The Trip, Chapter 5 – Not Quite in the Footsteps of the Group of Seven

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In a stretch of four days, we will have motored well over 12 hours, crossing a broad swatch of Ontario, from the eastern border with Quebec to Lake Superior.

I like to think of myself as fairly mindful. As we drive through the province, it’s not difficult to compare driving here to our own province, Quebec. More particularly, the great state of Ontario’s highways. The difference, obviously, is in the materials used and the money spent (and maybe even the know-how, who knows?) Except for a little stretch after Thunder Bay, we rarely come across a single pothole or bump in the road. Once, driving from Sault-Ste.-Marie to our third stop at Lake Superior Provincial Park, we drive past a sign warning of bumps in the road due to some construction, but when we go over the “bumps” we can barely feel a thing. “This is a bump?” I think. In Quebec, this would have been considered the smoothest part of the highway…

What we do find in Ontario, more than any other place, is an enormous amount of roadwork sites, slowing us down considerably. The government has obviously decided to make the Trans-Canada Highway wider and smoother than it already is.

Also unique to Ontario roads are the proliferation of schoolmarmish signs regularly regaling drivers about their driving habits. Oh, leave us alone, will you?

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Once in Manitoba, we will come across some pretty lousy highway conditions, worse even than those found in Quebec, as hard as it is to believe.

So we’ll feel right at home…

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