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PostPosted: February 8th, 2007, 11:19 am 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Lac Granet-Outaouais.

Anyone done this route? I have only the map section for part of it.

I am guessing that the folks at Canot Camping La Verendrye have the topo if the Guide map has not yet been made .

Any comparisons to Circuit 77 Hawkesbury Des Baies, or can you do a ten day combined trip?


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PostPosted: February 9th, 2007, 11:23 am 
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HI Kim,
I haven't but I think that both SteveBoal and SergeB did C73 in or around '05.
Also John S did some of it a while back - the southern part I believe.
Bad memory but the best I can remember.

If you get any info, would you pass it around as I thought about 73 before but not spent any time researching it.

When you thinking of going?

cheers Ted

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PostPosted: February 12th, 2007, 7:36 pm 
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I have done both "#73 Granet-Outaouais" and "#77 Hawkesbury-Des Baies" last September. I combined them for a great 10 day trip.

The topo maps are availables from the folks at Le Domaine but if you need them for planning purposes, I can easily scan what I've got from that last Septembre trip. That goes for you too Ted!

In general, I would say that #73 is not as nice as #77 but still a great trip. Since part of it is outside the park itself, you will see cabins along the Des Outaouais river. To me that was the least interresting part of the trip. Once you get off the river, the scenary gets a lot better. You get to cross small lake, ponds, larger lakes and more of the Des Outaouais river. There is the Chute Big also that is always nice to see!

I like the route and it is quite easy to paddle. The portages are all relatively easy. The longest one is just under 1 km, but on a gravel road. One thing I should mention though, most of the portages and campsite (if not all) are not marked with a sign or anything else between lake Granet and lake Lambert. They are easily found but could get confusing at times.

If you need more informations or have any questions, don't hesitate to ask me, I'd be happy to help.

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PostPosted: April 1st, 2007, 9:04 pm 
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Yes I've done the lower half of 73 beginning where the river crosses RT 44 to the west, going south to Lac Black and then counterclockwise to lac Gaotanaga and take out where the river crosses Rt 44 again to east.

It was in 1993, my very first trip to La Verendrye and my first extended wilderness trip.

I would love to do that route again.

Part of what I like most was the number of relatively small lakes. It felt nicely secluded. We traveled from our camp on Lac Poire to our next camp on the eastern end of Gaotanaga in one long day. Going west and northwest, with wind coming from the west and small lakes, it was safe to hoist a sail and catamaran the two canoes all the way to the west end of Gaotanaga. Of course we had to avoid running Chute Big. Fortunately though the water was low and we could pull/slide/line the two canoes, still attached together, down the stream to the east of the island where Chute Big is to the west.

I think that the island campsite we had on Gaotanaga is the second best I have ever had, The huge rock but vegetated peninsula on the island made for a great place to hang out.

Again because the water was law we were able to walk around the island on the shore. My buddy got a good 3 foot pike in the narrows between the island and the mainland.

What a nice trip that was. We did it the first week of June. No serious bugs but the weather had a lot of rain early on and then the threat of rain most of the rest of the trip. I learned to love camping in the rain on that trip too.


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PostPosted: August 7th, 2008, 12:16 pm 
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I think I did this route in 2006, although I did a different variation of the lower part than JohnS did. I started to write the notes below and the memories came flooding back, so I kept writing.

DAY 1: I began at Barker and only made it as far as a campsite on Baie Barker the first night because I had driven that day up from Montreal. The drive in from 117 on Route 38 took much longer than I expected. Much of the road was a rock road rather than a gravel road, with potato sized rocks.

DAY 2: I paddled north up Grand Lac Victoria, west into what is labeled Grand-Détour on topo map 31N11, and then north along an unlabeled river that leads into Riviere des Outaouais. While I was on Grand Lac Victoria I was paddling into strong northerly/northwesterly winds. It was a tiring fight and I obviously didn't have my Bell Wildfire trimmed right because it kept trying to weathercock. The river travel on this day was much more enjoyable. I made camp the second night just south of Lac Granet on the Riviere des Outaouais. It was a long tiring day for me and I didn't find that night's campsite until just after sundown. The campsite was on the east bank of the river, which was broad at that point, and the sky and reflecting water were aflame in a stunning palette of oranges and reds as I set my tent. The winds had died down completely.

DAY 3: had a clear blue sky and continued to be calm I paddled north up Lac Granet and back into the Riviere des Outaouais. Lac Granet is a fairly long lake, but shallow in parts. Often I felt like I wasn't getting anywhere as I paddled across it's glassy surface. But now and again I would pass through patches of water lilies. Watching them slip by the hull of the boat made me realize I was making good time. I stopped on a sand bar on the western shore to sun, eat, and swim.

