09 Aug
2020
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Vintage Boat Day in Muskoka

Yesterday morning we witnessed the magnificent antique and classic boats on the water here in Muskoka. There are no boat shows this year with Covid-19 so they decided to join together and do a little tour of the lakes. I made this short video on Lake Rosseau as we navigated around Tobin Island bouncing in their wake. Many of these boats were designed and built right here in Muskoka up to 100 years ago. They are a glorious sight to behold as they cut through the water. I hope you enjoy and feel free to share.
Thank you to the Antique and Classic Boat Society Toronto branch.



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

02 Aug
2020
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Trains, Planes, Steamships and Automobiles

There was a time when people arrived in Muskoka by rail and then steamship. These days some arrive by private jet and helicopters. And then there are others that arrive by personal float planes right to their docks. These are just a handful I noticed on Lake Rosseau recently. I arrived by the seat of my pants. 😛



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water

23 Jul
2020
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Vintage Muskoka Postcards

Last year a gentleman showed up at the cottage and told us he grew up on the property. Apparently his Grandfather had purchased the land in the 1920 and built a cabin. He promised to send me lots of photos of the old cabin and surroundings. He dropped them off a few weeks ago and these post cards were included.



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

19 Jul
2020
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Social Distancing at Muskoka Resorts. The New World

Social Distancing resort style. I was out on the Seadoo for the first time this season and thought I would drop by the JW Marriott on Lake Rosseau to see what was happening, if anything. I was surprised to see many people in the bay kayaking and canoeing. It appears the hotel is open unlike Cleveland’s House which won’t open this season at all. As I approached the beach area I noticed these isolation pods setup across the property. It’s a new world we are living.

 



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

15 Jul
2020
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Champlain Island Boathouse

Hey now! – I’m staying fairly active in and around Muskoka even though Covid-19 has put a damper on any socializing. That works just fine for me and my INFJ personality type. I’m quite content riding around on the lakes checking things out. There’s nothing more therapeutic for me in getting out on the water. I’m still posting at least one photo per day on social media with most being right here on Instagram.  Here is a recent scene from my Seadoo while balancing an iPhone. Chaplain Island boathouse Lake Joseph in Muskoka. Please click for a larger photo.



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

15 Jun
2020
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6 Comments

COVID-19 Casualty

It is exciting to be back in cottage country and out on the water. I drove by Clevelands House recently to see if anything was going on. Cleves has been my litmus test to get an idea on how busy things are in Muskoka.  I have to say it was a bit of a disappointment when I approached the 150 year old resort. The docks looked dirty with debris, the iconic Muskoka chairs were not lined up and it looked completely abandoned. A bit surreal to actually see this. Shortly after my visit I received the following notice.

It is with a heavy heart that we will not be opening Clevelands House Resort accommodations this season. However, we are excited to plan for the future, and look forward to unveiling the long-term vision soon. Please be advised that the Rock Golf Course and SWS Boatworks Marine at Clevelands House are now open for the season. The opening dates Pie Wood Fired Pizza, Abbey’s Bake House and the Marine Yoga Studio will be announced shortly. Stay safe & healthy.

In my opinion Clevelands House has not been the same since the Cornell family sold it. It became part of the late Ken Fowlers big vision to establish a village in Minett that included the Red Leaves Resort, (JW Marriott Hotel) Wallace Marine (now SWS), Clevelands House, Lakeside Lodge and the Rock Golf Course. Unfortunately the vision wasn’t successful with many of the properties falling into  receivership. In recent times successful Canadian businessman Mitchell Goldhar has purchased the 1200 acre properties with much optimism. Many cottagers are looking forward to seeing how things go in the future. You know its definitely strange times when Cleves won’t be open for the summer of 2020




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

28 Apr
2020
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3 Comments

Missing Muskoka

Along with COVID19 guidelines the Ontario Government has recommended that people do not travel for non-essential purposes. Many families that own cottages as secondary residences have been asked to stay away until the curve of COVID19 cases flattens out. Although there is no actual law forbidding people to check on their properties people are asked to cooperate.  I am aware of quite a few cottage owners that are staying in their cottages, minding their own business and self isolating. Some live in large cities where there is a high density of people and feel much safer being in their cottage residences. I can’t say I blame them. Many of the local people are very upset with the influx of visitors to the area because there is simply not enough resources to support everyone. Especially if there were large medical emergencies to break out. I get that too. Personally I have not visited Muskoka in 2020 and I look forward to getting back when there are positive signs of this pandemic flattening out. Let us hope that we see some sort of normalcy and we get to enjoy our beloved place among the tall pines, beautiful granite and sparking waters in the near future.



