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Another Birthday and More Wine Wanders in Ontario - August 28 - September 6, 2018

This is the first of our post-summer jaunts for this year. We normally try to take off in late August until mid-October but this year we need to be back home September 7-10 to help host visiting family members. While we wait we have decided to take another trip through Ontario wine country including another birthday celebration (mine this time). Besides wine stops in Prince Edward County and Niagara, we hope to finally catch the Peterborough Lift Lock in operation and plan to deliver some boxes to a colleague near Pelham, ON.

We will be home for a week or so starting September 7 then we will be working our way to Cape Breton for the 2018 version of the Celtic Colours International Festival in October.

As usual, that's as planned as it gets and all is subject to serendipitous change.

Contents


Day 1 - August 28, 2018 - Off To Prince Edward County
Day 2 - August 29, 2018 - Moving Over Lake SimcoeSince our plan includes being in Niagara Falls by the 31st, we decided to work our way north of
Day 3 - August 30, 2018 - Visiting Waterloo Again
Day 4 - August 31, 2018 - On to Niagara Falls
Day 5 - September 1, 2018 - Winery Wanders
Day 6 - September 2, 2018 - More Winery Wanders
Day 7 - September 3, 2018 - Wandering Back To "The County"
Day 8 - September 4, 2018 - Wandering Around "The County"
Day 9 - September 5, 2018 - More Wandering Around "The County"
Day 10 - September 6, 2018 - Homeward Bound

Day 1 - August 28, 2018 - Off To Prince Edward County

We pulled out of the driveway about 8:50. The first thing we did was head off the wrong way to stop by St-Viateur Bagel & Café DDO to pick up some "fresh from the oven" bagels to go with us.

Our first stop in Ontario was the Flying J at Lancaster to add $50 of Ontario gas at $1.279 instead of the $1.469 in Pointe-Claire. While we were there we took time for a sit-down breakfast at Denny's. We later made a brief stop in Gananoque to pick up a couple of pharmacy items.

We rolled straight on the 401 until exiting on route 49 for Picton. Needless to say we made a stop in the Tyendinga Mohawk reserve to top up the tank at $1.179. In Picton we stopped at the LCBO in Picton for some "grape juice" for the afternoon/evening.

We then headed directly to Quinte's Isle Campark which has become a favourite place to stay in the county. This was our first visit with all facilities operating - we usually land "off-season". We spent an enjoyable afternoon and evening in spite of the heat and humidity. "The boys" had a wonderful wander around the park for an hour or two. Eventually there will be a bunch of interesting pictures to check out.
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Distance:379.4 KM
Time On Road:4:43
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Day 2 - August 29, 2018 - Moving Over Lake Simcoe

Since our plan includes being in Niagara Falls by the 31st, we decided to work our way north of "Hogtown" and enjoy a more pleasant route. We also wanted to take another crack of catching the Peterborough Lift Lock in operation for once.

We started of about 9:20 after enjoying some pan-grilled bagels for breakfast. It was still hot and humid.

In Picton we stopped at the LCBO in Picton replace some consumed "grape juice". We also made a brief stop at Lillian's favourite wool shop before picking up the Loyalist Parkway to Bloomfield, Wellington, Hillier etc. until we made our way out of "The County" near Trenton. We then made our way, using secondary roads, around the east end of Rice Lake and found our way to Peterborough and Peterborough Lift Lock. The good news was that the lock was operable. The bad news is that there was nobody wanting to pass through. While we waited in hope of some action, we took a nice walk around the site then went back to the Roadtrek to make a nice lunch from our galley.

After lunch "the boys" took off to see if there was any action at the lock. We were pleased to see that a number of vessels were in the lock on the upstream side. We were able to get some excellent pictures of the transfer.

We then hit the road picking up route 7 and 12 (part of TransCanada Highway) to Orillia and then onward to the Barrie KOA where we grabbed a campsite for the night. The weather was being a bit annoying with light rain coming and going. Still we were able to fit in a nice walk, a great dinner out of the galley and a bit of a campfire.
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Distance:321.9 KM
Time On Road:5:29
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Day 3 - August 30, 2018 - Visiting Waterloo Again

Today we continued our rather circuitous migration to Niagara. We set off at around 9:45 after a bite of breakfast and some hot coffee to counter the rather brisk 13°C morning. Quite the shock after temperatures near 30°C.

