Chapleau Crown Game

By: Lloyd Mize

After dinner we again headed for the Chapleau Game Preserve. I turned on the side road where our first bear was sited this morning. I did not expect to see any, knowing that they do travel around. No bear was seen.

We returned to the main road. Slowing at each lake we scanned the shore line for any movement and the water for any sign of animal life. Again we stopped at the "Beaver House" sign straining our eyes to see any movement. We are not sure if we even saw the "house." The next stop was the Moose Lookout. Nope! Just a mile or two the Platform 3 sign appeared. We fought off the mosquitos and bugs more that seeing any wildlife. I do not remember mentioning the bugs. There are NUMEROUS bugs, mosquitoes, black flies and other varmints flying around you when you leave the protection of your vehicle. One stop we made this afternoon was for repellent!

I was told by my wife that we should turn around in 15 minutes. It was now 8:30 and we didn't want to be out in the wilderness after dark. I saw a black form on the side of the road. Not wanting to get out of the car, I tried to focus the camera. She ambled off with her three cubs running after her without waiting for her picture to be taken. The total, including yesterday reached seven bears. Approaching a road that we drove passed this morning; I turned hoping to see something different. There was a nice lake but by this time we would not get out of the car only to return and kill insects that entered the car with us. We started back. My wife spotted the mother bear first. I stopped a half mile away and was able to snap several pictures through the windshield. A cub appeared and walked toward mom who was crossing the road, then another came running. They all disappeared into the woods which turned out to be a bank lowering to a depth of 15 or 20 feet. My wife discovered them at the bottom of the drop off. I backed up, catching a glimpse of them as they ran farther into the woods. After that all we saw were a couple of rabbits sitting on the road. Each rabbit was alone and quickly departed, seeking shelter in the woods as we approached.

The remainder of the drive was uneventful. A waitress told us she had seen several moose on a drive back from Timmins, a city we would travel through to reach Cochrane, our next destination. The decision to leave the next day for Timmins or Cochrane had been previously made, not wanting to spend another day driving 50-80 miles without seeing a lot of wildlife. This way we might be able to go to the Polar Bear Rehabilitation Habitat on Friday.

Gas

One of the things I forgot to mention earlier. When we saw our first gas station in Canada it was $1.099 and we flipped! What is American doing to us! Later we learned that the price is for a liter with 3.75 liters to a gallon. Today, at $1.21 a liter we filled up for $67. Converting from liters to gallons calculated to 14 gallons. I neglected to tell you that this little Esso petrol station in Chapleau has full service. Later, at another "service station" I was asked if I wanted my oil checked! A man actually filled our tank for us! Some of you out there remember this service prior to the early 1970's; a service that has been forgotten in the States and other parts of Canada.

Suggestion:

If you decide to venture into this part of the world, do so at a different time of the year. It might be more enjoyable without all the insects. I have been told that the worst time for black flies is the end of May and June. As July and August are hot that might not be good either. Snowmobiles would provide entertainment but the noise would keep the wildlife away. A quiet drive in the evening or early morning might prove best for viewing wildlife.

You have my permission to reprint and distribute this article as long as it is distributed in its entirety, including all links and copyright information. ? Lloyd Mize 2007

Travel and Leisure
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Travel and Leisure
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles