Today I took a stroll on the beach just down the street from my house. I was really surprised to see how the beach has changed this year. One of the things I like to tell visitors is that they shouldn't assume that what they remember from a few years ago will apply today. Wasaga Beach is like a living, breathing entity. It changes - drastically, almost every year. I have been shocked some years to see how vastly different the beach can look from one year to the next.
There have been seasons when I have had to navigate a small path because the water had overtaken the beach sand almost to the edge of the property lines of the private homes and cottages. Other years I have seen Beach Six overwhelmed with beach grass and rocks. I don't mind because with a pair of beach shoes, the lake bottom turns into sand if you travel just 20 feet from shore.
This year the beach is gorgeous. It is the best it has been in over 10 years. The grass is gone. The sand is dry almost to water's edge. The rocks.... where are the rocks? They seem to have moved eastward, and it's private. It had to be 30 degrees celcius today and not a single soul was on the beach! A couple of nesting ducks were startled by the sound of our footsteps and they flew a hundred feet out into the water. It's beautiful. Serene. I test the water with my feet and it's tepid, warm even. I walk out perhaps 50 feet to cooler water but it's still warm enough to swim. It's only May 31! I can't remember the last time it was like this so early in the season. I do hope that this is a sign of things to come. Wasaga Beach has been suffering. Poor weather and bad press has hurt my beloved town. We need tourists and it doesn't take much to make them go away. Nobody knows this better than the people who live here.
For those who prefer a quieter vacation, this area is wonderful. Shore Lane; my favourite street in Wasaga Beach is alive with people walking with children or their dogs. There is always someone roller blading, biking or jogging. Everyone says "hello" as they pass. There are many private cottages for rent in this area as well as a handful of motels or cottage courts. When I bought my house in this area it was November so I really didn't know what our first summer would be like. I feel truly lucky that I ended up here because this area is free of some of the problems that plague other parts of Wasaga Beach. It's easy to get in and out and I've never been gridlocked. When things are so busy in the main beach areas, I can head west to Collingwood, or south to Toronto. Once in a while I can sit on my porch and watch the long weekend day trippers - in a dreadful deadlock, trying to get downtown. When I see these poor people struggling to get in or out of this vacation town, I realize that it's not a bad life in my little chalet near the beach.
It is about an equal distance to get to Beach One as it is to get to Collingwood from here which gives me more options than most. I have 2 wal-marts to choose from, double the commercial options for shopping. Ditto with restaurants and night life. And, if you enjoy exploring the small communities of Ontario, Stayner, and Creemore are only 10-20 minutes. There are antiques, farmer's markets, music, festivals and so much more going on in this area. When you take into account the surrounding towns that are a comfortable drive from the west end of Wasaga Beach, it is a four season resort. It is a golfer's and fisherman's paradise in Spring and Fall. Sportsmen love to kitesurf, windsurf, cross country or download ski, snowshoe.. on our beach or at Blue Mountain. And if you are an avid skier, you can get to the Mountain in just 20 minutes. You could literally rent a cottage in the off season here for the entire winter ski season for less than a couple of weeks at Blue Mountain. I've often wondered why I don't see more roof racks with ski equipment driving past my house.
My ode to Beach 6 area comes from the heart. I lucked out as they say. Some days, like today I sit on my porch swing and wonder how I got so lucky?
Darlene Watters is the author, editor and publisher of Day At The Beach. She also operates the wasaga.com web site. Views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author alone, and do not represent the official positions of any organization or company who advertises on this website.
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