Riviere des Outaouais exited the north end of the lake with a large rapid. Though not technical, the water was heavy, with 4 foot standing waves & I chose to take the full portage on river left (RL). The portage began with an ascent from the water up a smooth sloping rock and then continued in a straight line through the woods to the base of the rapids. There were fresh moose prints and droppings in the mud on the path.

Very soon after the rapid the river bends sharply to the left and countinues a southwesterly course for 15-20 km. There was some nice current in some sections, but no difficulties. I was disappointed to see quite a few camps along this section of the river, which is outside of the boundaries of La Vérendrye Wildlife Reserve. I even saw an ATV parked next to one of them. The next campsite that I had noted on my map was at Rapides Moose. By late in the day my back was very sore and the kilometers seemed to tick by slower and slower. The scenery was not particularly interesting, although I did take one enjoyable short detour up a slow moving stream on RL.

Late in the day I encountered a camp on RL on the outside of a bend in the river. It was on a flat grassy area with scattered birch trees. It looked like a nice place to camp & I climbed the bank to investigate. There was plenty of space for tenting & a picnic table too. The cabin was empty and unlocked. There was an outhouse in good shape around back. I decided to take a peek in side. The floor was covered with mouse droppings, the walls had several girlie magazine pictures tacked on them, and there was a second room with B-E-D-S! I felt like Goldilocks, but my aching back convinced me to sleep on one of the cots that night. I swept out the mouse droppings, cooked dinner on the picnic table, skinned my shaved head a couple times on the low doorway to the bedroom, and had a good nights sleep.

DAY 4: From camp I could hear the roar of Rapids Moose in the distance, and sure enough I came upon it with less than 2km of paddling. There is a portage on river right (RR). I scouted the rapid & decided to portage this one too. There was a marginal campsite at the bottom of this portage, though it would have been fine after a long day.

10-12km after this rapid Riviere des Outaouais makes a long turn to the right and switches from a southerly to a northerly direction. On RL there is a break in the shoreline leading into Lac Bend. Circuit 73 leaves the river here and continues south down Lac Bend. I stopped on a beach campsite on the east shore and then pushed on. To the west I could hear the occasional rumble of heavy trucks. At the south end of Lac Bend there is a 900m portage that mostly follows an old road. The southern end of the portage leads down a steep embankment to a stream that passes under the road. Proceeding upstream (south) the route passes through Lac Capitoul and Lac Black to Lac Goudie. There is a short portage just before Lac Goudie, and somewhere between Lac Bend and Lac Goudie I also had to haul up over a substantial beaver dam. In contrast to Riviere des Outaouais the water levels were low along here; I had to pole through some mud on Lac Black. I made camp on an island site in the middle of Lac Goudie. There was plenty of firewood, and a fire ring on a rock slab near the water. There was also a nice sheltered tent area in the trees with another fire ring. I enjoyed the sunset and then the night time skies next to a small fire. I remember battening down camp that night for rain, but I can't remember if a storm came through or not.

DAY 5: The winds were strong and from the southwest. I waited a while to see if they would lighten (they didn't) and then set out. From Lac Goudie the route passes south to Lac Flammarion without a portage. The 270m portage to Lac Poiré ended at a mud flat on the north end of Flammarion. Mud, with no plants and no water (except where I took a step in it) for 30m. This was going to be fun. But I realized that to the right I could leap from rock to rock to a rock that was in shallow water. So I pushed my Wildfire out into the mud after tying a long line to the bow. Then I filled it from the stern end, which was still at the edge of firm ground, leapt out on the rocks and pulled the boat out into the water, like a sled over the deep mud. It worked! I was a happy and still relatively clean canoeist. As soon as I was out on the water the strong winds began pushing dark rain clouds in. I stopped near an island, hopped out into the water, and put the spray deck on the boat. Lac Poiré is a complicated lake, long and thin with multiple islands and bays. Overall it's shaped like paint splattered in an "L" - north-south for much of it's length, and then east-west for the remainder. Part way down the lake I used the GPS to confirm my location. The rain started soon after that.

This portion of the trip, from the top of Lac Poiré to Lac de la Triple Baie, was the most beautiful part of the trip for me. It rained for much of the rest of the day, sometimes so hard that the water around me was dancing to such a froth that it seemed like there was no distinct surface to the water. But I had the deck on my canoe, my rain jacket on over the spray skirt, and a broad brimmed rain hat. The waterways are narrow and intimate. Often the shoreline is rocky, but there were also shallow areas full of blooming lily pads. I saw my first bear of the trip on the left bank. On Lac de la Triple Baie you have the option of turning northwards toward Big Chute and Lac Lambert (Circuit 70) or continuing east toward Grand Lac Victoria along a route shared with the north edge of Circuit 77. I chose to continue east and I made camp on the north shore of Lac de la Triple Baies. I was surprised to find a picnic table at this campsite. While finishing my paddle on Lac de la Triple Baies thunderclouds were building. The skies cleared enough while I was at camp to enjoy a spectacular sunset, with towering thunderclouds lit by side light. It poured most of the night.

