Too Many Marshmallows: Fall Camping 2021

We’re back from our fall camping trip, my friends. Feeling refreshed, restored, and at least mentally healthier. Physically, well, too many marshmallows, more butter tarts than are good for us, and too many hours spent reading instead of biking or walking mean we have to climb back on the fitness and healthy-eating bandwagon. Pretty darned quick. Ha.

gravel road and fall foliage near Algonquin Park, Ontario.
The road to somewhere.

We had five beautiful crisp fall nights. Crisp nights are the best thing about fall camping. Crisp nights mean great campfires. Great for sipping wine and listening to a CD that our friend Jo Barkley-Probst gave us. Jo is a golfing buddy of Hubby’s, and he’s a great musician. I wish that I’d been able to make his CD the soundtrack for my video, but sadly I don’t know how to do that yet. Still, you can enjoy some clips of his music on the video.

Scene on the Little Bonnechere river near Bonnechere Provincial Park where we were fall camping.
The Little Bonnechere River

We didn’t spend all week sitting on our behinds, though. We went for a couple of wonderful walks, and a great drive down some country roads. And we saw some sights that, even though we’ve been coming to this area for decades, were new to us.

Old rusted trucks parked in a field. Near Combermere, Ontario.
Love these old fellas. They’ve been put out to pasture, literally.

You can check out the history of this Ottawa Valley gem here if you like. We’ve driven through Rockingham a few times on our meanderings, and we don’t know how we’ve managed to miss this wonderful little church until now.

Rockingham Church, Rockingham, Ontario. Noticed on a drive on our fall camping trip.
The tiny, historic, and beautiful Rockingham Church

So pour yourself a cup of tea and have a look at the video below. I tried to include a sampling of what we got up to, up the valley, on our fall camping trip this past week.

That’s it for me today, folks. I have a mountain of laundry to do this weekend. And then it’s all about planning the rest of my fall shopping. I have added a couple of things to my fall wish list. Sigh. It was ever thus. I have to stop perusing Pinterest when I’m on my exercise bike.

What have you been up to this week?

tress and a bog on the edge of Algonquin Park, Ontario.
Somewhere on the edges of Algonquin Park

P.S. If you are interested, you can read about our fall hiking trip up the valley in 2020 here. And about our trip to Slovenia in this post.


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37 thoughts on “Too Many Marshmallows: Fall Camping 2021”

  1. I’m so glad to hear your camping trip went so well and that the weather was so cooperative!
    On the other side of the country, we’ve had the first of the weather-related ferry-sailing cancellations—no more procrastinating with the fall wardrobe. I’m just back from a few days baby-sitting on the island and have somehow been too busy/distracted to blog for a week! But managed to book some travel stuff for the end of the month and also succumbed to some retail temptation—boots! ‘tis the season…. Now Paul’s just brought me a cuppa and I’m off to watch your vlog

    1. We had good weather especially at night. Cool, clear, and crisp… perfect for campfires and sleeping. But we are paying for it now… rain, rain, and more rain.

  2. Loved the video & it looks like you had a great trip . All those small towns , big cloud filled skies & good music . I’ve never had toasted marshmallows or even heard of butter pies but I’m sure I’d like them . Twelve marshmallows sounds about right to me . Any more would be greedy 😁
    The articles about Rockingham church & the Rev Watson were very interesting . He put me in mind of my Gt Grandfather who hopped over the Atlantic abandoning my Gt Grandmother ( pregnant with my grandfather ) & then claiming to be an aristocratic when he got there . It was easy then , you could be whoever you wanted if you moved far enough . We only managed to track him down through family history sites .
    We’ve been busy tidying the house & garden as we have friends visiting for the day soon – first time since lockdowns began & she’s a very keen gardener . Hope we pass the inspection !
    What else ? Oh yes I’ve read a lovely book , A Town Called Solace by Mary Lawson . A new author to me . I enjoyed the Canada setting & I know a lot more about Canada now than I used to do , thanks to you & Frances .

    1. I won’t be eating marshmallows for a while. I “ate myself sick” as my mum used to say. Or maybe just sick of them… not really sick per se. I love Mary Lawson’s work. Her novel Crow Lake is one of my all-time favourites. Good to know that A Town Called Solace is good too. I have it on order at the library. Hope the “inspection” goes well. 🙂

  3. As a Canadian living in Ireland, I loved seeing the colours of the leaves again in your video and it also prompted me to dig out my butter tart recipe which is normally reserved for Christmas instead of mince tarts. Who can resist a butter tart? Uniquely Canadian and delicious!

  4. Thanks for another scenic journey along with you. I always learn from your trips about an area that I have not visited. I enjoyed your shot of the the old trucks, they look like they have personalities. Oh yes, the marshmallows, toasted just right with soft insides and crisp outsides, I never know when to stop. We may have to have a little fire on a dry chilly evening this month. There is an ongoing debate on our radio station about butter tarts, plain or with raisins etc. and I am a pecan person. One little bakery in a neighbouring town has a list of 12 different ones, some of which I would never try and there is even a butter tart road trip in the summer. Enough about that, glad you had a good trip. By the way, this weekend was my “rummage” weekend and it was very enlightening, with more space in the closets now. Thank you!