In: in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

02 Mar
2020
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Summer Ahead

Some encouraging words



In: in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

01 Feb
2020
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5 Comments

My Top 9 Instagram Photos

Interesting enough my Top 9 Instagram photos for 2019 are all Muskoka related. If you want to connect on Instagram where I post one photo per day you can follow me at: instagram.com/edboutilier



In: in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

04 Jan
2020
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2020 – The Year of Perfect Vision

Really, 2020? – Weren’t we just partying like it was 1999? – Wishing you Love, Health and Happiness.

p.s. – I made this with an iPhone



In: in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

27 Dec
2019
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5 Comments

Transitioning into a New Decade

I’m taking a little break on the beach as we transition into a new decade. I’ve just come to realized that this Blog will be 12 years old. I certainly have not posted as much in the past few years as social media has been more available to share photographs on. Especially Instagram where I post one photo per day. Many people arrive here as a result of a search of a childhood memory or a particular place they have visited. I will endeavor to carry on the tradition of adding Muskoka content. Best in the New Year to all. 🙂



In: in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

13 Dec
2019
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Ice Forming

The ice has started to form on the Muskoka lakes now. It is usually the barge and work boats that are the last off the lakes and I believe that has happened now. Things are growing even more quieter until the sleds get out on the trails.  Muskoka just had a 50cm dump of snow 2 days ago. Winter has indeed set in.



In: boathouses of muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

08 Nov
2019
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First Snow, Last Ride

It was my last Seadoo ride of the season on what turned out to be our first snow at the Cottage. Oh yeah it was a chilly one. You think I could have picked a better day but the Seadoo was at The Cove Marina after being repaired. I had sucked in a piece of wood a week earlier and wanted to get it repaired before I put it away for the season. I made it back to the cottage to unthaw and put everything away for the season. Until next year. 



In: in and around muskoka ontario

30 Oct
2019
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Drifting Amongst the October Sky

It has been a little chilly on the lake especially traveling around by Seadoo. If you layer up it is not too bad and the trade-off of being the only one on the lake is so worth it. I’ve visited this little outcropping on Lake Joseph a few times in the past. It is near the old abandoned Fairy Island cottage. I get close and just shut off the machine and drift into the rocks. There wasn’t a soul around except for me and a few seagulls. It is so peaceful in a therapeutic sort of way to just sit and take it all in. I included a cropped version and the original full framed photo taken with a Nikon D700 and the 10-24mm wide-angled lens.



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

20 Sep
2019
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Lost in Rock Formations

They were lost in rock formations and doing a little fishing. Scenes from my Seadoo on Lake Joe



In: in and around muskoka ontario, on the water

12 Sep
2019
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1899 Map and Chart of the Muskoka Lakes

There used to be an old log cabin on our cottage property that was built in 1924 by the Davidson family. The old cabin was dismantled around 2002 and taken somewhere else for future reconstruction. One day a contractor visited and gifted me this map that he found inside a wall of the old cabin on the property. I’ve since researched it and found it was published in 1899 by G. W. Marshall of Toronto. It includes an index of summer cottages, owners, hotels and boarding houses on the lakes. The map I have is a copy from 1975 by the Reverend Hugh G Carmichael of Bala, Ontario. Many of these old maps were made to show the railway lines and this one says, “Map showing the route of the Parry Sound Railway, Crane and Blackstone Lakes, Blackstone Harbor, Georgian Bay. I now have the map framed and mounted behind glass for the cottage wall. A nice little keepsake.

 



In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario

02 Sep
2019
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4 Comments

The Peerless II

Ahoy Captain Randy Potts.! I was out on Lake Rosseau recently and crossed paths with the Peerless II boat. Always a pleasure to see her on the beautiful Muskoka waters.  The Peerless II ship was built in 1946 in Bronte, Ontario and operated for over 50 years as a gas and oil delivery vessel on the Musk0ka Lakes.  Captain Randy purchased the boat in 2003 restoring it and turning it into a popular tourist experience that leaves from the locks in Port Carling.  I highly recommend this intimate tour with interesting  historical commentary by Captain Randy. They do a tour of Millionaires Row on Lake Muskoka, Lake Rosseau and private tours for weddings or other social occasions.



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

20 Aug
2019
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5 Comments

Muskoka Modern

This photo is representative of the new style of architecture that adorns the shorelines of Muskoka Lakes. For the past decade many older family cottages have been torn down and replaced by large glass and steel structures. Some call them McMansions. I’m not being judgmental on whether this is right or wrong. Muskoka has always attracted power and wealthy people with unique tastes. This 7500 sq ft abode is currently available for a mere $14.75M CAD



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

13 Aug
2019
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2 Comments

A sure Sign of Cottage Life

S I G N S – A typical navigational aid in cottage country. Sorry GPS or an App won’t help you on this one. Strictly analog living 🙂



In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

23 Jul
2019
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Rest Harbour Barn

This is the inside of an old barn that was on a property dating back to about 140 years. It was once owned by the Judd family who were well known in the Minett area of Muskoka. The barn and an old boathouse were for sale back when I photographed them in 2010. I was a little careful not to go prowling inside the barn as it didn’t look very safe. A year or so after my visit I heard the barn had collapsed to the ground. I noticed this little detail of a cross or shamrock at the peak of the roof. It is my last memory of the barn and I had hoped that whomever the new owners would be that they would save this as a momento. I was recently invited back to this property where the owners have built a architecturally beautiful cottage and boathouse. Unfortunately they were not aware of the carved detail and it was lost in the ruble. I was able to provide them with my photos of the boathouse and beautiful acreage they now enjoy.



In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, uncategorized

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