Day 7 – Thunder Bay to Sleeping Giant Provincial Park

Woke up just before 7 after quite a good sleep in the Wallmart car park. Went into The store to freshen up before getting gas and heading to Kakabeca Falls just South of Thunder Bay. Wandered around the boardwalks and lookouts above and alongside the powerful falls before heading East to visit the information centre at the Terry Fox lookout. 

Continued up the Tranz Canada to Panorama Amethyst Mine and parked up, paid $8 each to go in and started with a short tour. Learned about the history of the mine, the diffferent types of Amethysts and where they end up. Then it was our turn to dig! Wandered about the mine and turned over rocks, dug under rocks and smashed them apart. It wasn’t like gold panning where you get one pan, here, you could walk all over and collect the Amethysts you wanted and they weren’t hard to find, they were everywhere! Washed the stones we had collected, chose the best ones and took them in to be weighed. Paid just over $3 for a pound.Stopped at a Lookout near the mine before driving just over an hour to Sleeping Giant Provincial  Park. Picked up a few overpriced drinks and checked into Marie Louise camping ground. Went to check out the boat launch and jetty before driving to the end of the peninsula to Silver Islet which my Lonely Planet book has said is an ‘abandoned town’, this is not entirely true. Yeah the mine and store is abandoned but there are a lot of renovated and new holiday homes in the town so we were a bit disappointed. Chatted to a man who was sitting outside the old store and he told us a bit about the area. Funnily enough he was from Calgary! Drove around the town a bit before going on a 10 minute hike to a creek. Wanted something a bit longer so decided to do the Ravine Lake Trail. Walked through bushland, forest and boggy flats to two lookouts overlooking Lake Superior. Halfway along the trail I thought I heard twigs breaking in front of me, walked a bit further then Fergus heard the same sound behind him. We scurried along faster, talking loudly to scare the bear or whatever it was away. Even carrying bear spray the thought of coming across one is pretty scary!Headed back to camp and had some noodles, tomato, spring onions and fried eggs for dinner then walked down to the beach. Had a couple of drinks, I went for a short swim, Fergus paddled and we both got eaten by mozzies. Watched some kids fishing for lobster off the jetty and saw another incredible sunset. What a lovely place.

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