    1. Those old trucks did look as if they had personalities. Congratulations on a successful rummage, Diane.
      FYI… I prefer my butter tarts with raisins.

  5. Love all your beautiful fall scenery. Thank you for the tour. You can have my share of the marshmallows, I am all for the butter tarts, love them way too much. Need to go dig out my Grandmother’s recipe. Can’t wait to see what’s on your fall wish list. Mine grows daily.

  6. Fall is depressing. Months of rich, fragrant oxygen producing foliage dying…as brutally cold and uncivilized weather lies ahead. Roughing it for me is staying at a Sheraton.

    1. Fall is not my favorite season, despite my “love the one you’re with” philosophy, so I get your “”Fall is depressing. ” notion. And my definition of camping is a hotel without cable, so I do get that as well. But Sue paints such a picture of the fall of our imagination that I can’t help wanting to be a part of it, despite the falling temperatures, and the colder weather, and the ::shudder:: camping bits. 🙂

  7. Fall is so beautiful when you get some good weather! And I love, love, love butter tarts. Sounds like a perfect trip.

  8. Thanks for taking us along. Amazed how there is limited traffic and no other people. Looks like a fun time.

  9. Alergies? Love The picture of the old church! The only way I will ever see color like that is to leave Florida and go north–somewhere, anywhere… the maybe I might. The difference is amazing- you are looking at Puffer coats and I am wondering if I will ever wear that chunky cardigan. Hard imagine the climate differences! Oh well, happy fall, you’all. Stay well!

  10. Mary Lou Hartman

    Hubby and I enjoyed your trip. Beautiful scenery and he mentioned that the homes seem so close to the road. Did you camp in a park? Hope you never need the bear spray! Thanks for taking us along.- Mary Lou

    1. Where I was filming along the main roads in small towns and villages the roads have been widened over time, and the front yards of the older homes diminished as a result. We did camp at a provincial park.

  11. That was fun- thanks for taking us along! I was curious to see what the towns looked like and they’re really not so different from the small towns we have outside of Seattle, Washington USA. I love old buildings and it’s so refreshing to see that they haven’t all been torn down. It’s a different story in the city though!
    Hope to be able to explore more of Canada soon!

    1. No, they’re not so different are they? Although when I was editing the video I noticed that a lot of the old houses had “mansard roofs.” Hubby says they are common here. But they aren’t where I grew up. As well, in certain areas in eastern Ontario most of the historic homes are built of stone. The traditional homes in Fredericton, and along the Saint John River, where I grew up are quite different to here. I find all that really interesting.

  12. Love, love, love fall camping! It’s always so peaceful. We enjoyed our last few days in the trailer recently and now it’s all ready for winter. Thanks for sharing your camping trip with us! I love the old trucks and the bright red leaves. We get lots of yellow and gold here in Alberta, but not much red.

    We were in Bonnechere Caves eons ago when our kids were young. I think it was 1991. We had acquaintances who moved from here and built a home in that area. Since our boys had been friends, we stopped for a visit on a cross country trip.

    1. I guess you don’t have as many maple trees as we do in Alberta. Those old trucks are so lovely, aren’t they? If one can say wrecked and rusty abandoned machinery is lovely. Ha. I’ve never been to the Bonnechere Caves.

  13. You must have forgotten one of the Rules of Camping. Marshmallows toasted over an open fire and eaten while still sticky/melted and warm have no calories 😉

  14. It was interesting indeed,to watch your trip,small canadian towns,nature,churches,trails…..I would like to see more of it next time (I didn’t hear Hubby well,unfortunately)
    I’ve never tried marshmallows on the camp fire (or any fire)-it seems they are so good,so maybe it is better that they stay mystery to me

  15. Hi again, this recipe always gets the thumbs up from everyone – Butter Tarts
    Your favourite pastry to make 12 tarts
    ½ cup of raisins
    ¼ cup soft butter
    ½ cup brown sugar
    ½ cup corn syrup (or Golden Syrup for UK readers)
    1 egg, slightly beaten
    1 tsp. vanilla
    Cover the raisins with boiling water and let stand for 5 min. to plump up. Put butter, sugar and syrup in a bowl and add hot, drained raisins. Stir until the butter is melted. Add the egg and vanilla. Put pastry shells in a muffin tin and sprinkle some raisins in the bottom of each shell. Fill ¾ full with sugar and egg mixture. Bake at 220 C (450 F) for 12-15 min. Loosen slightly and leave in the tin for 10 min. then remove and cool on a rack. Make sure you bake these in a non-stick tin because if you don’t and they bubble over, you will never get them out of the tin. Take it from one who knows!!

  16. I was going to ask you what Butter Tarts are (being Texan) but, as I read the comments I found the recipe. Then it hit me; a few years ago while camping over Christmastime, we made friends with a couple from Quebéc. Looking for a cookie recipe traditional to them, to make as a gift, I found a recipe for butter tarts and made them. Wow, delicious!
    Also, that old church is lovely. I’m a sucker for the old cemeteries that go with them. I’m glad you had a great time, sounds like a delightful trip!

  17. Jennifer Larking

    Your trip looked great and I enjoyed all the sights. As for the butter tarts, nothing could be better than a Canadian butter tart. I have made them and they are good but oh, not as good as the shop bought ones.

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