There is a new option to see the leaves this fall in Huntsville. A cruise on the newly minted Tom Thomson.

An offshoot of the Lady Muskoka Cruise lines, the first of three new boats was just delivered from Ottawa last month. The 80 passenger glass-covered boats will be doing a limited run from the Huntsville Dock over the next ten days taking passengers on Fairy Lake, around Antler Island and back to the town dock.

Part of the journey of the Tom Thomson required trucking up highway 11. (Supplied Photo)

It has been quite a journey to get these unique boats to Muskoka, including 12 days on the Rideau Canal system before transferring to a 135 foot long specialized tractor-trailer unit to handle the 58-foot long vessel.

“That one was $60,000 in transport costs to get here,” says owner Stephen Wyllie.

While it might seem to be a fairly simple thing to put a boat in the water and start taking people out, there is a lot that goes into a cruise. “You have to establish the narration, the tour, there is just a lot of things to do to get ready,” he says.

The name of the first vessel offers a historical and geographic tie-in to the area. Tom Thomson was an artist, considered an early member of the Group of Seven, before his untimely death in 1917.

Wyllie says getting the name approved required some regulatory hurdles to be cleared. “We had to get permission from a registrar to register the name,” explains Wyllie.

Next season the boat will feature dining and be based out of Deerhurst Resort, with two more boats coming to work out of Huntsville and Lake Rosseau. Cruises will be leaving weekends on the hour starting at 11:00am with a typical trip going about 45 minutes.