June 20, 2013 / Travel
Lake Superior Circle Tour / Day 4
We woke up dry and warm and the sun was shining! Yay! I sat in the room for a few moments with the window open, listening to the birds singing and the waves crashing on the shore. We began the day by walking along the rocky Lake Superior shore, just outside of the Lodge to look for rocks. I could seriously do this all day! Every rock is so unique, and before I knew it, my pockets were sagging down with their weight and Tim said that we better get going. *Sigh* He’s right, we have lots of things to see.
We crossed the border without a problem. Well, the Border Patrol woman did warn me that if I continued to pronounced Nolalu like No-la-lu instead of Naw-law-lu, I would be laughed out of town. Warning taken! The landscape changed pretty drastically, we were away from the lake and it was much more open.
We stopped for lunch at a little restaurant called The Metropolitan Moose before heading to Kakabeka Falls and a small antique shop in Nolalu.
I think these items were the scariest part of our trip!
We stayed the night at the most incredible place! It is the Nolalu Eco Center and Hurbert and Jacomyn are the lovely couple that run it. They immigrated to Canada from Holland several years ago and in 2006 they began building their straw bale house. They live in the house as well as offer it as a B&B and a learning center for students. They live completely off the grid, creating their own energy from the sun and the wind. They are even able to sell some of the energy that they create to the Canadian government! Their house is insulated with straw, which keeps it cool in the summer (they don’t use ac) and warm in the winter. When they showed us their power generator I was blown away! They were able to see how much energy they make in a day as well the energy that they are using, while they are using it. They also have a composting toilet. Yes, you heard me right, a composting toilet. I’m sure you’re thinking, ew gross, what the heck! But it’s actually not as bad as it sounds. It never smelled bad, you don’t use any water, just a peat and sawdust mixture (so think of all the water that you are saving) and every few days they have a crank on the bottom of the toilet to mix things up. Then they use this for compost for their land. They could probably explain it better. I would definitely recommend this place if you are looking for an Eco experience or if you just want to stay somewhere different. We also enjoyed talking to Hubert and Jacomyn about their love of art and design. Check out their website for photos of how they built their house and more information.
Below is the Truth Window, I think it’s called. Every straw bale house must have one of these to prove that they are indeed built with straw.
For dinner, we drove to Silver Mountain Station, (at the suggestion of Hubert & Jacomyn) a little restaurant that used to be a train station, in the middle of nowhere. It was built in 1890 and ran until 1938. It is the last standing rail station of the historic PeeDee railway line. Another piece of history fighting to stay alive! Our host and chef, Shelly was great and filled us in on some of the history of the place. Check out this website to read more.
How lovely! Have you ever tried to trade lodging for photos? One of my friends contacts places she is traveling to and offers to take photos in exchange for lodging or discounted lodging. Worth a shot sometime!