We took a route basically following route 89 to Mount Forest then taking route 6 to Guelph before heading over to Waterloo. Our objective was Green Acre Park in North Waterloo where we had stayed previously. On the way in we had to pass St. Jacobs Outlets so we decided to poke around a bit. After about 45 minutes we moved on to Green Acre Park to be sure we had a spot for the night. We picked a spot in our usual area "in the low 300's" then headed off to the closest Sobeys to restock the larder a bit before heading back to camp and getting set up.

While we were relaxing a couple from Alberta wandered over to say hi. It seems that they recently had purchased a Banff from the Erwin Hymer Carado line. They had been visiting the Waterloo factory and getting some help from the company. They are long experienced RVers though they have only recently downsized from much larger units. We had a wonderful visit exchanging experiences and travel suggestions. They are heading east to the maritimes before heading down to MA then heading back west.

We eventually put together a nice dinner from the galley and spent some time by the fire.

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Distance:232.2 KM
Time On Road:4:11
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Day 4 - August 31, 2018 - On to Niagara Falls

It is September 3rd as I finally start to catch up the text part of this log. It has been a busy few days.

We were scheduled to meet with Lillian's brother and wife (R&A) in Niagara Falls shortly after noon. We set out from Waterloo about 9:45 and took a leisurly route using mostly secondary roads so we could enjoy the scenery.We basically took route 24 down to Simcoe then let the GPS guide us over to Niagara Falls. We arrived at Niagara Falls KOA. about 1:10 to find R&A waiting for us. We registered at the office and all headed over to our assigned site where we set up then had a nice lunch from the galley.It was a pleasant afternoon to sit around and chat for a bit.

Eventually they went back down the road a bit to check in at their hotel and get freshened up before picking us up to head into town for the evening. We reconvened and made our way to Casino Niagara for about 6 PM. We parked the car and headed in to pass a bit of time until it was time to head off to dinner. The ladies decided to tackle the slots for a bit while the gents went to find a drink.

Dinner was scheduled for 7 PM at https://www.remingtonsofniagara.com/ Remingtons of Niagara, a 10 minute walk away. We set off in time to just make our reservation. We were seated at a table for six which made it obvious that an extra birthday surprise was in the works. A few minutes later our niece and her hubby came to join the party. We had not seen them for a bit since they had been busy with jobs and moving in to their first home. It was a very special surprise.

We enjoyed a lovely dinner the made our way back to the casino for a bit. While Lillian & A worked the machines for a bit the rest of us headed down to the falls to watch the evening's fireworks. After that we wandered around a while enjoying the scenery and chatting.

We eventually made our way back to find the ladies. The young folks headed off to check in at their hotel while R&A dropped us back at the Roadtrek.

A very nice birthday!

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Distance:212.7 KM
Time On Road:3:33
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Day 5 - September 1, 2018 - Winery Wanders

We made a leisurely start to the day until we heard from A that the young folks (S&M) stomachs thought their throats were cut. They were anxious to have some breakfast. We suggested The Regal Diner both because we found it excellent when we were there last May and also because the Saturday Niagara Falls Farmers Market was close by.

S&M went ahead while R&A picked us up at 10:00 at Niagara Falls KOA. We caught up with the ravenous ones about 10:10 and settled in for a good feed. We waddled out after an hour. S&M went to check out while the rest of us picked over the market. My main objective was to get a dozen eggs from one particular vendor based on the ones I purchased last May. A purchased a number of things including a large basket of tomatoes which she shared around.

We then popped by the camp to stash the perishables and to pick up some boxes of papers that I needed to deliver to a colleague near Pelham. We had arranged to meet S&M at: Hernder Estate Wines so we headed off that way and arrived just a few minutes after the planned 12:30 plan. We were there primarily to pick up a case of their excellent 2012 Cabernet Franc. Of course we took some time to sample a few of their other offerings. A couple of other bottles were purchased before we got out the door.

At this point S&M took their leave to head back to "Hogtown". The rest of us went on to make some room in the trunk by delivering my stuff. Having accomplished that we made our way to Tawse Winery. We did a bit of sampling but only took a couple of special bottles. Our next stop was Megalomaniac Winery where we wandered around enjoying some of their unique brands and labels.

