Many moons ago Viking started a tradition of a Remembrance Day run
around Liberty Trail, encircling Kejimkujik National Park. Over the
years there has been on average 4 to 6 persons complete the 55 km run over
the various terrain, logging roads, single path trails, roots, swamps,
etc. A couple of years ago there was just one (1) runner, while a few
years before that there was about 14, including 7 young whipper snappers
from Banook Canoe Club, led by Bob Russell, who sort of got lost, getting
out of the woods well after dark.
About eight (8) years ago, a few of us who had no vision of doing the run
(Dipper, Fireball, and the Sungod), decided to get involved and also do
our November 11th reverence in the woods. We thought it would be a good
idea to help the runners by-moving vehicles from the start to finish
saving much morning/evening time and to also bike into Mason's Cabin at
the 44Km mark supplying tea, soup, and dry gear. This support group has
grown to the point that we sometimes out numbered the runners. >From what
was a 'same day' support venture, it has become an overnight (or two)
canoe, bike, and/or hike trip. Some of the support group (Scrounger and
Halifax) have on occasion run the thing.
That is a bit of history and brings us to 2001. Due to injuries, chronic
problems, and last minute sicknesses, there were no runners. This did not
stop the support group from doing their thing. In fact, the support group
may become the event, being such a success this year. Hopefully next year
there will be some runners, BUT there definitly will be a KEJI Remembrance
TWO NIGHTS IN KEJI, NOVEMBER 11th, 2001
Leaving the Dipper(ill), Goat(ill)Scrounger(relatives in town), IMAX
(committements), and Halifax (committements) at home in their kennels,
Viking, Fireball, and the Sungod rendevoused in Lakeview to load the C1
racing canoe and Penobscot'16 (sharpest entry of alll Old Town canoes)
onto Helga's Toyota at 7:30pm to drive under cover of darkness to the
Park, arriving around 9:15. Leaving our canoes tied to the cars we put our
gear on our backs, we hiked into Camp Site 'A', an uneventfull, 200 meter,
3 minute trek. It was cool but extremely clear night, the stars brightly
lighting the sky. While Fireball lived up to his name and got a blaze
going, (while he was stoking the fire I noticed two pairs of eyes coming
out of the woods, seems there were a couple German Shepards at a near by
Camp. Greg was not impressed when he turned around to see this 100+ pound
animal sniffing his crotch.) Viking and Sungod erected the the tents, just
in time to realize it was starting to rain. Oh well, time to check and see
if there TP in the room out back. Now it was raining, time to turn in.
Woke up around 6:00am, actually woke up for short visits outdoors at
12:00 and 2:00, and it was still raining----hard---- looks like a nice?
day this is going to be. Then at 6:45 it stopped. I crawled out of my bag
and wondered down the 200 meters to the parking lot to see if any runners
we didn't know about were going to arrive. It was now 7:15 and Viking and
Fireball arrived to use the 'less' smelly privy---They all stink. No
runners--Our responsibilities were now just to have a good time, what to
-Pack up and paddle around the Northern loop, setting up somewhere
enroute, continuing the next day to Jake's Landing? This would entail a 10
km walk back to our car.
-Pack up, drive to Mersey River, do a two day loop of the Peskowesk
area, back to our car. This would still entail taking down our wet tent
etc., and breaking camp.
-Our third option was to keep site 'A' as our base camp and do an out
and back through the North/West Lakes. This was our choice.
It was looking like it might clear, then it wasn't, then it was----it
never did. After Viking cooked a hugh breakfast of 1 pound of greasy bacon
and scrambled a dozen eggs, we were in the water around 9:30am. Big Dam
Lake was 'glass', it was magical as we paddled the 4km to portage #4, an
800 meter torture, then it was along the 4km Still Brook canal, bit of
rain sprinkles but nice. We were now onto Frozen Ocean Lake, and I
emphsize the name, it was now windy and cool (cold), as we paddled the 2km
to Wilderness Site #8, where we planned lunch at the Adirondack there.
We met Keith Taylor (found out to be a neighbour of Judy Hunt on Grand
Lake), Peggy Martin, and their dog Molly, who faithfully chased an orange
ball all over the peninsula. We re-established a smoldering fire and tried
to warm our wet bods. After exchanging stories, emails, they were off to a
new site on Lake Kejimkujik (#20 at the mouth of the West River), and we
were heading back to our base camp. It was quite choppy and
wind/sprinkles, and getting colder--a few flurries now in the air. Sure
wouldn't want to dump.
On the way back we found Tim Farmer, who was to run the loop, with his
wife trying to forge across Still Brook at site #5. We generously ferried
them across. They also had a dog, seems we were the only ones in the park
with our K9's at home. It was now definitely getting cold--I am coming of
the opinion that Remembrance Day is the true start of winter in NS. We
have not been blessed with very many nice warm days over the years.
Back at camp, get the fire going, cook supper, entertain Tim and Mrs. Tim
as they passed through after completing their 25km hike, and now it was
dark-and almost 6:00pm. I said I am staying up till at least 7:00, and
immediately sat near the fire. In 15 minutes I was alone and talking to
myself, with nothing interesting to tell me. Off to bed, it was going to
be a long night.
Got up for a short walk, it was now 10:00pm, it is going to be a long
night--the tent is frozen, snuggle back down, only up once more until
7:00am and light--12+ hours sleep, and I wasn't tired. There is a bit of
snow around but it looks like a nice day.
Stuffed gear into packs, 200 meters out to car, breakfast at Caledonia,
bacon, eggs, homemade toast--super at the Touch of Dough, a real goooood
greasy spoon. Could be a regular stopping place.
Home and showered by noon to re-establish home life with C.S. Lewis and
Cheers, love and kisses