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July 12 – Pelee Island

This is our last day in Canada for a few days. Tomorrow, we are hoping to go to Cleveland and then we will move up the Lake Erie coast on the American side for a couple of nights (Geneva and Erie) because the distances are shorter. So, my turbo hub and phone will be shut off until I find wifi.

The first picture today was taken at the elementary school.

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I wondered about that – seemed pretty radical to have to post a sign like that!

My second picture is of the pheasant farm:

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Inside the big cage, are hundreds of pheasants. The cage is huge but is covered with netting. In the fall, all the pheasants are let go and hunted. Apparently, this is quite an event on Pelee Island. I wouldn’t want to be doing yard duty at the school while the hunt was on!

This morning, I went for another bike ride and found some neat things. The next picture is of a giant pile of old grape vines. I am not sure what will be done to them.

20120712-154600.jpg I drove around in the centre of the island and found acres and acres of grapes. The winery has over 600 acres. I also found a lot of soya beans being farmed. Pelee Island has a unique climate – it is on the same latitude as northern California and because Lake Erie is so warm, the island is ideal for farming things that are difficult to farm elsewhere in Canada.
As I was driving around, I found an honesty stall of produce (the produce is laid out on a table with a cash box and you are expected to be honest and pay up). Here’s a picture of what I bought (and yes – I was honest!).

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We are anchored out on the east side of the island – it was getting too warm at the marina. It is nice here. Cool breeze and good swimming! Tomorrow – Cleveland and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

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Posted by on July 12, 2012 in Sailing in Lake Erie

 

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July 11 – Pelee Island

Dennis wanted to leave the anchorage bright and early this morning but I slept in until 7:30! I am on holidays after all, so I didn’t feel too guilty. We left as soon as I got up and were tied up at Scudder Marine by 10:00. Dennis got my bike out for me immediately and I drove around the entire island (30 km – very flat and pretty) and did some sightseeing.

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The school has nine children from K to 8 (five of the kids are in kindergarten!) and three teachers. The high school kids have to go to the mainland unless they do some distance education and two students are actually getting their high school diploma on-line.

I had to take a picture of the shoe tree – modern art on Pelee Island!

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After lunch and a swim at the beach (the water is really warm), we ventured off to the Pelee Island Winery and had the tour! It was very interesting and we sampled five different types of wine. We had to ride our bikes back (another 9 km) and Dennis was a bit whiny because his bike is so small (the wheels are about the size of dinner plates) so I volunteered to drive it back. Huge mistake! I can see why he is so slow getting anywhere – you have to pedal like a crazy person to get anywhere! Needless to say, I won’t be volunteering to do that again. 🙂

As you can see, “Old Pink” has made an appearance…
Anyway, we had lots of fun and I will tour the island again tomorrow before we go back to the anchorage and do some real swimming before we head out to Cleveland early Friday morning.

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Posted by on July 11, 2012 in Sailing in Lake Erie

 

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July 10 – Pelee Island

We have officially been to the most southern point of Canada! We are anchored out on the west side of Pelee Island and are watching the sun go down. We left the Detroit River this morning and headed to toward Pelee Island with the cooling towers of the nuclear plant clearly visible for miles. It took us a long time to get those out of our sight. We sailed again today and it was great! It also kept Dennis occupied – he was constantly trimming the sails and making minor adjustments of lines and other nautical things. This was good for me because I like to listen to CBC’s Q from 10:00 until 11:30.

Last night, we met up with Rick and Michelle. Rick bought many of Dennis’ North Channel and Georgian Bay charts through Kijiji. He and Michelle are going up to the North Channel – leaving on Thursday – in their 25 foot C & C sailboat. They are very nice and we wish them the best of luck on their trip. I hope the weather is good for them!

On our way down the Detroit River, we saw some wildlife:

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It must have been a good day for birds because as we went by a bald rock close to Pelee Island, we saw this colony of birds:

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We got anchored safely and went swimming right away. According to the boat thermometer, the water temp is 31 degrees! It was quite warm but still very nice! The water is clean and there were many schools of tiny little fish around the boat.

We took the dinghy ashore and walked along the pebble beach. It was a bit painful on the feet but I didn’t complain (too much!). We walked almost to the end of the island – it has a sandbar at the end that had hundreds of seagulls.

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We walked back through the forest area (on a path!) and saw all sorts of interesting vegetation that we don’t see in Parry Sound! The picture of the tree is neat because it looks like it is growing from both ends.

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The forest is full of birds and mosquitoes (although the mosquitoes don’t bite unless you stop and admire the vegetation) and it was much cooler in the forest as compared to the beach.

We had another swim once we got back and are now getting ready for bed. Tomorrow, we go to Scudder Marine and will tour the island in search of Margaret Atwood!

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Posted by on July 10, 2012 in Sailing in Lake Erie

 

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