01 May
2013
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A Very Full Moon

You can get a clear sense of how high the water levels are on the Moon River from this photo looking out towards the Bala Falls.  Apparently water levels are on the way down on Lake Muskoka followed by Lake Rosseau and Joseph. Check out the handy little graph below with the water levels plotted over the past year.

MoonBoathouse-600

This is a graph of the water levels on the Moon River from May 01, 2012 to May 01, 2013. Note the huge increase this year compared to last year. You can create your own graph and analyze the data by clicking here. For additional resources on the Muskoka River water management including the operating procedures for maintaining water levels, click here

WaterLevels_600



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

24 Jul
2012
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6 Comments

North Branch of the Muskoka River

This is the north branch of the Muskoka River flowing out of Mary Lake in quaint Port Sydney, Ontario. The river meanders towards Bracebridge into Lake Muskoka and out to the Moon River and down to Georgian Bay. There are 5 dams on this system with power generated at High Falls, Wilson Falls and the Bracebridge Falls.

The Muskoka River Watershed is the largest watershed in the Muskoka district covering an area of 466,000 hectares. The watershed communities are: Dwight, Dorset, Baysville, Huntsville, Port Sydney, Bracebridge, Gravenhurst, Bala, Port Carling and MacTier

 



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

10 Sep
2011
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10 Comments

Travelling Down the Joseph River

Another scene from a Jestski –  I left Lake Joseph and found my way into the Joseph River headed towards Lake Rosseau with the sun sinking on my back. I did a little spin-o-rama to try and catch the sunset at the top end of the river.  There is an interesting boathouse here and I think maybe I will return on another day to capture it in more detail.

I have always wondered if the Joe River is a real river? It seems to be a rock cut that connects Lake Joseph to Lake Rosseau. I have  heard Lady Eaton had the rocks blasted out many moons ago so she could have her steamship navigate through the rocks instead of traveling down to Port Sandfield. If you know the story please set me straight.



In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, on the water

29 Apr
2019
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5 Comments

Catastrophic Flooding Hits Muskoka

As you are probably aware by now Muskoka and other parts of Ontario are experiencing catastrophic flooding. It is not unusual to experience high water in Muskoka during the spring freshet however it is not normal to experience such serious flooding as we are getting now. The first large flood was in 2013 and I documented it on this Blog. There was another in 2017 and now an even bigger and likely more damaging flood happening right now.

Below are some of the photos of this disastrous 2019 flood mostly taken on Lake Muskoka. The brunt of the damage is on Lake Muskoka as both branches of the Muskoka River flow into it as well as water from Lakes Joseph and Rosseau. The Ministry follows a guideline set out by the Muskoka River Water Management Plan and draws down the lakes through the dam located in Bala, Ontario which exits into the Moon River and down to Georgian Bay. The draw down is supposed to prevent this kind of flooding. It appears everything was done according to plan however we still received disastrous results. There was a record amount of snow this winter combined with lots of rain during the run-off. It is difficult to say whether anything else could have been done to mitigate the damage resulting from these floods.

Photo disclaimer:
Please note that none of these photos belong to me. They have been gathered from various social media posts mainly Muskoka 411 News and RS Muskoka. I always like to acknowledge the original source of photos however it has been difficult to track everyone down due to the influx of photos posted. If I have posted your photo please let me know and I will gladly credit you and thank you for sharing.



In: boathouses of muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, uncategorized

11 Apr
2017
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2 Comments

The Spring Melt

I visited Muskoka yesterday for the first time since the fall season which explains my Blog inactivity. I spent the winter months in the warm climes of the Hawaiian Islands. It was blissful!

I was in Bala yesterday checking out the falls (and the construction) and there is significant water flowing out of Lake Muskoka into the Moon River to Georgian Bay. The ice should be off the lakes by the end of this week. Water levels are down to summer levels on the lakes at present and will rise over the next 10 days. Hopefully no flooding this year.



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

25 Apr
2016
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3 Comments

High Water Levels in Muskoka

I’ve been visiting Muskoka recently dealing with the high water problems that many of us are suffering through. This is the second time in the past few years this has happened with the first being in 2013. I made a 2 min video showing the extreme volumes of water flowing from the Bracebridge Falls into Lake Muskoka and then out through the Bala Falls into the Moon River. There are some photos of the damage this high water has caused at the end of the video.