DAY 6: The skies cleared off and I continued east toward Grand Lac Victoria. There was an uneventful portage to Lac Cornelier, which was a pretty lake. At the far side of this lake the 1.5km portage to Lac Grand Victoria begins with a shallow approach and a sandy beach. My boat ran aground before I reached water's edge, but the fine sand was pleasant and without debris; I waded my gear to shore barefoot.

The notes at Le Domaine say that the land along this portage has been "devastated by logging". I have seen land elsewhere in La Vérendrye that is currently devastated by logging, but the cut land along this portage was well on it's way toward reforesting, with lots of young conifers and blueberry bushes. It was by no means laid bare. I really enjoyed this portage. I knew it was going to be long, and I took my time and carried my camera. The portage skirts through woods along the south side of a beaver meadow. There were a few downed trees here, but most could be stepped over. Then it cuts across the meadow and crosses a small creek on a decaying makeshift footbridge of small conifer trunks. Only one and a half of these poles were still sturdy enough to carry my weight, so it was a bit of a tip-toe, with a walking stick for balance. Then the path ascends a bit through the section that was clearcut at some point in the past. I can remember stopping to admire the young connifers and eating blueberries along the way. Roughly the last third of the trail is in established woodland again, once again just south of a beaver meadow/marsh/pond. The water had flooded the portage path and I ended up splashing along through calf to knee deep water for parts of this section before reaching Grand Lac Victoria. If I continued back to Barker I would arrive late. I made camp on the west shore of the lake at a huge campsite with room under the trees for multiple tents and a long sandy beach along the water. The sunset was again stunning and I took some nice pictures with the help of my tripod. Surprisingly, though the air was still and there was a marsh just a little to the south, there were no bugs. I got to have a nice swim and hang out naked by a campfire.

DAY 7: Dawn was equally stupendous. I slept with the screen door of my tent facing east across the water and awoke with first light. The sky was everchanging and ablaze in wonderful pastels. The water was quiet. I took a few more pictures but then packed camp and got underway. I still remembered the fight I had with the wind while trying to paddle on Grand Lac Victoria at the beginning of the trip. I reached my car at Barker before noon, crept back down the stoney road back to 117 and was soon sailing along at 90km/h back towards Montreal.

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PostPosted: August 7th, 2008, 12:42 pm 
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Looks like a good addition to the Routes folder, Steve. :wink:



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PostPosted: August 7th, 2008, 2:35 pm 
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Thanks. I guess I could edit it for publication. :wink: I see a few typos and things that I could alter. And I could probably add more info about a few of the portages. I also see that the software wants me to say "weathervane" or something instead of weatherc-o-c-k. How silly. lol

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PostPosted: August 7th, 2008, 6:56 pm 
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hehehe....another reason to do a "preview" of posts before hitting that submit button.

"hey, what's with those asterisks? :-? Oh, yeah, I see what I typed there. :lol: "


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PostPosted: August 7th, 2008, 9:16 pm 
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Don't overedit it..we like some of those human touches. I also appreciate that you didn't see it necessary to refer too much to time except dark and light and thank you for not including your menus for each day!

I will be doing the 1.5 km portage to Grand Lac Victoria next week and the words " I really enjoyed this portage" are really encouraging. Rest assured I will update if there has been any change!

Now as to the 90 km/h back to Montreal...wanna change that? :wink: I don't see how that is possible without getting pushed off the road. Geez you would think 117 was a racecourse and drafting me would improve the slingshot effect. And I am doing 100 kph


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PostPosted: June 17th, 2018, 3:39 am 
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I know its been 10 years, but I need to give thanks for the report.
This was very helpful since only GPS maps exist.

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PostPosted: June 17th, 2018, 8:50 am 
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WOW. 10 years later I got a topic reply notification email and crazy my browser still remembers how to log me in!


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PostPosted: June 17th, 2018, 10:26 am 
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I'd like to get the GPS file for this route to add to my online map if someone has it.

http://www.prospector16.com/p/la-verendrye-map.html


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PostPosted: June 17th, 2018, 10:41 am 
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I wish that extended canoe trips in La Verendrye were realistically in my future. My kids are not camping kinds of kids. But if I was to go again I expect that with my new GPS I'd create my own route in Garmin's MapSource or Basecamp using the Canadian topo I have and mark the turns as well as all the known campsites along the way. I have always really enjoyed making my own trips.


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PostPosted: June 17th, 2018, 5:23 pm 
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John S wrote:
I wish that extended canoe trips in La Verendrye were realistically in my future. My kids are not camping kinds of kids. But if I was to go again I expect that with my new GPS I'd create my own route in Garmin's MapSource or Basecamp using the Canadian topo I have and mark the turns as well as all the known campsites along the way. I have always really enjoyed making my own trips.


Feel free to ask on the forum to join someones trip, leave the kids at home ;)

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