Airplanes on skis?

If you’ve been to Parry Sound before, you’ve more than likely seen the floatplanes that take off from Georgian Bay Airways base located across the road from 40 Bay Street Bed & Breakfast. Many of my guests take advantage of their Fly & Dine to Henry’s – a world famous fish restaurant only accessible by air or boat on San Souci Island.

Normally, we don’t see the planes from November until April – but 2014 is different! One of their planes has been equipped with skis – to enable it to land on ice in the winter. I spoke with owner Keith Saulnier, to learn more about this new opportunity.

GBA on skis

Georgian Bay Airways stores their planes at the local airport over the winter. Once they arrive at the airport in the fall, the floats are taken off, and the planes are put on wheels. The skis are then installed above the wheels. The airplane takes off on wheels, and once it is airborne, the skis are hydraulically dropped down over the wheels. He says that it is not a lot different flying planes with skis than with the floats they use in the summer. What is different is the noise you hear when the plane lands on the fluffy snow topping Georgian Bay's ice – he describes it like the noise you here when you go down-hill skiing or snowboarding…a big shushhhhhh!

The plane will be used primarily to help the Ministry of Natural Resources with things like moose counts, monitoring ice fishing, etc. However, it is also available for charters, training for others that would like to be able to fly on skis and offering rides at various winter festivals.

So, if you happen to be at one of those winter festivals, and somebody says “Georgian Bay Airways is here giving tours” you aren’t hearing things!


 

Did you promise to take better care of yourself this year?

Can you believe it’s been almost a month since you made your New Year’s Resolution? So, how’s it going? Are you really taking better care of yourself - and dealing with the stress? Making more time for family and friends? Have you tried something new?

Believe it or not, staying at 40 Bay Street Bed & Breakfast can help you accomplish at least one – if not more of those resolutions.

10 Tips to help you stay warm outdoors this winter

With so many things to do in the winter in Parry Sound, it is important to be prepared for the weather. 

In addition to peeking outside the door, there are a number of additional things to take into account when trying to determine how warmly you should dress before venturing outside. When exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to lose heat faster than it can be produced. However, there are ways to make sure that you remain safe and warm, so that you can enjoy your time outdoors!

Parry Sound's most popular tour

If you haven't already downloaded your copy of our Parry Sound Travel Guide here's just one of the many itineraries the guide contains.  If you only have a day, and want to see as much as possible, here's "The Parry Sound Overview Tour".

In order to accomplish everything outlined in this tour, it is important to plan to arrive in Parry Sound prior to noon and drive directly to the Island Queen boat cruise location to pick up your tickets for the three hour afternoon cruise that leaves at 1:00 p.m. This is the most popular cruise as it takes you out into Georgian Bay, so you have some understanding of the incredible geological formations found, and the vastness of the 30,000 islands, which form the largest fresh water archipelago.