It seems everything on Lake Superior is on a massive scale. Granite slabs line the bottom and shoreline. Veins of basalt are a couple metres wide. Surprisingly, the softer basalt is completely eroded away in places leaving deep cracks in the shoreline. Perfect to slide in with a kayak or canoe, they offer a hidden view of the lake. Many times we found logs 25 metres away from water rounded and smooth as though they were in a tumbler. Likewise, my favourite rock formations were smoothed and curved in plastic ways I couldn’t imagine. Although I had been there before, I was again fascinated by the near-fluting of rock walls contrasted with cobble and pebble bottoms, topped with aquamarine, steel blue waters. Coincidentally, these inlets were tucked out from the wind and as we rounded the corner we noticed how loud the water and wind was before. It was an ancient feeling sitting in these bays.

I also spotted a personal best number of eagles and loons in one day. 12 eagles and 25 loons. The stealth eagles patrolled nearly every major point, whereas the loons were almost always in groups of 5 and gave away their offshore position with their characteristic vocalizations.

two kayakers paddling near shore on an overcast day

We noticed more white and red pines on this stretch, some reaching 30 m with imperceptible root systems on sheer cliffs. My dad speculated that the roots may be following the cracks in the rock and holding them steady. We only spotted one uprooted tree and were surprised to note the root system was wide and shallow.

The water is colder now. Near glacial, what I’m used to, Lake Superior water. Although it rained and blew throughout the day, I dove in a few times to check out the bottom. It was almost always deeper than I expected. Some drop offs where the water was crystal clear turned into an oily black sheen. Perhaps these nearby depths fed our swimming holes with ice water.

kayaker floating in a narrow inlet between two rock cliffs

We were fortunate to have relatively calm waters so that we could explore and observe. We also got lucky in chatting with more folks who share a passion for Lake Superior; one couple we met has been visiting LSPP for 30 years consecutively. It had been a mistake coming up here their first year, as their original booking couldn’t work out, but they loved it so much up here that they returned every year since.

By: Peter Greve