Ontario, Canada Photos – Spring 2009 Emerging – Haliburton Highlands, Southern, Central Ontario

Ξ March 19th, 2009 | → 0 Comments | ∇ business, Canada, cottage country, Haliburton Highlands, marine/marina, Ontario, Photography, Travel/Vacation, webcam, winter |

Lake Muscoka, Gravenhurst, Ontario March 19, 2009

Lake Muscoka, Gravenhurst, Ontario - March 19, 2009

Yesterday, whilst we were taking our dog Raven for her nightly walk, my husband remarked that “the snow is melting off the docks on Lake Muscoka.” He’d been looking at the webcam shot available on the Internet as he made the assessment. Since “the melt,” as I’m calling it seems to be underway (I’m never certain that there is not going to be another freeze of any duration–is anyone?) I thought it best to see what I could pull up on the Ontario webcams.
As much as I hate sounding curmudgeonly there remains only a couple of public webcams in the entire province of Ontario that give access to a nice scene. Otherwise webcams , especially those that are sponsored by business’s like oh say, the Toronto webcam by CBC television are absolutely unremarkable. The shot CBC shows could be of “any city” and it’s any city of not great beauty. Conversely, a second shot of Toronto Island sponsored by The Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto, though a long shot, is in focus and gives a wonderful view of the magnificent vista.

Toronto Island - March 19, 2009

Toronto Island - March 19, 2009

It still flabbergasts me that a province like Ontario that depends so on income from tourism does not take advantage of the ever-burgeoning use of the Internet and strategically install tourism-inducing webcams in some of Ontario’s most gorgeous areas. I’m sure if the province put a bit of money into this and found some competent people to periodically make sure that the camera was pointed in the right direction, in focus, not obscured by dirt, debris, etc. that the pay-off over time would more than outweigh the initial cost of installing the cameras and the recurring cost of bandwidth that allows the showcasing of the picture pretty Ontario webcam shots.

If I sound discouraged, I am, mostly because it’s such a wasted opportunity for the province and frankly, that sharp minds in Ontario haven’t already thought to do this when so many residents have been industrious enough to do so, despite the fact that they are almost always selling something. I don’t mind adverts but in the case of Haliburton’s webcam shot “sponsored by Halcom Communications,” one must go to their site, which many of us are reluctant to do as doing so as a practice makes one vulnerable to cookies attached to one’s browser. I’ve actually written to Halcom asking it they could adjust/clean the lens of their webcam–got no reply. So they get free advertising and they give us next to nothing in return.

Port Carling, Kincardine Harbour, Lake Erie

Kincardine Harbour, Lake Erie

Indian River, Port Carling, Ontario - March 19, 2009

Indian River, Port Carling, Ontario - March 19, 2009

Lake Kawagama, Dorset, Courtesy Mountain Trout House

Lake Kawagama, Dorset, Courtesy Mountain Trout House


Lights Out! For Earth Hour 2009 on March 28!

Ξ March 18th, 2009 | → 0 Comments | ∇ Canada, events, family, government/politics, health/happiness, home, Photography, United States |

What can you do?

It is easy! From 8:30 – 9:30 local time turn off all lights and non-essential electrical appliances to support an increased awareness of environmental issues. See below for unique ways to mark Earth Hour 2009 with friends and family.

10 Ways to Mark Earth Hour

  • Attend local Earth Hour events or organize one.
  • Go outside and look at the stars.
  • Find a great viewing spot to see your town or city go dark at 8:30 p.m.
  • Take pictures and send them to Your Weather.
  • Go for a lantern walk through a park.
  • Patronize local restaurants and businesses taking part in Earth Hour.
  • Gather your family or friends for a candle-lit dinner.
  • Meet your neighbours at a street or block party.
  • Have an acoustic music jam.
  • Talk to your children about how much electricity your family uses. Brainstorm ways to reduce it.

Source: WWF-Canada
From the official video source: Official Earth Hour 2009 video. Earth Hour is on March 28th, 2009 at 8:30pm. More at http://www.earthhour.org

Support Earth Hour by making your own video and adding it to our Earth Hour Global group here:

Earth Hour images can be downloaded and shared from our flickr photostream, including Shepard Fairey Vote Earth artwork: http://www.flickr.com/photos/earthhour_global/


Smart Home: Home in 90 Seconds/Becoming Edvard Munch

Ξ March 17th, 2009 | → 0 Comments | ∇ maplelakeontario.com |

“The construction and assembly of the modular Smart Home took about four months (give or take). Here’s your chance to watch it come together in less than 90 seconds!”

Museum of Science And Industry

Story source: Huff Post

Visitors will again be able to stroll through the Museum of Science and Industry’s environmentally friendly home exhibit after a brief closure and renovation.

Museum officials say the Smart Home exhibit that closed Jan. 4 reopens Thursday. The home is on museum grounds and originally opened in May 2008. Since then, more than 100,000 people toured the exhibit, which runs through Jan. 3.

The goal of the Chicago exhibit is to show visitors that saving energy and conserving resources are within reach of everyone. The redesign updates the 2,500-square-foot home with the latest in green technology, including an eco-friendly baby nursery and a garage workshop.

Just in time for spring break!

But I wanted to go to the Art Institute and it’s my chance to pick. Dilemma.

This uber green home looks very interesting and educational and practical but I’m in the  mood for aesthetics.

Houston we have a problem. This: Becoming Edvard Munch.

It has pieces such as this one on loan:

"Melancholy" 1894-96 - Edvard Munch

"Melancholy" 1894-96 - Edvard Munch

Oi. I have to see this exhibition. Why live near a city that has wonderful exhibitions come through and not go see them? Exactly.



Spring Arrives in Southern Ontario – Webcam Photos, Long Term Weather Forecast UPDATE

Ξ March 16th, 2009 | → 0 Comments | ∇ cottage country, Haliburton Highlands, Ontario, Photography, spring, weather, webcam, winter |

As much as I wish I could be in Ontario to witness winter turning into spring, the best I can do for now–and in truth it is a pretty fun endeavour, is to visit various areas  of southern/south central/central Ontario and through the magic of live webcam imagery record the changes. I do tend to go to specific spots regularly either because I find them so appealing or the  spots I’d like to go to have the craziest webcam setups ever. Strangely, quite a few of the odd webcam setups –meaning the picture is a blurred or non-existent altogether are sponsored by businesses. (People who put up outdoor webcams for pleasure seem to care about getting it right.) Halcom Communication in Haliburton, Ontario: I’m talking to you. You’ve had the most craptastic picture of Haliburton up for years now–and one can only get to it after wading through your self-promotion. Now I’m all for self-promotion but when there is a crummy, fuzzy, CROOKED webcam shot as a reward? Um, no. Now onto my stable of regulars after a quick look at the 14-day forecast for south central Ontario. It is indeed changing–and if you like warm and dry–for the better.

14-day Weather Trend, Haliburton Highlands

14-day Weather Trend, Haliburton Highlands

Out of the next two weeks, 10 of 14 days are forecasted to have normal or above-normal temperatures. Yay!

Barrie stills looks quite frosty 3.17.09

Barrie stills looks quite frosty 3.16.09

Downtown Chapleau looks positively inviting!

Downtown Chapleau looks positively inviting!

Lake Superior in Wawa

Lake Superior in Wawa

Lake Muscoka, Granvenhurst has a while to go before melt

Lake Muscoka, Gravenhurst has a while to go before melt

Kincardine: Penetangore River to Lake Huron: melting

Kincardine: Penetangore River to Lake Huron: melting

Lakefield - Reach Harbour. This may be the one I'm most looking foreward to watching as it transforms.

Lakefield - Reach Harbour. This may be the one I'm most looking foreward to watching as it transforms.


Weekend Weather – Haliburton Highlands, Maple Lake, Short and Long Term Weather Forecasts

Ξ March 13th, 2009 | → 0 Comments | ∇ Canada, cottage country, Haliburton Highlands, nature, Ontario, Photography, weather, webcam, winter |


Though Friday night’s clear skies bring with them the lowest temperature of the week, we can look forward to an extended thaw beginning Saturday afternoon which with have variable cloudiness, a high of 33°F, and 9 mph winds out of the southwest. Sunday, look for bright, sunny skies and a high of 44°F with lows dipping down to 19°F overnight.

Monday is expected to be mainly sunny again with a high of 44°F and overnight lows falling only to 23°F. On Tuesday, March 17, expect a mix of clouds with sunny breaks and the week’s “highest” high at 46°F with lows overnight yet again not at all severe at 24°F. Looking to Wednesday the warming trend will continue with a high of 44°F with a 60% chance of light rain. I believe that overnight Wednesday will be the first night in quite some time where the temperatures are forecasted to remain slightly above freezing at a low of 33°F. Thursday the 19th ushers in the first real drop in temperatures. Expect variable cloudiness, a high of only 28°F and a nighttime low of 19°F. For Friday, March 20 expect more variable cloudiness with a high of 30°F during the day and a nighttime low of 17°F. There is no precipitation in the forecast for either Thursday or Friday.


Here is the 14-day extended weather forecast:


Below are some webcam shots I took of various pretty spots by the water in south central Ontario. Depending on the spot you will notice degrees of ice melt. I’m assuming that the  upcoming 4-day thaw should enhance the thaw even further. Should be fun to follow.


There’s the tell-tale melting near the center of Head Lake in Haliburton.


But at Lake Muscoka in Gravenhurst it looks like winter still has a firm grip.


The ice-melt is very apparent in Kincardine where the harbour is quickly reverting to it’s liquid state.


The Silver Lake Resort still looks like it has a ways to go before an expanse of water is on the vista.


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