Sunday, June 17, 2012


As I have mentioned, I've been avoiding longer walks and hikes due to the fact that deer flies and mosquitoes are thick right now, and are amongst my least favourite things.  Well, last evening, I'd had enough of staying indoors and decided to head out across the fields, to the river to find that elusive stream that I had spied in the spring. 

I set out in the field at a rather fast clip because I didn't have much time and the bugs were bad...or so I thought.  There was a steady flow of deer flies around my head - maybe 5 - 8 at the most.  Not a huge deal.  Totally manageable.  When I felt like leaving them behind, I broke into a faster run, brought up the breeze, and they were gone.  As soon as I stopped, they seemed to multiply, brought on by my activity and heavy breathing.  I like running, and I do it almost everyday. Just not, you know, in jeans and heavy hiking boots. 

Still, they weren't too bad.

On I went to the river.

Crossing was a bit of an issue, and I had to venture father upstream to find a narrow spot.  I crossed at the top of the falls with my shoes tied around my neck and my socks stuffed in my pocket.

Once across the deer flies found me again, and this time they had brought all their friends.  I was starting to get just a bit nervous about my situation.

I followed the dry creek bed up through the forest where the mosquitoes found me.  OH FANTASTIC.

I broke into a run again, pausing every so often and snapping all the photos I could, knowing that this would be the last I saw of this place until the fall.

I stumbled up the the upper field, snapped a few shots, down to the creek bed, raccoon print, oh yay, more forest, bugs, deeper pool, bugs, rocks, this must have been pretty in spring, bugs, bugs, no more thinking, just running.

Mosquitoes and deer flies are swarming now.  I'm back at the river ripping off my socks and shoes.  Forcing myself to slow down and calmly cross so that I don't slip and smash up on the rocks.  I felt like I was crossing blind.  I was in a BUG RAGE.

At this point, there was no more time for pictures, the camera was to be used a weapon only.

I ran through the thick blackberry canes, the spines ripping at my sweat heavy jeans.  I startled a white tailed deer.  No time to admire.  I kept running.

I came out of that field running as if Satan himself had risen from the depths and was chasing me across the sweeping grasses.  I hit the road and briefly considered laying down.

I was absolutely dripping with sweat.  Slick.  Disgusting.  Spent.

The jury is still out on whether this little adventure was worth the bug rage and copious amounts of cortisone I used when safely ensconced in my blissfully bug-free washroom.  I don't suppose I'll be returning to the scene of the crime anytime soon, but I do look forward to a more leisurely stroll come late August.

Bug rage!


  1. Many years ago when your Granddad and I were building cottages in the Minden area we would be there in April/May. We stayed in a trailer and would work out in the "bugs" for 8 to 10 hours straight. I am no stranger to the "bug rage" you encountered but we had no place to go. At the end of the day we would go back to the camp trailer, dirty and bleeding from the bites only to find 1000's of black flies INSIDE the only place we thought we could hide. Your Granddad and I once framed a complete 600 sq ft cottage in less than 48 hours working time and got the hell out of Minden for a few days. Even in the summer if you were very quiet you could hear the bush buzz from the masses of mosquitoes in there just waiting for you to get to close.

  2. Oh I hear ya. I HATE deer flies and mosquitoes, too. Bug season is NOT my favourite time of year!
    I loved hearing Steve's story, too. I grew up at a cottage just north of Minden (12 Mile Lake) and the bugs were often unbearable.