The weather has finally warmed up enough in Ontario's Near North for us to drive all the way back to Lake Nipissing. When we first left Florida and then Georgia it was still so cold up there that we decided to stay in Michigan for some time and wait it out. After all we did not go south for the winter to return to snow flying in spring.
At Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park we had met a nice couple who owns an RV park in Grass Lake, Michigan about 2 hours from the Canadian border and we knew they would be open. That's where we spent a few weeks before coming to Powassan where we stay at our good friends', Pia and Alfons who just purchased Knowlton Ridge Equestrian Centre. It is a beautiful and very busy place with events every weekend throughout the summer. The first such event that we witnessed was a visit of the Knights of Valor who offered an educational day to schools of the area.
The kids got to see birds of prey and learn about those majestic aviators and hunters. Then the knights came to the arena for some medieval games and jousting competition. What a great thing to watch! Dressed in the garments of the time, the horses all decked out for the event they showed some amazing skills on horseback. Using spears, lances and swords the knights fought for points and honor. I had never known just how hard real jousting is. When a knight gets hit squarely in a duel, the impact is comparable to hitting a brick wall in a car going 60 km per hour! No wonder their armor is as heavy as it looks. When I picked up a piece of armor to help the lady carry it back to their trailer, I was surprised at the weight of it! The jousting ended with one knight getting knocked off his horse, badly denting his helmet when he hit something on landing, and the victor being declared.
It was a great event to watch and we took over 250 pictures. André's camera is ideal for this kind of photography. It lets one choose to shoot several pictures in a row by pressing the shutter button just once. This way you always get at least one picture which is 100% focused or even a whole series of shots showing the progression of an event. We have put such a series into this blog not only to show you this great feature of the camera but even more to give you a little impression of the jousting.
We will stay here at Knowlton Ridge Equestrian Center for 10 more days before hitting the road again. The plan now is to head west and then decide whether to go north (Yukon / Alaska) or south (northwestern US national parks) once we reach Calgary which will be just around the time of the famous Calgary Stampede. We will try to post more blogs along the way now that we are about to cover more roads and adventures again so come back and check out what's happening with us.