Backyard Adventures – November 2015

Meech Lake Gatineau Park Ottawa

Unfortunately, I don’t travel full time. It’s just not something I can do—at least not right now and maybe never. Who knows. So, though I’ve got a few trips planned, the nearest one is still, like, three months away. In the meantime, I gotta keep my wanderlust in check with Backyard Adventures, short weekend and day-long jaunts that don’t necessarily take me far from home, but allow me to explore and discover something new about my own backyard.

November’s almost done and winter’s on its way, so I decided to head from Montreal, where I currently live, to Ottawa, where I’m originally from, to visit with my folks and scratch a few local experiences off my list with a couple Backyard Adventures.

While there, I’ll be staying at the Ottawa Jail Hostel. It’s an actual former prison that has been converted into a hostel. For $40 you can stay in an authentic jail cell. And, of course, given that it was the site of executions and still has a working gallows, the place is supposedly haunted. I’ve wanted to spend a night there for some time but, that’s the way it goes, right: you live there or around there so you figure, why would I do that, why would I stay at a hostel in my own hometown?

Because it’s a former prison filled with crime ghosts, that’s why!

So those’re my accommodation plans. I’ll also visit and take photos of some of my favorite bars and restaurants in Ottawa’s Byward Market for a piece on . . . uh, my favorite bars and restaurants in Ottawa’s Byward Market.

And, lastly, I’ll be hiking through Gatineau Park, just outside of Ottawa, to visit the Carbide Willson ruins, the former phosphate mill of some local eccentric bent on discovering a method for turning lead into gold or stone into butter or some such nonsense. I’ll look it up later. Promise. But ruins! Yay!

So, yeah, those’re my weekend plans and plans for staving off the stir-craziness for another few weeks or so.

You got a trick for tempering your own wanderlust? Got a favorite Backyard Adventure in your area? Lemme know!