00 am and were on the road by 8:30. I drove to Montreal and we got to the Greek consulate by 10:30 only to find that they were not open because of some holiday. We then located the Spanish consulate and Colin filled out the application form. He needs to leave his passport with them so they can stamp it for entry and exit purposes, to do that we have to go back to Montreal on Friday. We also need to get Colin some passport photos to give to the consulates. We also called the Irish Embassy in Ottawa and found out that Colin does not need a visa for Ireland.

We left Montreal around 11:45 and headed toward Ottawa. I drove to the Ontario boarder where we stopped to get some maps and ate our lunch. Colin took the wheel around 1:15 when we left the information center and stopped for gas at a station that I stopped at when we went to the Stones concert. We traveled 678 km on one tank of gas and did not have to fill up in Quebec at the high prices.

We got to Ottawa at 3:00 and walked up to the Parliament Buildings so Colin could take some pictures. My batteries died in my camera at that time. We had to move our car by 3:30 due to rush hour rules, so we called Chris at work and got directions to his place. On the way we stopped at Tim’s and I had my first Tim’s tea since Thursday. We got to Chris’ at 4:00 and waited for him to get home from work. We then went to a Greek restaurant and had a huge supper. Colin and Chris both took home doggie bags. We picked up a few things at the local A&P store and then left for the movies on St. Albert St. We saw The Island. It was very good…lots of excitement and action. Back to Chris’ by midnight and updating the travel log…Off to Wasaga Beach tomorrow.

August 14, 2005 23:16 (Colin)

Camping 001

Well this is our first night at a campground on this trip and everything is running smoothly. We travelled 846 km today and are now just outside Drummondville, QC (at the Campground des Voltigeures). With only one hour to Montreal, we should have no trouble getting into the city to visit the Consulates in order to seek out my student visas. Like the brilliant person that I am I didn’t think to bring my passport even though I had the presence of mind to bring my other paperwork. However, we are going to start the process and see if we can get some straight answers.

If you were to come across us now you would find the two of us sitting in front of a dying fire with our laptops in front of us madly typing in these posts. But when better to do it than before heading to bed while the information is fresh. I think that Dad is likely recounting the daily events in more detail so I won’t duplicate that work, but I will say that it was a great day even though we spent about 11 hours in the car. It wasn’t very sunny today and it even thought about raining around the NB/Quebec border. But at the edge of the overcast there was always blue sky just out of reach. It made for some interesting cloud patterns. I heard it was supposed to rain tonight, but that was in NB, and while I can’t see any stars, above us, I don’t get the feeling that it is going to rain, and I can usually tell. We erected our tent under a number of trees, so I’m hoping that even if it does rain, we shouldn’t have too wet of a tent to pack up in the morning. :)

August 14, 2005 23:09 (Jim)

A day in the car

Colin and I got up around 7:30am and quietly got ready to head out on our journey. I said goodbye to Dad, Bev, Angela and Dave on our way out the door. We left the Reach at 8:52am and headed for the Westfield ferry. Colin drove for the first leg and I was in charge of the navigating. Our first little error was that we turned left and not right after getting off the ferry. That only cost us about 5 minutes in travel time. We headed north on the Trans Canada Highway and made good time. Our goal is to only do the speed limit on all major highways. It saves gas and we will not get stopped for speeding. We passed at least 5 police cars so far and did not have to worry about them, what a different feeling. We were also the slowest vehicle on the road.

Our first stop was at the longest covered bridge in the world in Hartland, New Brunswick. We took a few pictures and bought some ice for the cooler. 15 minutes later we were back on our way “up river”. We drove until we were hungry and stopped at Four Falls and made some sandwiches for lunch. We were next to a campground and waterslide park. Too bad it was so cold out. It was just starting to rain and got quite chilly.

It was my turn to drive and I headed for Quebec. We made a short stop at Edmonston for gas and bought some soap at Shoppers. Our next stop was inside the Quebec border at the information center. We picked up a map of Quebec and Montreal as well as a campground information book. That proved very useful, as that is how we found our campground for tonight. After driving to Riviere du Loup we took the scenic route. We drove down the 132 and enjoyed the scenery along the St. Lawrence River. We stopped for ice cream in one of the small towns. Around 6:00 pm EST we stopped at Levi, just outside Quebec city and picked up some groceries at the IGA store. Colin then drove the rest of the way. We stopped for supper at a highway stop and boiled some hotdogs. Very nutritious. We then took route 20 until we stopped for the night at a great campground near Drummondville called Des Voltigeurs. We are only about an hour from Montreal. A total of 846 kilometers and 12 hours in the car, a long day by anyone’s standards.

August 13, 2005 23:25 (Jim)

A day at the Reach

It’s 11:00 pm and Colin and I are back from Dave and Terry’s party. It was great so see so many friends from years gone by. Ron and Beth Moore were there as well as Hazen and Marilyn Scarth. I haven’t seen Ron for at least 20 years.

The day at the Reach was sunny and warm with a few clouds in the morning. We went swimming a couple of times and went to town to pick up some camping supplies that we forgot.

All in all a great day.