September 10-12, 2005 - Eastern shore of Lake Superior

On September 10 we pulled the motorhome and CRV out of Pukaskwa National Park separately, it took about 10 miles before we found a good spot to hook up.  It was 116 miles to Wawa, ON, where we arrived after going up and down many grades.  Here is our campsite:

This picture was taken after we went to a local hardware store and got a pipe to strengthen the homemade mast extension, but it worked.  Setup was a bit more difficult since the mast extension was not as straight as the mast, but we got online after not being online in Pukaskwa.  Here is the mast extension in action:

When we drove into town we saw the giant Canadian Goose statues, a Wawa trademark. 

Another camper for the night was Gordon, who takes really nice pictures.  Here is his website: .  He warned us about some bad grades south, since they were heading the opposite direction as we were.  We told him about Pukaskwa, but he said they needed to move too fast west to stop there. 

The next day (11th) we moved south to Sault Ste Marie, ON for two nights, just across from Sault Ste Marie, MI.  It was 134 miles and some of the grades were strong, but didn't cause us much problem.  We couldn't get a campsite that we could fit in and had a clear view of the Southwest sky, but the campground had Wi-Fi so we could get email.  Here is the campsite:

Sault Ste Marie is known for its Italian food and the campground said to go to Giovanni's.  We gave it a try after many days of our own cooking and it was very good.  The next day we signed up for the Soo Lock Tours, "Soo" is how you pronouce "Sault" and is the city's nickname.  Here is our tourboat, the Chief Shingwauk:

At the end of the same pier is this bear fishing sculpture:

We could also see the bridge to Michigan from the pier:

The tourboat took us through both the American and Canadian locks and other sights in the area.  Much of the time we had the U.S. tourboat with us, we got the impression they might be under the same ownership since personnel from each substitute on the other.  Here are pictures of the US lock from a distance and inside:

Pictures of an ore ship off the steel mill and the U.S. tourboat, Nokomis:

Here are the Canadian locks:

Here is a campground in Sault Ste Marie, MI:

We learned a lot on the tour, probably more from a passenger who had a lot of involvement in the local tourist agency.  She was on the tour with others in her family that were in town for a wedding.  We learned most people in Soo have bank accounts in Michigan so they can write checks and use credit cards without foreign transaction charges.  We learned more about why Soo was short of doctors, which we heard about in the campground.  She also knew that many in her city felt more kinship with Michigan than Ontario, they were a backwater, but she loved her city.  She was also a geocacher and knew where all the caches are in the area, see for details.

We had time to tour the lock area ourselves after the tourboat left, so we did so.  Here is a shot of a Pileated Woodpecker outside the Lock museum:

Lock Museum shots from inside:

The Canadian locks, the second showing the U.S. Coast Guard uses it:

Here is our tourboat coming through the locks with a later tour group and a ground squirrel we saw:

We decided that next time we would try to have enough time to take the , but the weather was not behaving and we decided to head back into the U.S.

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