Western Islands, Georgian Bay Adventure · Aug 31, 09:56 AM

We were invited on an adventure of a lifetime while living here in Midland. A flotilla was scheduled to go to the Western Islands last Saturday August 28 from Thunder Beach. We were invited to share in this adventure in a 30 foot Boston Whaler. The whaler is known as one of the best Georgian Bay boats, able to smoothly cut through the large swells that Georgian Bay is noted for. And since the Western Islands are known as the most exposed Islands on the East side of Georgian Bay, and with swells of over 1 metre were in the forecast for that day, we were happy to be in this majesty of a boat. The Western Islands are the only ‘land’ between Parry Sound and the Lion’s Head of the Bruce Peninsula.

What a trip! Unfortuneately due to the high winds, none of the boats of the flotilla attempted the trip except for us – well one boat attempted but turned back just before Hope Island … but what a great day. Not a cloud in the sky!

It was our first time beyond Hope Island since moving to this area – (way too busy with our artwork, and still fixing our land bound Bertram boat) … so we were so excited to have the opportunity to get out there in Georgian Bay, where hopefully we will be venturing next summer with our own boat.

What a sight of inspiration! Hope Island disappears quite quickly, then nothing. Very little sight to land anywhere. Just open water.

The Boston Whaler was a sweet ride … the Captain was tremendous at steering the boat into the swells, so there was little pounding … just the occasional smashing of waves, then relief from the heat, as we were sprayed by water.

Within 20 minutes of open water wave running, aye captaine pointed out the Islands, way off in the distance … they looked like white mirages floating above the horizon … very cool.

Another 20 minutes, and we came upon them …. WOW is all I can say. The photos should tell the rest of the tale.

Unbelievable colours, reminding me of the caribbean … except the water is perhaps 20 degrees colder (it was nippy … refreshing).

I could easily spend a week there exploring.

We took the inflatable dingy to shore to do some exploring on land, and after finally finding a place to anchor within the centre of the Islands, we had some lunch, and set off to take a ride around the Lighthouse of the Western Western Islands.

After doing some research, I found out that the Lighthouse is the last remaining wooden Lighthouse of the Great Lakes, built in 1895. GORGEOUS sight. Apparently, the keepers would live in Lighthouse for months at a time … very isolated. Imagine how much painting and reading you could accomplish living there.

What a tremendous trip. We met great people and had some good laughs. Thank you to the captaine and his lovely wife, Judy, Craig and the kids for this inspirational trip. After over 400 photos, I think I have my next series.

Click thumbnail to enlarge each image

  • Coming into the Western Islands, Georgian Bay
  • Western Islands
  • Western Islands
  • Orange Lichen on the Western Islands
  • Stu dropping us off on shore at the Western Islands
  • The water is like the Carribean at the Western Islands
  • da plane, da plane !
  • Seriously, it looks like something in the Carribean, or the Mediterranean .. but it's Georgian Bay! Okay, the water was a little colder.
  • Our Captain stayed with his boat. Anchorage was pretty tough with the 1 meter waves.
  • Gorgeous colours at the Western Islands
  • Boulders of the Western Islands
  • Again, the contrast between the white, black and orange covering the rocks, against the amazingly blue water and sky ... aaah.
  • Looking towards Giant's Tomb from the Western Islands
  • And yes, HUGE trees finding growth amongst this harsh landscape and winds.
  • Again, I find the contrasts absolutely breathtaking.
  • Western Islands
  • Judy, looking into the somewhat protected anchorage at the Western Islands.
  • Judy, waiting for Stu to arrive with the dingy...looking at what felt like a little hot tub of water.
  • More amazing greenery surviving on the rocks.
  • Approaching the Lighthouse of the Western Western Islands. Seriously, that's what they are called.
  • Rounding the Lighthouse of the Western Western Islands. STUNNING!
  • Approaching the lighthouse of the Western Western Islands.
  • Closeup of the Lighthouse of the Western Western Islands.

— Carol Currie


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