It was a beautiful November day -- mild temperature, sunny breaks, and my birthday to boot! -- so we headed over to Algonquin Park for an afternoon hike. I got to choose the trail and since I've never done the Track and Tower Trail, and because I wanted to make good use of a particularly fine day, that was the one I chose.
It's a 7.5 km trail including the side loop over to the lookout point. It's definitely worth the extra couple of clicks to get that view! We did it in just under 3 hours with brief stops for snacks and photos. The Algonquin Park trail guide recommends allowing 4 hours for the hike and that's about right for a leisurely pace. It's also wise to err on the side of caution when planning a hike at this time of year. The days are short and there are fewer people on the trails so it's important to start a trail only if you know you can finish well before the sun goes down.
|The trail followed Cache Lake to start.|
|Rivers, rapids, and bridges make for interesting sights and sounds along the way.|
|A few sections of the trail use boardwalks to protect the land and/or our feet.|
|A lovely little waterfall cascade. We could hear this one well before we could see it.|
|Over 130 steps up to the lookout and back down again.|
|The view from the top! Totally worth the stairs!|
|Part of the trail follows an old train track. It ends rather abruptly where a bridge used to span a river.|
|And it picks up on the other side where it left off.|
|The old track sections make for some easy, level walking.|
|Even though the ambient temp was 15°C, these frozen little waterfalls stayed cold against the rock face.|
|Cool curtain of ice!|
|Old footings, remnants of a train trestle.|
|A river runs through it.|
|Hike complete! Either I'm doing a happy dance or I'm trying to get untangled from the leash. Either way, what a great day!|