We have been wanting to go to Iroquois Lake and explore the two large islands in it for quite some time. Saturday morning, September the fifth, 2009, it was finally the day. As we were expecting some friends to arrive in the early afternoon we decided to use the outboard rather than sail to be able to be back in time. We hooked the trailer up to the van and drove over to Pelican Cove on the south end of Iroquois and launched the boat there.
We motored over to the first island and followed along the shore looking for someplace interesting to land. It reminded me a lot of sea kayaking in BC and following along the shore looking for a place to eat lunch or camp for the night. The fact that it was a cloudy overcast day with a few spits or rain now and then only strengthened that perception.
We spotted a good place with a sandy shore and ran up to the beach. It wasn’t as sandy as it looked and was quite muddy and soft but not a problem. We all got out and started looking around. The beach was lined with large piles of reeds that had washed ashore. Hunter, the naturalist, immediately started poking around in them and immediately exclaimed, “Are there ever a lot of spiders in here!” So, we called the island Spider Island. I walked around in the bush taking pictures and looking around. This place really had a wild feel about it which was very neat.
We left and headed over to the next island. We followed the shore to the northernmost point and as we turned the corner were confronted with a lovely sand beach that stretched for quite a distance. We pulled up and hopped out. This lead to one of my favourite Hunter quotes…as soon as the boat touched shore, he hopped out and took off down the beach while I was having a bit of difficulty doing something to get us squared away. I asked him what is the first thing he should do when we arrive at the shore (hoping he would say..Help Dad with the boat or something similar) and he replied, “EXPLORE!” He’s just so eager to check things out that holding the boat for others or keeping it from drifting away is the furthest thing from his mind. I hope he never loses that curiousity but do hope he starts to remember to help a bit before taking off. What a kid!!
Hunter found some good rocks for skipping and after throwing one that gave him a huge number of skips the island was named Skipper Island.
Cameron found a rock with a shell fossil in it. Hunter spied something wriggling in the water and waded in to see what it was. He pulled out a large dragonfly and carried it on his hand for the rest of our time on the beach. (It later flew away as we were cruising back to Pelican Cove in the boat) There was a large fire ring with some log benches set up on the shore and I found another spot in the bush that had been used for a fire and perhaps some camping. Lovely forest.
Not so lovely were the leeches that attached themselves to Patty, Hunter and Cameron. Small..about an inch or a bit more…but having four get on us in 20-30 minutes was pretty gross.
After the dragonfly flew away as we headed back to Pelican Cove Cameron asked Hunter, “What’s that on your ankle?” It was a little leech all pink and full of blood. Hunter knocked it off and stomped it on the floor of the boat.
We then christened the beach…Leech Beach.
Aside from the leeches it was a great little exploration. Someday I’d like to go back and camp for a night on one of the islands but I’ll bring some rubber boots if I want to do any wading.