After a failed canoe camping trip two weeks ago because of the weather, I was so disappointed that I didn’t get to go in the nature that I improvised a camping trip last week end.
In facts, Two months ago, I booked a canoe camping spot (the last one available before September, can you believe that?) and of course, as the week passed, the weather got bad. “Severe Thunderstorms”. Unfortunately, the politics of Kiamika (where we were supposed to go) is no refund 7 days before the booking, so we couldn’t cancel. And when I called to know our options, They said that if there was thunder, they wouldn’t let us on the water so they would put us in a campground accessible by car. If we only had like an hour canoeing, it would have been fine to be under the rain but we had three hours, weather can change a lot during three hours. So we had the choice of going there, not being able to canoe and stay in a campground under the rain for the evening OR not going and loose the deposit but saving money on the rest of trip and stay warm and do something at home which would be way more enjoyable. So we didn’t go.
I was really sad though because this summer was supposed to be fun, outdoorsy, full of music, and it is just profiling to be impossible to camp or canoe because everyone booked everything months in advance, home because USA border is closed, and with no music because all festivals got cancelled.
Well, sick of staying stuck at home since March, and having missed the sunny week ends because of me moving in another place, or because of the bad weather, I booked a camping in one day on Tuesday for the week end.
At first we wanted to go west to Tremblant, but the Mosquito radar was off the charts. Estrie is preferred during that time because the Mosquitoes are less there (well, don’t get me wrong, they are here but less).
On a second hand, I don’t know if you know that but there is a comet in the sky right now, called NEOWISE. You can see it with your bear eyes (it is true!!!) and even from the city. Though, two hours away from Montreal, we have a dark sky reserve, and I was like: YES let’s go see the comet from there!!
Of course, all the SEPAQ camping spots were full, so I looked for campgrounds around. I found one that looked nice, by the water so I took a chance and called.
Reference: Camping de la rivière étoilée
The guy was SUPER nice. He said he had 9 spots by the river and 6 on the other side of the walkway. There are clean water toilets, and even a free shower. We could also rent kayaks or canoe! AND it was dog friendly! (I was looking for a dog friendly place because we had a dog with us). There is also a farmer’s market on Fridays, and a very good butcher at the general store next to the camping.
We arrived there on Friday night, and it was even more beautiful than what I was expecting. You park and then walk a little to get to the camping spot. You can borrow a little hand truck if you have too many stuff. We had the camping almost to ourselves. We only had two neighbors that were still far away from us. Well, I think a couple moved because they were scared of our dog but they didn’t say anything and just put their tent a bit further away. The next day there were a bit more people but some spots were still available.
The owner told us that this was the busiest week end because of the “Construction Holidays”. He said if we would be to come back another week, we could have the camping to ourselves!
I can’t believe it because honestly, it is the nicest campground I have been to in Quebec. We were right next to the water, in the middle of the Dark Sky Reserve next to Mont Megantic. The facilities are very clean, nice free shower… 25$ the first tent and then an additional price per tent. What do you want more? Oh and I am warning you, no cell reception! They offer free wifi at the entrance but no cell reception elsewhere on the campground.
The first night, we were so lucky with the weather. Beautiful cloudless night. We could see the Milky way as well as the Comet NEOWISE. We could see it starting at dawn. It was such an incredible experience to see it with our naked eyes.
I have spent lots of time looking at the sky because I love that, but nothing could have prepared me to this spectacle.
It was just stunning. I spent most of my Friday night looking at it and taking hundreds of pictures of the comet and the milky way. I guess I had been missing photography in my life since the beginning of the COVID-19. You can see it clearly on my instagram (@welcomeho.me) where I don’t post that often since March even though I have tons of pictures to sort out.
COVID-19 has been though – on all of us. It was really refreshing to just do nothing side by side to the water. Take a two hour walk. Make a fire. Have fun. Disconnect.
Anyhow. I hope you guys had the chance of seeing it! I want to see your pictures! DM me on insta or send me an email with the link to it 🙂