We next dropped in to Boo's Bar & Eatery for a bite of lunch. Again, we waddled out.

For our final winery stop we headed off to that family favourite, Peller Estates Winery. We picked up a couple of bottles as gifts and a couple of their 6-bottle cloth boxes.

About 5:25 PM we set course back to camp. Along the way we stopped at the Sobeys at Niagara Plaza to pick up some bits for a light supper at camp. Back at camp we sat around for a bit and chatted for a while before putting together a nice salad-based dinner. After some more chat R&A headed off to their beds as did we shortly later.

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Time On Road:0:00
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Day 6 - September 2, 2018 - More Winery Wanders

R&A called when they were up and rolling. We were already up and, since it was Sunday, I had Weston up on the picnic table for his weekly grooming. We told R&A to come on down when they were ready and we would have breakfast at camp. On the way over R&A stopped at a bakery they wanted to check out so they turned up with some lovely butter croissants to add to breakfast.

I was not quite finished Weston when they arrived so we chatted a bit over coffees while I finished up. After that I rounded up some ham, bacon and other goodies which I cooked along with eggs and croissants for a really nice breakfast all around.

After some final catchup, R&A set course for home. We packed up the Roadtrek for driving and set off around 12:45, made a pause to dump the "ugly tanks" and headed off on our own missions.

First stop was at Château des Charmes. Our primary objective was to pick up some more 2016 Aligoté since we only had one bottle left from the 6 acquired in Picton last week. We were surprised to find that the 2016 was gone but the 2017 was available and had already won some awards. After a quick tasting, we found that the 2017 filled the bill nicely and we purchase another 6 to hopefully get us home.

Next we headed in to Niagara-on-the-Lake. We finally found a spot to park the van and paid enough to poke around for about 90 minutes. It was too hot to leave Weston in the van for any length of time so we took him along for the stroll.

One objective was to pick up some preserves at Greaves Jams & Marmalades. We left that for the return path so we did not have to carry them. We also hoped to pick up some Eccles Cakes at Niagara Home Bakery but they did not have any. Lillian explored a number of other shops while the boys enjoyed all the attention that a freshly groomed bearded collie generates.

Along the way we stopped at https://beauchapeau.com/ BeauChapeau Hat Shop as usual. It really is an interesting shop. Lillian went in while Weston attracted attention outside. After a while she came out, took Weston and shipped me in to check out my usual style of hats since she thought the selection to be especially good. I poked around a bit and found a style of hat I have been wanting but having poor luck a finding a fit. I showed it to Lillian. She took the hat and returned the dog. I am now the delighted owner of a Stetson Barnstormer Soft Felt Fedora. A special birthday present!.

We did some more poking about finally working our way back to Greaves Jams & Marmalades where we picked up our planned acquisitions. We then set course back to Niagara Falls KOA where we had a nice dinner from the galley and spent a quiet evening even though the park was a bit of a madhouse.

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Distance:62.0 KM
Time On Road:2:02
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Day 7 - September 3, 2018 - Wandering Back To "The County"

Time to start back eastward. We decided to work our way back past Toronto while it is still a holiday. For a change we wanted to try following the old route across.

We set out around 9:15 and took the QEW back up to Burlington where we exited and got on the Lakeshore and just followed it along. It is amazing how built up the whole lakeshore is all the way along past Greater Toronto and beyond. We made good time even past the Canadian National Exhibition which is wrapping up today.

We kept up until we were forced up to the 401 by the lack of bridges over the Rouge River just before Pickering. We picked up the 401 and headed on to Colcorne where we picked up route 2 again along to 33 and in to Prince Edward County.

We made a stop at Sandbanks Winery as we were passing. We then went on to Quinte's Isle Campark where we are settled in until Thursday.

We had a nice dinner, sat by the fire for a bit and I have finally caught this thing up.

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Distance:363.4 KM
Time On Road:6:29
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Day 8 - September 4, 2018 - Wandering Around "The County"

Today we slow the pace. We have a couple of days in "The County" before we head home on Thursday. We started the day with a nice pancake breakfast cooked on the camp stove. We then took time to do some clean ups around the RV.