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

07 May
2013
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3 Comments

Muskoka’s New Water Park

Walking Wading through Jaspen Park on the Moon River near Bala during the incredible spring runoff and floods of 2013.

Walkinthepark_600



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

29 Apr
2013
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7 Comments

Come Hell or High Water

Here are a few phone camera pics of the high water levels around Muskoka. The first photo is from my friend Cheryl who received it from her friend Lynn. It is taken down stream on the Moon River in Bala where reports of the water levels have hit up to 9 feet high. Check out the boat port roof in the photo – insane!

The other two photos were taken in Bracebridge recently where the water is so powerful it cascades over-top of the damn. Lake Muskoka docks and boathouses are flooded out as well as Lake Joe and Lake Rosseau. Some of the smaller lakes have had high water levels but seem to be recovering faster than the big lakes.

MoonBoathouse_600

BracebridgeFalls_600

BracebridgeFalls-2_600



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns

04 Jul
2011
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3 Comments

Fairyland

On June 25th I had the opportunity to tour some of the interesting properties in this years Doors Open Ontario for the Muskoka area.  In 1929 twin sisters Marguerite Boyce and Violet Hobbs arrived in Bala, pitched a tent at what would become Jaspen Park on the Moon River near Bala and started to sell their paintings. A year later they put a $100 down payment on a nearby cottage called Hollyhock and started a love affair between themselves and Muskoka that would last for decades.

At first they sold their paintings, then expanded to a gift shop and eventually a tea room. One of the important features was the wishing well out front (still there) which was created at the beginning of WW II. Visitors were encouraged to throw coins in which helped send more than 1000 gift parcels to Canadian servicemen and prisoners-of-war during war time. They also developed children’s doll exhibits and several generations of kids regarded the Twins Studio as a very enchanting place. After Marguerite passed away in the 1950’s Violet renamed the studio Fairyland and would dress daily in organdy. Many children believed she was a real fairy.

While I was photographing the inside of the cottage two elderly ladies arrived and displayed gifts they had purchased as little girls. They were quite emotional as they described their Fairyland experiences and how magical it was for them to visit as children. It was the first time the doors of Fairyland had been open to the public since 1974.

For a more detailed story on Fairyland courtesy of Jack and Linda Hutton please Click Here



In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, tripin around towns

29 Mar
2009
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4 Comments

The Rushing Waters of Muskoka’s Bala Falls

I was finally able to get up to Muskoka this past weekend after being away for a month. For some reason life just keeps getting in the way. I was curious to see how the water levels were as we move into the spring thaw. It appears the lakes are not as high as last year around this time even though we have had almost as much snow. This is a shot of the Bala Falls with the water flowing out of Lake Muskoka down the Moon River and into Georgian Bay.

As I hiked down the rocks I found this abandoned boat resting on the sunny shore.

For a Boat Sized Photo Please Click on the Image



In: in and around muskoka ontario

10 Nov
2008
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3 Comments

Lest We Forget

Remembrance Day, also know as Poppy Day. We are so removed and insulated from what it was like for our dads, brothers, uncles, grandfathers and friends to go off to war and never arrive home again or return changed forever. We now take those sacrifices for granted. Please ponder it a moment…

Taken in Bala Ontario overlooking the Moon River



In: in and around muskoka ontario, tripin around towns, uncategorized

24 Apr
2008
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2 Comments

Bala Falls is working overtime – off loading the water from Lake Muskoka

Muskoka’s Bala Falls is located in the town of Bala, Canada and widely known as the Cranberry Capital of Ontario. The extremely high water on Lake Muskoka is being purged through the dam. The water flows down the Moon River into one of the Great Lakes, Georgian Bay (Lake Huron)
Bala Falls is Angry



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns, uncategorized

22 Apr
2008
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Extreme volumes of water gushing through Muskokas Bala Falls

The ice has finally melted off the lakes however the water levels remain very high. Tremendous volumes of water are gushing in from Algonquin Park, Huntsville, Brandy Leonard Lakes, Lake Joseph, Rosseau and other rivers and creeks. This large amount of spring run off gets dumped into Lake Muskoka and is then controlled at the falls in Bala diverting it down the Moon River into Georgian Bay.

Below is a picture of the Bala Falls. There is so much water flowing out that it has encroached on some of the park shorelines. I noticed some young kids playing here and wish they weren’t as it would be quite dangerous with freezing water temperature and extreme rapids.

Bala Falls



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water, tripin around towns, uncategorized

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