BRONTE CREEK PROVINCIAL PARK – OCTOBER 2012
This was our second trip to Bronte Creek Provincial Park. After a disastrous first trip in 2008, we really weren’t sure what to expect. Dave finished work early and we got away in great time. Bronte really isn’t that far from home, so our hope was to make it there before dark and before the rain started. We were doing really well and it seemed like we would make our objectives. Alas, the prevailing Karma for Bronte held fast. I exited the QEW at Hwy 25 to reach the campground, but a lot had changed since 2008. Hwy 25 had been restructured into a multi lane road. I couldn’t remember the name of the road to the campground that ran off Hwy 25 and nothing looked familiar. I hadn’t bothered to print directions because I was sure I would remember how to get to the park and didn’t count on anything changing. It was a disaster. I tried calling the park office, no answer. I tried using my phone gps and finally found the proper road, long after we’d passed it. It’s not easy to find places to pull off or turn around when you’ve got over 50 feet of length. Finally we found a place to turn around and headed back to the road we needed. We arrived at the park, but it was already pretty much dark and it had started raining lightly too. On a good note, our site was very nice. It was large and close to the hydro post. We managed to get everything hooked up and set up including the tarp and campfire pit covers. The result was a nice, warm fire despite the ever increasing rainfall. Here are a few photos of the site:
Saturday morning we woke up to more rain. It had rained all night and the forecast called for rain all day and all night again. We didn’t mind, we were warm and dry inside. We had a leisurely bacon and egg breakfast and watched some fishing shows.
It certainly wasn’t going to be a good day for hiking or even fishing along Bronte Creek. We decided to head out for a drive and see if we could see any salmon in Bronte Creek and maybe go for a walk along the Oakville waterfront. During our walks along the creek we noticed only one fisherman catch a salmon.
As you can see, it was really raining. It was cool as well. We headed further down river into Oakville and found a little park on Riverside Dr.
The next stop was a park along the lakefront at the mouth of Bronte Creek.
After some driving around and walking in Oakville, we headed back to camp for a late lunch and some warm coffee. Dave got a fire going and we sat around a fire for the rest of the day reading books and talking. It was a relaxing trip out. We kept the fire going until we finally went to bed. Here are some park photos:
It continued to rain all weekend. We woke up again on Sunday morning to rain. The furnace was running pretty much all weekend as well. On Sunday, we packed up around noon and headed out. Of course, by the time we were in Burlington, the rain had stopped and the sky cleared. I’m not complaining though, this was a nice end to the 2012 season. It was relaxing and even though the weather was not nice, we enjoyed ourselves.
In total, there may have been half a dozen of us camping at Bronte. We were in the Prairie Campground. As mentioned before, the site was really nice. We didn’t have much interaction with the park staff, so I really can’t rate them. Despite the weather and number of campers, the park was still patrolled pretty regularly. We were impressed with the dumping station. There were two and each had a hut where the water connections were kept heated. Too bad they didn’t do winter camping here, with a set up like that. More signage is needed to get to the park off Hwy 25 North.
Next year, I would like to hike some trails at Bronte and take the kayaks to launch at the mouth of Bronte Creek a little earlier in the season when the weather is nicer. All in all, this trip was a nice relaxing final trip of the season. We enjoyed campfires, touring Oakville a little and the warmth of our trailer when it simply was too cool outside. Here are some links:
BRONTE CREEK PROVINCIAL PARK CAMPING TRIP – 2008
I can’t say that Bronte Creek was one of our favorite parks. It did have an advantage – being located close to home. I think the weekend will forever remain one of the most memorable camping trips for us due to the incessant rain, wind and storms that rolled through non stop. It was pretty early in the Spring when we were here and the leaves on the trees weren’t even out fully. Here are some park photos:
We took our chances on the weather and took a day trip to Crawford Lake Conservation Area. The trail around the lake was pretty cool. This lake is rare in that it’s meromictic, meaning it has layers that do not mix. The other cool thing at Crawford Lake is it’s reconstruction of an Iroquois Village, Wendat. I would say this was the highlight of our visit, with the only downside being that this park was down wind of a very stinky mushroom farm. Visit here if you can though, it’s worth it. The Bruce Trail also runs through this area – another awesome place to hike.
It rained while we were at Crawford, but then again it rained everywhere that weekend. We spent a little time at the day use area of Bronte Creek which is located on the other side of Bronte Creek itself and a drive from the campground. It would be a fun place for kids as there are lots of animals (mostly hungry goats) and things to do. Here’s some photos:
The most memorable moment came that weekend when the worst storm rolled through. The wind caught our awning, ripped it off the trailer at one end and threw it up on the roof of the trailer. Part of it was still attached and it had to come off. Dave and I were standing on coolers on the picnic table with knives cutting it off in the pouring rain and gusting wind. We finally did cut it off, but not before it put a hole in the roof. The saddest part was that I almost cancelled, but didn’t want to lose a few bucks. The awningroof repair cost us $500, much more than the cancellation fees would have been. Here are some pics of the most memorable part of the weekend:
Bronte Creek certainly was an interesting camping trip. We may try camping here again so that we can hike some park trails or maybe launch our kayaks where Bronte Creek enters Lake Ontario. Time will tell, but it won’t be one that we rush back to soon.
Here’s a link to my Picasa album:http://picasaweb.google.com/Adventurer67/BronteMay2008#
Here’s links to Bronte Creek Provincial Park and Crawford Lake Conservation Area:http://www.ontarioparks.com/english/bron.html