Swimming Upstream

Watching salmon migrate upstream was unexpectedly calming and relatable.

The hubby, T and I spent this sunny but chilly Sunday exploring Port Hope, located an hour drive from home.

This scenic town served as the filming location for the recent two-movie adaptation of Stephen King’s novel It.

The town has a historic charm with its old but well-maintained and beautiful homes.

We walked around downtown, which I seem to feel was featured in the aforementioned movie.

The highlight of our visit was Ganaraska River Dam, where you can spot salmon and trout migrating upstream between August to early October.

We thought we had missed the annual migration but we were blessed with plenty of sightings.

T quickly claimed his own viewing spot.

It was not hard to imagine that T sees a kindred spirit in these determined energetic fish.

Salmon are said to live 3-5 years. Near the end of their lives, they migrate upstream back towards the river bed where they were born.

How they are able to remember and find their birthing spot is surely another sign of nature’s magic.

Once they spawn their eggs they die.

As I watched these fish make the tiring swim and jump upwards, I too found a kindred spirit.

I’m the fish and that unrelenting gushing water is our T.

As I was thinking about this, a salmon jumped out of the water, smacked onto a concrete wall and fell back where he had started from.

Yup, definitely a kindred spirit.

In case you were wondering, we did not encounter the demonic clown Pennywise from the movie It. I had a red balloon ready too in the hopes of getting a few hours off from parenting.

Looking for Pennywise the clown from It.

However, on the drive back home, we passed by this awesome house that was clearly ready for Halloween.

It brought a huge smile to T’s face and in turn, ours too.

23 thoughts on “Swimming Upstream

  1. That looks like fun. I took a group of disabled people to Brighton two years back. We walked on the crowded beach, ordered up ice creams and had a nice picnic tea. Then we visited the city pier and the amusing arcade before doing a couple of rides. It was fun. Next up a zoo trip or a museum outing. Or a pub meal.

  2. Thank you for a heart warming , exciting adventure and discover at Port Hope and Ganaraska River Dam. The Salmon Cycle of Life is truly a marvel and awe of Nature and Creation. It’s kinda humbling as well as inspiring. I wish our lives can be as simple and predictable like the Salmon. Salmon can trace back where they began and where to end, People’s lifespan is fused with surprises, turns, joys and craziness. The community looks like something frozen beautifully in time. The preservation of Architecture and Nature are astonishing, like the Dam where Salmons can still go back home to finish their purpose, a rare find as compared to many urbanized areas of the World.

    1. Thank you! I agree with you how nature is purely magical. I was watching a series of trees swaying the other day. The branches remind me of what our lungs look like with the different capillaries, etc. No coincidence that trees supply the oxygen that fill our lungs. Every design in nature works together in tandem.

      And yes, very lucky Port Hope is just around the corner. Like you are discovering with your local tourism, I’ve been doing the same in my part of the world. A blessing of this pandemic!

      1. You are blessed my friend to live so close to Nature at its purest and most beautiful. Canada is one of the few Frontiers where Nature is well preserve and protected. So admirable.

      2. You’ll have to explore Canada one day. Banff and Lake Louise in Alberta are a close flight from where your family is. I highly recommend it. You’ll be blown away by its beauty. 🙏👍

  3. How neat to watch the salmons migrate. You managed to get some great captures of them jumping upstream. Looks like T found himself a great viewing spot. I couldn’t help but laugh at that picture of him on the ground trying to get a better look at them. I haven’t been to Port Hope, but I’ll have to add this on my list of places to visit as it looks quite charming.

    1. He had quite a great viewing spot and yes, I was quite amused as well at how he made him quite comfortable on it. Port Hope is definitely worth a visit! 👍

    1. Thank you, LaDonna! It was. We’re trying to do more of these experiential learning activities with him rather than the “worksheets” on weekends. Less meltdowns for everyone involved. 😆 Hope you are doing well!

  4. Ha, ha, ha – love the analogy. It reminds me of a meditation I once read that talked about how salmon swim upstream. They swim directly towards where the water flows fast, turn towards the force so that it impacts them on their bellies and then it propels them out and up. I’m not doing it justice – but it was a great metaphor for facing what is coming at us and using it to move us forward.

    Glad you had such a fun day!

    1. Is it bad to say that the first thing I thought after I read your comment was that no wonder the salmon belly tastes so good? It’s so tenderized from all that blunt force. 😆 But jokes aside, that is a wonderful fact to know. And definitely a good analogy of using the pressure we face to propel us forward. I really like that. Thanks for sharing, Wynne!

  5. So many good films have Canadian downtown/village settings – especially the ones on TV.

    And so many people do bring their children to the salmon sightings.

    I wonder if climate change has pushed the salmon migration back by a few weeks?

    You could both identify with the fish and from different perspectives and different reasons.

    Living always calls the living. [like deep calls deep].

    Do you know about these fish stages:




    smolt ?

    1. Thanks. We’re very fortunate lots of interesting Tv and film productions take place in our part of the world. Always fascinating to see them on the screen.

      I’m not overly familiar with fish spawning cycles to be honest, but it was nice to see the salmon migration up close on person!

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