Our marketing season during the winter, in Toronto and London was timed well-finishing just before covid struck. By the beginning of March, our season, 2020 pre-covid, had filled in very nicely and we were so excited to see a few names of guests who haven’t been with us for many years. Our July and August spots were all filled in with the other times looking great, in fact, maybe one of our best seasons. Then of course, we all know what happened. We are so thankful that we were able to open and have a season; many other tourism/ service based businesses didn’t open at all. After a very quiet but productive early spring and with little advance notice, our first guests arrived on June 11 from all over Ontario. Many shorter stays filled in the weeks. We delivered meals to the cottages but kept the Lodge dining room closed for the entire season. What a whirlwind of cleaning and paper work.
A big part of our service here at the Outpost is our personal touch we try so very hard to give every guest so having to distance and not be able to sit and visit in the dining room was terribly hard. Our guests who were visiting for the first time missed out on that closeness we pride ourselves on. A huge thank you to all who were able to visit this season, we really appreciate your support!! Another huge thank you to our American guests who are graciously waiting until next year when things are back closer to normal. A vaccine is coming!!
In January 2020, The New Fly Fisher TV show featuring the Outpost Lodge, was aired in its entirety. We were extremely pleased with how they captured early spring at the Outpost. Check it out on our website. The highlight of the spring, besides of course being able to open, was a visit from Karl Kalonka of Extreme Angler. He spent a full week here exploring the area and our lakes. The weather was wonderful and he caught a lot of fish, concentrating mainly on smallmouth. It was awesome to see drone footage of some of our favourite spots. He will be back spring 2021!! Jim considers him to be our new Outpost fishing expert; feel free to ask any fishing questions, especially on the latest tactics, lures and equipment at fishxtreme.com Make sure to mention the Outpost Lodge in your questions!
We had a nice summer! Everyone felt safe, really enjoying the quiet solitude, away from busy lives, something made even more special and important in these crazy times. It was wonderful to meet so many new people and share our beautiful area. Good news- Aubrey Falls is open! The fishing was good too- we found the time to go out ourselves! We caught lots of bass and walleye but not many pike. A few more pike caught and released might help.
The fall colours this year were just spectacular!! Our artists group had to miss this year, what a shame. Outpost guests took many photos and really enjoyed our crisp fall days for hiking too.
Christmas this year will be different for sure. Imagine having the Lodge decorated, with a giant Christmas tree with all the trimmings; turkey in the oven and lots of family getting warm in front of the fireplaces- an Outpost Christmas card. Not a fantasy- the Wageman family, previous owners of the Outpost, visited this summer and shared some stories of their time here especially their Christmas celebrations. We are going to ‘Stay The Blazes home!’, some good advice from the Canadian east coast, who have done a great job at battling covid.
Season 2021 comes with great uncertainty. Canadian sport shows are cancelled so our regular face to face marketing will not happen. Our internet presence and our past guests will fill this season. We hope that by spring, most everyone will be vaccinated allowing for safe vacations and the border to open. All deposits for 2020 will be held until they can be redeemed. In April, when we find out if the border will open, we will do our best to make sure you get the weeks you want. To our guests who joined us in 2020- if you would like to hold your cottage for 2021, please contact us so that we can save your space with a deposit. The Outpost will always be the best place to be during challenging times. Keep your lines tight and keep your stick on the ice!!!
May your days be merry, your heart be light, your holiday happy, your season bright!! Merry Christmas to all!!
God Bless, Jim, Ann, Jamie, Sean, Isabella and Bo.