Around 11:30 we disconnect the van and headed into Picton. Lillian wanted to visit her favourite kitchen shop Zest Kitchen Shop which we accomplished. She picked up a couple of items and, after she checked out a couple of nearby shops, we hit the road again.

Our next stop was Waupoos Estates Winery where we wanted to pick up a couple of gift items. While Lillian shopped, the boys enjoyed a walk around the grounds. After Lillian finished her shopping I suggested she join us for a walk down to the lakeside since it was such a hot day. Down there we found a couple of tables in a shady area with a nice breeze. Lillian scooted up to the neadby restaurant an picked up a couple of glasses of Pinot Gris and ordered a "charcuterie" plate. They describe it as: Selection of Eastern Ontario cured meats, pickled vegetables, garden chutney, Cressy mustard, crostini. We would both describe it as Perfect for the occasion". We thoroughly enjoyed both the refreshments and the whole situation.

After lunch we headed back toward Picton by a rather roundabout route which cover some parts of the county that we had not seen before. Back in Picton we made brief stops at a meat store, a Metro food store and a Home Hardware for minor items then returned to Quinte's Isle Campark. We made a brief stop at the office for firewood then made our way back to our site about 3:45 PM.

We relaxed for the remainder of the afternoon and had a nice dinner from the galley. After dinner we sat by the fire for a bit then headed in.

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Distance:99.4 KM
Time On Road:2:35
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Day 9 - September 5, 2018 - More Wandering Around "The County"

Not too much on the plan for today. We made a leisurely start having breakfast at camp and spending some of the cooler morning hours knitting (Lillian) and reading (Rod). As the temperature warmed, we decided to wander a bit. If we were going to sit in the van to escape the heat, we may as well move.

We pulled out of camp about 11:15 and headed for Bloomfield. When we left the temperature was 27°C and climbing. By the time we got to Bloomfield it was more like 31°C. Lillian did some shopping while The Boys did some walking and then found a bench in the shade to relax. We were all dissapointed to see that The Saylor House was closed due to the heat.

Around 1 PM we decided to hunt for some propane for the Roadtrek (we have a 30 lb. onboard tank). We headed to Belleville where there seemed to be some prospects. As we approached the bridge out of the county we stopped at a chip wagon and had a snack of lunch. We resumed about 2 PM First checking Superior Propane (a home delivery depot) then the Canadian Tire Gas+ station near the Quinte Mall. They only could fill removable (e.g. BBQ) tanks but sent us to an OLCO on route 2 on the eastern edge of town.

The good news is that they were equipped to fill tanks like ours. The bad news is that the old gent on duty was physically unable to get at our tank which hides under the starbord side of the van. All the young flexible staff were out delivering propane. We decided to wait and fill tomorrow on the way home.

We then headed back into the county the same way we left and worked our way back to Bloomfield then Picton. Lillian wanted some more peaches so we were looking for fruit stands. We did not have too much luck and since we did not have much better to do in the 34°C we decided to head up route 49 to the Mohawk reservation and fill the fuel tank and revisit the fruit stand we found on our way west last week.

Our plan for the evening had been to grab some dinner and hang around for the "Kitchen Party" at http://waringhouse.com/the-barley-room.php The Barley Room. We swung by the pub about 4:30 PM and found the temperature to be 34°C in the late afternoon sun. We decided to head back to Quinte's Isle Campark and pull together a light dinner from the galley while the sun lowered and the day cooled down a bit.

We headed back to the pub a little after 6 PM to arrive for the "Kitchen party with The Frere Brothers".

On the way over we turned on both the van and the house A/C to chill off the inside. Once there we put the fan on and headed in to enjoy the music. As the evening progressed we checked every 30 minutes or so to make sure the van was staying cool enough. After the first check Rod ran the A/C for a bit to cool things off. Subsequent visits found things OK.

As far as the entertainment goes, it was one of the better "Kitchen Party" evenings which says a lot since they are usually great. There was a lot of really good "drop in" entertainment.

We headed back to camp about 9:30 PM and relaxed for a bit before turning in.

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Distance:218.1 KM
Time On Road:5:24
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Day 10 - September 6, 2018 - Homeward Bound

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Distance:397.9 KM
Time On Road:5:26
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The Numbers For The Trip

Distance:2,887.0 KM
Time On Road:39:57
Average Speed:57 KM/H
Picture Captions Coming Soon