PACT was canoe-dancing between Minnesota and Ontario, along the boundary waters on the edge of Quetico Provincial Park. They were excited to get into canoe tripping country- real portaging, real campsites, canoeists, pictographs and wild blueberries. But before they could get there, two portages stood in their way. As they paddled towards the first portage, a set of railway tracks rose out of the water.
The signs said; Loon Falls Portage. Portage Hours: Daily. All Dogs Must Be Leashed. Current Portage Rates: Round Trip $40.00 One Way $20.00. And underneath all that signage, there was the Bat-phone. If you pick up the phone between certain times…daily, a man might answer. He sits in a hut atop the summit of the portage, looking down on Loon Lake to the east. PACT requested a one-way ticket from the deep voice on the other end of the line and soon out in the distance the Bat-Trolley rolled over the hill and entered the water in front of the canoe. The boat was tied securely to the trolley and one more phone call was made. “It’s ready sir.”
The PACT crew ran along side the tracks, taking pictures and giggling like idiots as the canoe was towed on the electric pulley along the railroad tracks. After the boat was untied from the trolley and tied securely to the dock, PACT scrounged through their day packs to find one ten, one five, a twoonie and three loonies and walked back atop the hill to the little hut.
Everyone was excited to meet Batman. The Paddle Across Canada Tour is a non-for profit charity, crewed by six people without jobs, so the crew was hoping that with a little sweet-talking, Batman would wave the twenty dollar fee. ($20.00/6 crew members=$3.33 each, saved to be put towards student loan payments)
Batman, although seemingly positive about the potential of “outdoor education”, said he could not support our cause due to his passion and commitment towards education indoors.
PACT happily paid.
It was time to leave, but Batman stopped PACT at the door.
“Just one more thing….”
The PACT crew got back into the canoe with prizes! One Bat-soda and one Bat-bar each! For free….or at the cost of twenty dollars!!
Thank you Batman.