Bruised, Bitten, and Blistered

After the Gravenhurst and Bracebridge Trans Canada Trail sections, I am mending the sores on my feet, eating, and resting in a motel room in Bracebridge, ON. The last two sections of trail have been the most difficult to date, primarily due to differences in terrain and moisture regimes: a greater abundance of wetlands and the rutting of trails by these ephemeral water sources. After having waterlogged feet for days, both feet are now starting to show some wear and tear; the inability to address hot spots on my feet has resulted in infection and soreness. I will now perform some first aid on my feet to lessen the burden of these blisters before I set out again.

The landscape abruptly changed from Copper’s Falls to Bracebridge; transitioning from slight undulations in a primarily agricultural landscape to a rolling forested and wetland dominated landscape. Regardless, I was still able to make a similar daily distance of >30 km with only slightly more effort. I found out that transforming my cart into a backpack across the rolling terrain makes life easier and less painful. The sudden twisting of the cart onto my thigh at the beginning of the Copper’s Falls section was quite painful, resulting in two large bruises on my thigh, but don’t worry, the cart is ok. Using this cart is still the best option, since large sections of a less rolling landscapes and roadways are on the horizon.

I retract my statement that the mosquitoes and blackflies were kind to me. After looking in the mirror yesterday — the first time since I left Barrie, my face, neck, and back of ears illustrates nature’s vengeance. My cavalier attitude regarding insect bite management must now change: a fair warning from the forest, I guess.

After some reflection, I must be a real sight for onlookers; the stares from the motel clerk when I checked-in and the gawking from others I passed in town was possibly due to my rugged insect bite appearance, or maybe, it was the cart and sun hat I have jury rigged with a camp towel, who knows.

Below is a picture of my almost dry shoes and socks. The sun hasn’t been around much to allow me to dry my shoes and socks, but I take advantage of it whenever I can. This simple act of drying my shoes and socks on the road has saved my feet from further blisters; but, I have a trick up my sleeve for the next wetland and stream crossing.

It might not seem like it, but it was still great fun 😎

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