Backcountry camping in Algonquin park, Canada - Part1

by Ram Ya October. 03, 2016 3541 views

I have been wanting to visit Algonquin national park for several years. Mostly due to the amazing fall foliage photography I have seen from this park. The winding roads and the red and yellow tree lines are almost synonymous with the image of Canada. After all, most of the color display comes from the Red Maple-- the iconic symbol of our national flag.

A maple leaf by the lake - Algonquin Park, Ontario, Canada

We decided to do one last canoe trip to Algonquin park before the summer end. We planned it to coincide with the peak of fall colors ( the report can be found here). However, it was little tricky due to the hotter than normal summer we are having here in Canada. When we finally reached the park, it was about 80 to 90% peaked. As you will see below, this is nothing to complain about.

Scenery on highway 60 leading up to the Algonquin park

Since the drive was 5 hours, we rented sleeping tents and spent the Friday night close to the park entrance. I woke up early in the morning by the sound of birds chirping and blue hour light reaching my bunk bed. I rushed out to grab my camera gear from the car. As soon as I opened my trunk, I realized I had forgotten my tripod! I was upset but a friend had a small tripod and I was determined to make it work by sharing his. It's a good thing that he is not an early riser :)

Sunrise by the Algonquin outfitters sleeping cbains

We spent an hour taking sunrise shots by the lake just opposite of Algonquin Outfitters. We then went into the store to have our breakfast and grab our canoe gear. This was a 2-day trip but we had to take two canoes this time because we had 5 people in our group. Once everything was packed, we headed to our launch point located at the Canoe Lake.

Launch point for the canoe trip - The Canoe Lake, Algonquin Park

The guide told us that Tom Thomson lake would be the best for sunrise and Sunset photography. Once reached, we realized there is not much color change on this particular lake. So we turned around and headed back to a colorful secluded area we just passed on the Fawn Lake. This turned out to be a wise decision.

Fall color reflections on the lake.

Fall color reflections again

Two maples on top of a mossy rock - Campsite, Algonquin Park

Since it was forecasted to rain our first night, we hurried to set up the two tents and cook our dinner. We would soon learn the importance of properly setting up the tents! Our dinner that night was steak, boiled potatoes, and broccoli. Not the easiest menu to cook when you only have a single burner! However, it was delicious thanks to all the spices and butter we used.

Campsite overlooking the Fawn Lake, Algonquin Park, Canada

Steak getting ready over the campfire

Our meal for the night - Steak, boiled broccoli and potatoes with butter

While the dinner was cooking I tried few more shots of the lake. It was a very cloudy day and normally I wouldn't be able to see those rocks on the lake bed. I used a circular polarizer and it helped a lot to cancel out that cloudy reflections off the water. I recommend a circular polarizer to anyone who likes shooting landscape photos. It really helps if you do any kind of photography around water, skies, or even foliage.

Beautiful reflections of fall colors by the campsite.

Thanks for reading this post and your thoughtful comments. Please stay tuned for the part 2 of this trip! This is also a submission to our weekly theme, Fall Colors. If you like to submit an entry or learn about photographing fall foliage, please read Tiffany's post here.

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There are 25 comments , add yours!
Chantelle Walsh 3 years, 12 months ago

this makes me want to visit Canada even more, thanks for sharing

3 years, 12 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Chantelle Walsh 3 years, 12 months ago

You should definitely visit! Right now Toronto is a bit cold but in summer and fall it is wonderful. If you come, you should also plan to visit Banff, Alberta. You will be amazed by the scenery if you like nature photography :)

3 years, 12 months ago Edited
Laurence D 4 years, 1 month ago

la sérénité du lieu est bien présente dans toutes ces photos, merci pour ce partage.

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Laurence D 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you for the kind words, Laurence.

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Daris Pro 4 years, 1 month ago

#2 is the most stunning shot ever.thanks for sharing.

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Daris Pro 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you so much, Dario!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Vladislav Belousov 4 years, 1 month ago


4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Jay Boggess 4 years, 1 month ago

WOW! Love how you describe your adventure, punctuated so brilliantly with these awesome images! Thanks for the filter tip. I've never tried that. Bravo!

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Jay Boggess 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you, Jay! This was one of the best adventures I have taken. Something about staying in outdoors :)

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Jay Boggess Replied to Ram Ya 3 years, 10 months ago

Glad you have the freedom to have such activities, especially being young and adventuresome. Thanks for the generous sharing of your life w/us, with such brilliant images!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Mialeena Nguyen 4 years, 1 month ago

Another wonderful camping trip! Gorgeous colours, very big contrast to our autumn here in Australia.

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Mialeena Nguyen 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you, Mialeena! Haven't seen a blog from you in a while. Please keep us posted :)

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Becky Brannon 4 years, 1 month ago

#7 - love the contrast of colors

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Becky Brannon 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you so much, Becky!
I placed the leaves in this way but the colors were really bright red like in this photo :)

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Julie Domingo 4 years, 1 month ago

all are just amazingly beautiful!!!!! arggghhhh! autumn! autumn!

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Julie Domingo 3 years, 10 months ago

Yes! Love the autumn. I see that you are traveling again ;) can't wait to see what you up to!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 4 years, 1 month ago

Another amazing post of these fantastic Canada landscapes. It makes me feel to return to this beautiful country again.

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Antonio Gil 3 years, 10 months ago

I hope you return one day soon and visit us in Toronto! Your photography skills would do justice to this landscape!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Wing Lui 4 years, 1 month ago

Just beautiful!

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Wing Lui 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you so much, Lui!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Tiffany Mueller 4 years, 1 month ago

These are awesome, I think I need to do more canoe trips :) The photo of the two maple leaves on moss is ūüĎĆ. Those colors! Well done, looks like you had another great adventure with your camera!

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Tiffany Mueller 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you, Tiffany! Red maples are quite a site all over Canada during the fall!

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Mooreeffoc 4 years, 1 month ago

Great post!

4 years, 1 month ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Mooreeffoc 3 years, 10 months ago

None of the photos are as cool as your cover photo! Where is that?
Thanks for the kind words :)

3 years, 10 months ago Edited
Mooreeffoc Replied to Ram Ya 3 years, 10 months ago

Thanks! That's the Isle of Skye, Scotland. Beautiful place, though I hope to go back once when it's not so rainy :)

3 years, 10 months ago Edited