One of the first items on our winter bucket list this year was to go Snowshoeing and Caving. We wanted to experience adventure in the great Canadian outdoors so we headed to the Southern Georgian Bay, known as one of the province’s most beautiful destinations. We teamed up with Free Spirit Tours, who specialize in caving, paddling, rock climbing, sea kayaking and snowshoeing. Their expert guides outfit you and teach you the skills you need to take on any of the activities with confidence.
Our tour began at 9:30 am at the Blue Mountain Market Village where we were picked up Free Spirit Tour’s shuttle. After a short 20 minute ride, we arrived at Metcalfe’s Rock in Kolapore Uplands, a natural recreation area, where we began our snowshoe adventure. Hiking through the forest wilderness was enchanting. There was beauty all around us! We trekked through a white winter wonderland across bridges, over rivers and up hills. Eventually we made our way towards the caves where we knew we’d be in for a real treat.
Jim and Dwayne, our guides, introduced us to Niagara Escarpment and taught us a little about the caves and it’s surrounding ecosystem. These instructors knew a great deal of information about the history of the area which dates back to 500 million years ago.
At first, I was intimidated by the caves. I was unsure how I would squeeze my whole body through small crevices or through cramped areas. After a few seconds of confusion I gave it a try with some assistance from the instructors. Within minutes I was climbing and crawling all over the place. The caves were to my surprise very comfortable; the atmosphere and temperature was pleasantly calming.
It’s good to know ahead of time that there are a lot of tight spaces within the caves which take a few minutes getting used to. We adjusted fairly quickly and were able to explore all the cool features within the caves with no worries. Thankfully we had headlamps attached to our helmets which provided an extremely good amount of light for us to lead the way.
If I needed help figuring how to push my body between some rocks the instructors helped me step-by-step explaining where to put my hand or foot. If it wasn’t for their motivation I don’t know what I would have done. I felt so accomplished at the end like I just conquered another whole world.
We finished with some delicious homemade Apple Cider and snowshoed back out. Overall, the tour lasted over three hours leaving us exhausted but very satisfied. It’s a very physical activity as it really got our blood pumping! In the end, it was an amazing experience as it challenged ourselves to move our bodies in different ways to get through the caves. I recommend packing proper waterproof gloves and boots with good traction since I lacked in this department. The tour is great for all ages, in fact, there was a little boy who beat me into every cave. I’ll have to try again soon to get up to his level!
Thanks to Free Spirit Tours for welcoming My One Big Planet as a guest.