THE STONE BEAR OF LAKE TEMISKAMING
The Algonquin people tell of a legend from long ago. The legend is of a troubled bear that angered the Spirits with its aggressive behavior. The villagers had to warn their young time and time again to avoid the beach, where the angry bear stalked. On more than one occasion, the bear was said to have chased the people of the village from the beach into the cool spring waters of Lake Temiskaming (Temiskaming is the Algonquin word for deep waters). The Spirits warned the bear that he must stop tormenting the villagers and leave the beach for good, but the bear did not listen and did not leave! It is said that the Spirits were angered by the bear’s disobedience and decided that the bear would in fact stay on the beach that he had commandeered and serve as a warning to all. The crash of thunder was heard for miles around and the lightning that struck was so bright that many elders complained of burning eyes. Today if you go exploring the northern end of Lake Temiskaming you can still find the Bear right there where he had roamed so many years ago, but the bear roams no more. The Spirits turned the bear to stone and placed him in a large rock as a warning to all who would not heed the Spirits advice to live in harmony with all creatures. So, next time you hear that thunder clap, ask yourself, am I living in harmony with nature?