4.30.2008

the day out report

Yesterday we took a drive to the Elora Gorge, as part of my desire to see more of the surrounding area and go hiking (or walking in some woods) more often.

The majority of the day was spent driving. We took the scenic route up, first winding our way out of Mississauga on Erin Mills Parkway, which joins Mississauga Road and becomes Highway 1, then to Highway 7. (In New York State and much of the rural US, these country roads are called "routes". I'm trying to remember that they are called "highways" here, even though they don't look like highways.) I've been told that 7 is the scenic route from Toronto to Kitchener, so it seemed like a good idea.

Long ago, Lone Primate and some other readers mentioned The Copper Kettle in Georgetown for its great pub food. (It's great knowing this is all recorded somewhere on your own blog.) I got the address online, and Main Street, Georgetown seemed like an easy enough place to find. It was, but there was no Copper Kettle on it. We drove a lot, and looked a lot, and spent a fair amount of time searching, but no such pub materialized. Anyone know if this place is still in business?

We had lunch at another pub on Georgetown's Main Street, then back to 7 west to Guelph, then north on 6.

On Highway 6, we got lost. Who expects a road to take a 90-degree turn without changing numbers? And without good signage, either. So we drove a fair distance out of our way, and back, and by the time we got directions and headed back towards Elora, it was getting late in the day.

Back on 6, the area is all farmland, which is always nice to drive through. Although the getting lost part detracts from that a bit. But not in a huge way.

The Conservation Area itself was very nice. We had a nice walk, saw a bit of the gorge, and there's not much more to say about that. We were already warned that it wasn't a huge hiking area, but we walked on whatever trails are there, plus around the park itself.

We took the 401 home, which gave us a better idea of the distance. Minus searching for a phantom pub, having lunch, and getting lost, Elora Gorge seems to be slightly more than an hour from our place, maybe 1:15.

If you're wondering, Tala barked and spun in circles the entire way up. The. Entire. Way. And since we were on slow roads and got lost, that's a lot of barking. The best part of walking around Elora Gorge was the quiet.

Then, much to our amazement, she actually tired herself out. On the way home, we had several highly surprising stretches of quiet. She actually lay down! We were like parents tiptoeing around after they finally get a colicky baby to sleep, whispering for fear of starting her up again. (She seems to be conditioned to pop up and bark at the sound of the directional being used! Click - Tala!)

This was the first time we've ever seen Tala tire herself out from barking. So it turns out there is a limit! Perhaps lying quietly in the back while traffic zooms along on both sides provided an unintentional lesson for her. See? You can lie here quietly, and nothing bad happens.

But we've discontinued her car training. It was so much work, and progress was excruciatingly slow. It's one thing to drive around our little neighbourhood with me in the hatchback with Tala (not exactly comfortable), giving her treats for quiet behaviour. She's made big progress on that little front.

But we can't imagine how long it would take to get from there to actual highway driving with Tala alone in the back, well-behaved. Especially since every time we go anywhere without training, it reinforces the barking behaviour. I do think she'll eventually grow out of this.

She's a great dog, and she's learned so much since we adopted her, and we love her to pieces. So if this is her worst flaw, well, everyone has one.

I think our next outing will be the Devil's Punchbowl Falls, some time in May.

15 comments:

Scott M. said...

Get any good photos?

L-girl said...

I took a few, but I don't have time to deal with them for a while. I doubt they're anything special, but we'll see (eventually).

L-girl said...

Oh, and we did find the bridge, so the one of us who is not afraid of heights stayed behind with the dogs while I walked out for the view.

Allan said he'll see the view in the photos. :)

Amy said...

No wonder you dozed off during the game! Sounds rather exhausting, especially the part with Tala barking....

L-girl said...

We were whipped! I felt like I had been out hiking all day, rather than just strolling around for an hour or so.

Truth is, I have been known to fall asleep during games if I am cozy on the couch. Sometimes I miss a middle inning or two. :)

Amy said...

I think the game threads keep me from dozing off. When the game is slow, usually the chat picks up!

Last night, however, we were mostly on the game, except for the small digression about ticks. You are lucky not to have to worry about them up there.

L-girl said...

I'm getting a little tired of the game threads. I love the community, but I don't want to spend my evening at the computer. It's taking away from needed relaxation time.

I think I'll probably do the game threads more occasionally now.

Amy said...

I can understand that. And I know what you mean. Of course, I tend to like the side chatter, and without you there, there is likely to be less of that. I still like having fellow Red Sox fans to cheer with (since I have no one living here who does) and also having people who can answer my questions, so I am sure I will hang in with the threads, although it won't be as much fun without you!

L-girl said...

the side chatter, and without you there, there is likely to be less of that.

Heh, yes, I am big on the side chatter. :)

although it won't be as much fun without you!

Well thank you. I'm sure I'll still be there, but maybe skip more days than I have been.

M@ said...

Well I'm glad you found it. I agree, the signage on Hwy 6 north of Guelph is pretty poor. We were heading to Elora at night one time, in the snow, and I think we must have done the exact same thing. And we lived in the area, in Guelph!

I'm sure I must have told you that I grew up in Stoney Creek, where your next planned outing will be. As teenagers we often went hiking in the Devil's Punch Bowl, and on the Bruce Trail all around there. Haven't been there in years of course, but I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

If you're looking for somewhere to have lunch on your way, keep me in mind, as I can give you some suggestions... hopefully more current than the Copper Kettle!

L-girl said...

I'm sure I must have told you that I grew up in Stoney Creek, where your next planned outing will be.

You did, but I didn't connect Stoney Creek and this place. That's cool.

As teenagers we often went hiking in the Devil's Punch Bowl, and on the Bruce Trail all around there.

Ah, that brings back memories, too. As a teenager, I spent quite a bit of time in Harriman State Park, a section of the Appalachian Trail near where I grew up. Some hiking, but mostly hanging out and doing illegal activities in the woods. Nice memories.

If you're looking for somewhere to have lunch on your way, keep me in mind, as I can give you some suggestions... hopefully more current than the Copper Kettle!

I will definitely ask! Thanks. :)

M@ said...

mostly hanging out and doing illegal activities in the woods. Nice memories.

The Bruce Trail (which runs through the Punch Bowl) had many good places for that. You'll probably find a certain amount of garbage and burned-out campfires in the Punch Bowl attesting to the fact that teenagers are the same everywhere. :)

L-girl said...

attesting to the fact that teenagers are the same everywhere. :)

I always find that heartening. Although my friends and I never left garbage in the woods.

Yesterday I saw some plastic cups strewn around a picnic table. It just infuriates me. Brightly coloured trash cans everywhere... I'm not blaming teenagers, of course. Just a general grrrr.

impudent strumpet said...

attesting to the fact that teenagers are the same everywhere. :)

I always find that heartening. Although my friends and I never left garbage in the woods.


Oh, of course not, you never leave actual garbage in the woods! Just the incriminating evidence part :)

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

I don't know if you do tags or not but I tagged you. If you don't want to do it it's fine by me.