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MAY 15-18, 2017

Join expert geoscientist Daryl Cowell and Anishnabe storyteller and poet, Lenore Keeshig, to explore the many geological wonders and historical perspectives of the Niagara Escarpment UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve on the Bruce Peninsula.

This is a 3.5 day, fully inclusive, guided experience that will delight you with exciting geological discoveries, intriguing Native history and some tantalizing culinary surprises! You will receive exclusive access to seldom visited geological sites and one-on-one walks and talks with experts in their field.

Evening programming will immerse you in local Native history through traditional storytelling and engaging conversation. Relax in the company of fellow participants and our expert guides while you learn the stories of First Nations people and how the 'Giant Rib' has helped to shape their history. 



While hiking along the Niagara Escarpment, learn from an expert how geological history has carved the rugged landscape of this UNESCO biosphere reserve on the Bruce Peninsula and the greater arc of the ancient Michigan Basin. You will explore numerous and sometimes hidden geological features such as glacial potholes, underground cave systems, disappearing streams, sink holes and sea stacks.

Through storytelling and guided hikes you will discover how Anishnabe First Nations history reflects the dynamic and rugged geography of the landscape.

Sample a variety of culinary treats harvested from our campground's surrounding forest and enjoy a unique meal prepared using ancient cooking techniques.

Our small group size for this event allows participants to interact one-on-one with our expert guides, as well as share your stories and experiences with the group.


DATES: May 15-18, 2017

COST: From $495 per person all inclusive, for full-serviced RV camping accommodations. Cottage and Guest House accommodations are also available. See pricing options below. Discounted pricing for groups of 4 or more willing to share cottage accommodations.
WHERE:  Summer House Park in Miller Lake and daily excursions to various locations along the Niagara Escarpment, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
WHO CAN JOIN: Everyone is welcome. Please ensure that you are prepared to hike on moderate to sometimes difficult terrain. Come prepared with proper hiking footwear and clothing appropriate for varied weather.
REGISTRATION:  Please contact our registration office to inquire further. Ask for Darci


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Day 1- Mid-day check in at Summer House Park: afternoon geology geocaching activity; GPS units provided for this self-guided geology exploration of the grounds at Summer House Park; event orientation and evening story telling activity.

Day 2- Geoscience Hike with Daryl: Explore the varied geological wonders along the escarpment's edge near Dyer's Bay while we hike on the Bruce Trail to the ancient sea stack at Devil's Monument; return to Summer House Park for afternoon relaxing and supper; evening Native story telling and observations of the night sky, weather permitting.

Day 3- Guided hike with Lenore in the Bruce Peninsula National Park along the shores of Georgian Bay to a hidden sea cave; evening special meal and group campfire.

Day 4- Wrap-up and free time for completion of geocaching activity. Canoes and kayaks will be available free of charge to explore the serene shoreline and view water fowl on Miller Lake. 11 am check out from Summer House Park accommodations but you are free to spend the day relaxing and exploring the grounds.

Throughout the event: A geology-themed art station will be available for you to enjoy during your free time and evenings.

Daryl Cowell:


Daryl was born in Hamilton, Ontario where he attended McMaster University in the geology and physical geography program. He specialized in karst geomorphology - the study of the formation of caves and associated landforms.

He began to study the geology and karst of the Niagara Escarpment and the Bruce Peninsula through his undergraduate and Masters’ research and subsequently has undertaken numerous karst and other geomorphological studies along the escarpment. In 1993/94 he undertook an extensive geomorphological study of the northern Bruce Peninsula and offshore islands for Parks Canada. This work included both underwater and surface landform studies in Fathom Five National Marine Park as well as all the islands between Tobermory and Manitoulin; Bruce Peninsula National Park; and the Cabot Head area.

Daryl has also published numerous scientific papers about the Bruce in the fields of karst geomorphology, water quality, and subglacial meltwater processes and is a co-author of a book on the Geology and Landforms of Grey and Bruce Counties produced by the Owen Sound Field Naturalists. More recently he was co-author of a paper on glacial Lake Algonquin shorelines in the Cabot Head area, published in the Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences.

Daryl previously worked for Environment Canada on several projects including the development of ecological land classification techniques and methods in the Hudson Bay Lowland, terrestrial impacts and effects related to acid rain in eastern Canada, and the Great Lakes Toxic Chemicals Program. Since 1989 he has worked as a geoscience consultant, co-founding two environmental consulting companies and now working independently from his home near Tobermory. His work experience covers virtually all of Ontario as well as northern and central Manitoba, northern Alberta, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Internationally he has worked in Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, Peru, Uruguay, Romania, and Nigeria. He has also given numerous guided walks, presentations, and courses within the local area including for the Bruce County Museum, Peninsula Section of the Bruce Trail Conservancy, Ontario Naturalists, Saugeen Field Naturalists, Owen Sound Field Naturalists, Huron Fringe Festival, and Parks Canada.

Lenore Keeshig:


Lenore Keeshig is a traditional storyteller, poet and author from the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation at Neyaashiinigmiing on the Saugeen (Bruce) Peninsula. She currently works as a naturalist, providing education programs about the natural and cultural history of the Saugeen/Bruce Peninsula and the Great Lakes. Lenore’s poetry has appeared in a number of anthologies. Lenore shares the 1993 Living the Dream Book Award with her daughter Polly (illustrator) for their book Bird Talk, and a 1987 Author's Award with her husband David McLaren. Her long awaited debut collection of poems (Running on the March Wind) was published last year (2015) by Quattro Books.


Pricing for this excursion includes expert guided daytime and evening programming and exclusive access to local hidden gems, all meals (2 lunch, 2 dinner, 3 breakfast and snacks), free use of canoe and kayaks, additional geocaching and art activities accommodations and access to park amenities.

There are a number of accommodation options available during your stay with us. Package pricing reflects the style of accommodation and number of participants sharing space.

Adventure Camping Option: If you own your own RV, you will enjoy the serenity of our wooded campground on one of our fully serviced RV campsites.    

$495 + HST per person for full package

Guest House Geologist Option: If you prefer a more traditional bed and breakfast accommodation, we have three private rooms in our main lodge. Each room has a private bath, and either single or double beds. Convene with fellow guests in our cozy common lounge area. Rooms are a short walk downstairs to our dining room.

$600 + HST per person for full package (rate based on double occupancy)

Lakefront Cottage Option: Our beautiful and cozy housekeeping cottages are situated along the shores of Miller Lake. Each two-bedroom cottage has two or three-piece bathroom, kitchen, gas fireplace, outside deck and amazing views of Miller Lake.

$650 + HST per person for full package - 2-bedroom cottage (rate based on double occupancy)
$100 discount per person for four people sharing a two-bedroom cottage.

Other cottage sizes and prices are available. Please check with your host for more details.

Commuter Option:  For those who have their own accommodations in the area. Join the group for all activities and meals. All meals are included in our communter option as we feel strongly that breaking bread together is an important aspect of this experience.

$475 + HST per person. Only a few spaces available for commuter option.


Pricing does not include gratuities for our kitchen team.

The daily activities will involve moderate to sometimes difficult hiking along rugged terrain. Sturdy hiking boots and clothing for varied weather conditions is required.

Breakfast and evening meals will be served at Summer House Park. Packed lunches and snacks will be provided for picnic lunch during our hiking adventures.


INSPIRATION - poetry by Lenore Keeshig (written after a day of tour planning at Devil's Monument)

Devil’s Monument

This ancient one came
into being during the
last great flood –
its rocky connection to
the scarp weakened.
Time over time
rock flakes –
rock chunks
tumble and
roll down,
dust onto dust,
Akandoowinini* –
the old sentinel
in isolated
to watch over the
mysterious green blue
Sweetwater Sea, telling of times gone by.

*The Ojibwe word for guard, watcher, sentinel. Its literal translation is “Bone man.”


This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - Email us your name and contact information and we will contact you to arrange your booking.

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